21 comments on “I Publish Thee, I Publish Thee Not

  1. Pingback: uberVU - social comments

  2. Very interesting points you bring up.

    I think the problem with self-publishing came about with those few people who rushed to print their books without a care for the quality of writing/design, thus giving it a bad connotation. As a matter of fact, I received such a book written by a friend of a friend who self-published on Lulu. It’s FULL of typos, some of the font changes mid read, and it’s 636 pages!

    You know — about the indies — while it’s true that it’s work not backed by mainstream major production companies, it doesn’t mean that the people who work at the independent companies are not professional, knowledgeable people who study their craft and are good at it. They want to put out a good product as much as anyone.

    I, too, would prefer the traditional route of publishing my work.

    I may change my mind, but for now that’s how I would go.

    Though you have intrigued me. Self-publishing flash fiction on Smashwords? That is an interesting idea since flash fiction is almost impossible to sell in traditional market.

    Lots of things to think about.
    .-= Marisa Birns´s last blog ..Avocation =-.

    • Hey Marisa,

      I think if someone goes the self publish route, they absolutely need to engage the services of an editor. Self publish should not = not edited.

      I absolutely recommend you checking out Smashwords. You could do a flash anthology, upload it and have it available in all ebook formats. They have agreements with Sony, B&N, Amazon and Apple among others. I just love ‘em.


  3. The stigma is still alive and well, but I do think the trend will be toward more self-publishing. I see more and more ‘traditionally published’ works now with typos littering them. Makes me wonder who still works at the pubs.
    .-= Laura Eno´s last blog ..Feature Story at the NOT =-.

    • Laura,

      I’ve actually quite reading Pub books that were rife with errors. It does irritate me when these things make it to print with the big houses.

      I agree with the trending assessment. It will be interesting to see where things lay in a couple of years.


  4. I absolutely believe in self-published work. I don’t believe in poor work. I will do my very best on any book I publish myself. I plan on having an editor check my work and if at all possible, a designer help with the cover.

    Just because we lean toward self-published books, does NOT mean we should be treated badly.

    And I don’t know how traditionally-published authors could be so arrogant. One, I know for a fact, only makes a few cents per copy.


    And we’re the dumb ones??????


    Don’t even get me started. LOL ;-)

    Great topic, George, and I loved all your humor throughout this post.
    .-= Michele | aka Raw Juice Girl´s last blog ..OpenSky Oster Blender Giveaway + a Free Cabbage Patch Smoothie Recipe =-.

    • Hi Michele,

      Just so you’ll know, I took my spam filter out back and roughed it up a bit for parking your comment. It promises to behave now.

      I have no doubt that if your name is on it, it will be a quality product.

      Hehe, it’s kinda fun getting you started ;-)


  5. George,

    Only you could write a post about publishing and make me laugh while doing so.

    “Darned tootin’ fig newton.” (See what I mean? LOL)

    OK, so maybe I’m in a bit of a laughter mood today, but regardless, this is an impressive post.

    I can’t believe I’m going to admit this in public, but I hadn’t thought about indie films and music and their relationship to self-publishing. Great point! (My MENSA card has been officially rejected.) And, George, WOW, you’ve had over 2,000 downloads over at Smashwords? That’s great!

    OK, you have me convinced. I had planned to take a similar path as you, actually — take non-fiction the classic publishing route, other ‘goodies’ I write I plan to self-publish.

    Thanks for this, George, you’ve put yet more smiles on my face today.
    .-= Lori (JaneBeNimble)´s last blog ..RAOKA: Laughter =-.

    • Lori,

      Any day this mug could put a smile on yours is a good day in my book. I’m glad you enjoyed the post. I guess the humor fits in with your RAOKA topic, eh?



  6. Hi George!

    I couldn’t resist putting in my dos centavos about this hot-button issue.

    First of all, ever since I was in college (yes, when muscle cars sold for about $4500!) I saw the inherent genius in independent cinema. I’ve probably seen more indie films than most of your audience and the point is that these film school bad boys and girls set the creative bar so high that it literally lifted the whole Hollywood ark.

    Guys like John Casavettes, Jim Jarmush, Quentin Tarantino, Francis Ford Coppala, and Oliver Stone are now cinematic legends, and the accountant-driven major movie studios are imitating indies like there is no tomorrow.

    And just look at music! Curt Cobain, Carlos Santana, Jimmie Paige. They all honed their craft in small venues and were way ahead of the creative curve. Independent artists all!

    I just posted an article on the Wayne’s Blog pages of my web site today, extolling the important and valid reasons why indie writers like me will never sell out to the big pubs and their ilk. Your readers just might want to cruise on over there in their shiny new hybrids to see what I mean.
    (You DO own a hybrid, George, don’t you? Lexus makes four of them.)

    Self-publishing is not bad in, and of, itself. But by taking on the mantle of self-publisher, one better have that marketing degree and five-year business plan in their hot little hand BEFORE they go down the path to non-recognition. AND, they had better have mastered the King’s English and stayed awake in high school creative writing class. Yes, I’m a marketing graduate and, yes, I do have a five-year plan for my short story e-mail subscription service. And, yes, I stayed awake.

    Everybody wants to see their name in lights! I do. So do you. And you, too.

    But I want mine to appear at the Sundance Film Festival and win at the Independent Spirit Awards, not at the Academy Awards slumberfest.

    So, yes, I Publish Thee.


    Wayne C. Long
    Writer/Editor/Digital Publisher
    Where the Short Story LIVES!

    • Wayne!

      Ahhhh! I’m trying to get to the blog but the wheel just keeps a spinnin’ telling me it’s loading! I’ll continue to try this evening.

      Folks, you can get to Wayne’s site by clicking the LongShortStories ad in the Right Sidebar.

      I’m with you, Wayne. I’ll take an indie award all day long. This would also help me toa avoid any embarrassing “Wardrobe Malfunctions” on the red carpet whilst wearin’ me kilt!


      • Okay, it did load.

        Yes, I believe you can save the world, brother. And I do drive a hybrid, thank-you-very-much. It’s a 92 Ford Pickup, half piece of crap and half piece of s**t.


        • Sorry, George and all Tumblemoosers for the Web site malfunction over at LongShortStories. Being such an indie kind of guy, I completely forgot to put more nickles in the server.

          We’re all hybrids, really. I’m Germanic-Swedish.

          And you and I are related, Geo, if only separated by six degrees! Kinda scary.


  7. George,

    A great post about self-publishing. I am a big advocate of self-publishing, and most of my editing clients self-publish their work. They use professionals for cover art, layout, and editing, and I would put their books up against traditionally published books any day.

    Self-publishing is not appropriate for every author or every book. Your plan to pursue traditional publishing for some of your work and self-publish your flash fiction makes sense.

    Self-published books usually sell far fewer copies than traditionally published books, but the author can make as much or more money from fewer sales because they are getting all the profits and not just a small royalty from the publisher.

    Books that have a limited niche market are ideal candidates for self-publishing—memoir, family history, nonfiction about places or people that aren’t well-known, for example. Some authors choose to self-publish because they don’t think they can afford to spend the time required for traditional publication—elderly people, for example.
    .-= Lillie Ammann´s last blog ..Review: Call Me Kate: Meeting the Molly Maguires =-.

    • Lillie,

      Your comment means so much to me. Your points are well made and I know you truly are immersed in the business – which makes them more valuable still.

      Thank you for coming by and commenting.


  8. George,

    I really think the prejudice against self-published books is waning. True, thee are still people who dismiss a book out of hand if it’s published by the author, but the castle walls are crumbling around them. The drive to independence, toward transparency and the ability to gain hold of the means of production is continuing to grow.

    What makes it work best is when authors really put all their energy into creating a quality product, one that can stand next to the books from major publishers and compete toe-to-toe. And more and more people are doing exactly that.
    .-= Joel Friedlander´s last blog ..The Self-Publishing Boot Camp: May 1, 2010 =-.

    • Hi Joel,

      Thanks for the inspiration for this post.

      I think it is all about the quality. I try and keep that in mind and I think any author that envisions success with their self publishing efforts would be wise to do the same.


  9. With everything that is going on these days, struggling economy, and companies downsizing or drastically changing how they do business in order to save money-which would include publishing companies-it’s harder now to have a book published. It’s not because these companies don’t want to, but because they either can’t afford to take on any new items, or it’s not something they are currently looking for. Some of the writers are probably turning to self publishing because they are probably mpatient with the process; however, I believe there are many out there that believe their works to be important and good enough, but are not able to find any publishers to take on any more new works. So, considering the fact that as writers living in a modern age, we must take into account all formats that are currently available to put our work out there. And yes, that would include self-publishing. With that being said, there are many sites out there that make self-publishing way too easy. Like traditinal publishing, there need to be a process to follow when getting a book ready to be published. I believe that each book needs to follow this process (all the editing and revisions, and what not), and once it has, then it can be published. Writers should not be penalized for wanting to self publish; but, at the same time, these same writers should want to put their best work out there and not rush the process.


    • Hi Carrie,

      Thanks for the thoughtful comment. I agree that self publishing is no excuse for sloppiness in editing or writing. Folks that see it as an easy shortcut are the ones that allow the vanity stigma to remain.


  10. HI George,
    Firstly, freaking awesome sense of humor…i cant stop smiling and giggling all at the same time.
    I ALREADY published thee!!! Ahhhhh….I shouldve read this before I published my “Best Of Positive Provocations” ebook… :)
    But, seriously…..I am all for self publishing. We have the talent, we have the means, we have the technology…so why not? If we are putting our name on something its going to mean our name is on the line….self published or traditional publishing!
    I’m with Michelle on this one….boo to those arrogant insecure authors who think we arent writers and have no patience..
    I think its probably cause they are getting a wee bit insecure about us little folk. With the current self published books doing so well…..i guess them lashing out like this is only normal ;)
    But again I already published thee….ofcourse this was a collection of articles. But the next book…next topic will be up for sale :) (hoping atleast something sells then) ;)
    Much love,

    • Zeenat,

      I’m so happy you enjoy the humorous style! This was a post I wrote with great passion.

      Where can I get the Best of…? I’m assuming there is a link from your web page?

      Always thrilled to see you here, Z.


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