Author Jo Huddleston

Sweet Southern Romance

Thursday, August 25, 2011

What About Self-Published Books?

Thursday Thoughts on Reading ‘N Writing

Last Thursday we looked at the reasons that lead you to purchase a book. To summarize, here’s what we looked at: Title, Cover, Back cover text, Recommendations, Price, or shopping for a specific author or title.

Let’s go a bit further today with this question: Would you consider self-published books when you’re shopping in a bookstore? Why? Why not?

Authors are seeing longer and longer waiting times when trying to get published with a “traditional, royalty-paying publisher.” I read that it took Kathryn Stockett, author of The Help, five years to write that book. Then it took her three and one-half years and sixty rejections to get agent #61 to say yes.

Many authors now don’t want to go through such a long process toward publication. Because technology for the writer has opened an avenue toward publishing that is quicker and gives the writer more control, the scenario has changed. Self-publishing, Publish on Demand (POD), and eBook publishing are changing the publishing business in favor of the writer. This scenario has some traditional publishers now writing in an author’s contract that the publisher retains eBook rights. Some publishers today are coming out with a print version and an eBook version of each book they publish.

If you plan to publish an eBook yourself, be sure to get a professional edit before you submit your document. If you have out-of-print books that have been traditionally published, you won’t have to be concerned about the editing because it got a professional edit already. You must, however, get the rights to the book from the publisher who released it before. And if you want the same cover, you’ll have to contact the artist to obtain rights to use that cover.

Kindle, Smashwords, and Barnes and Noble are places you can publish an eBook. But don’t expect an instant listing on the bestseller lists. Even as it is with traditionally published books, you should expect to do most/all of the marketing of your eBook.

So, as a buyer would you consider purchasing a self-published book? Why? Why not?
As a writer would you consider self-publishing your book as an eBook? Why? Why not?

Till next time ... keep on smiling.


  1. Hi Jo,
    Informative article! As a reader I usually don't buy self-published books. It's not because I care if they're self-published or not but most I see around here look so amateurish. You can spot them a mile away...
    As a writer, I'm following the traditional path. I would consider self-publishing my booklet on women's ministry though if I reach the point I'm speaking more often. :)


  2. Jennifer, thanks for your comment. I've noticed more individually self-published books are nonfiction. The traditional publishers, however, are beginning to issue two editions--paper and e.
    Thanks for following my blog.