Jane Smith’s How Publishing Really Works is worth a read at the best of times (if you’re interested in publishing, of course), but her five-part demolition of a “self-publishing is the future” screed is particularly delicious. Part five has just gone up; here are parts one, two, three and four.
But the people that you perceive as barriersâ€”agents, editors, publishersâ€”are, in fact, there to help good writers get published well, and to ensure that the reading public has access to good books, professionally produced. Thereâ€™s nothing stopping anyone from putting their work on the internet if they want, or from self-publishing in print or electronic format: the technology has been there for years. The real problem for writers who canâ€™t get published isnâ€™t that barriers to publication exist, but that their writing just isnâ€™t good enough.
In the comments Dan Holloway quibbles with the word “good” – he reckons “saleable” would be better, and I think he’s right; whether it’s good isn’t as important as whether it’ll sell – but you get the idea, I’m sure.
0 responses to “Self-publishing isn’t that great”
Gary, thank you for the words of support–I particularly like being called delicious in this context.
I think Dan has a point: but I also think that my use of “good” didn’t exclude “saleable” at all–in the article I was using “good” to equal “commercially viable” rather than “of great literary value”. It’s obvious I should have been clearer, though, and I thank you and Dan for pointing this out.
Mr Rozansky hasn’t turned up to comment on the fourth and fifth parts of my little series, and he hasn’t answered any of my questions either. I did hope he’d engage more in the series, but can’t blame him for not wanting to place himself in the firing line any more. He has taken a bit of a battering from me, I’m afraid.
Hi Jane, thanks for dropping by and for clearing that up.
> Mr Rozansky hasnâ€™t turned up to comment on the fourth and fifth parts of my little series
I’m sure he’s had enough :)
There was a really interesting comment on Jane’s blog, which I’ll copy some of here. The post was by Michael: