Wednesday, April 18, 2012

P = Publishing

P is for Publishing
(A-Z Theme: Changes Through History)

Publishing (n)the activities or business of a publisher,  especially of books or periodicals: He plans to go into publishing after college.

The publishing world has been evolving way before indie publishing began their movement. Did you know at one point agents didn't exist? Writers dealt directly with publishing houses (they still can). The idea of agents evolved from Hollywood. Now, I'm not an expert on publishing, but if you care to read more, read Dean Wesley Smith's blogs. He's been in the industry for a long time, and has tons of experience.

But, I do know that if not for the indie movement (writers ability to self-publish their work without agents), many great works would still be in the slush pile. We'd be deprived of talent and wouldn't have a choice.

Changes in the industry no longer take years, but months. The world of publishing is evolving. The distinction between traditionally published and self-published authors is diminishing.

What does this mean?

1. It's a great time to be a writer (that's not to say it's easy!), especially for those who write for specific niches, or short stories, and would have a difficult time finding an agent's attention.

2. Readers have more options. More reading material. 

3. Not everything published is good quality. This is where we come to crossroads. 

What's next?

Heck, if I knew, but I'll be watching as the industry expands and changes and I hope to be part of the change.  What do you think?


Annalisa Crawford said...

It's point number 3 that has me worried. There may be a time when there's no filtering system for the really bad stuff.

I was reading a point on another blog a little while ago which said if the writer self-publishes as soon as they get a rejection, they never explore the reasons behind the rejection and never have any reason to improve.

Shelly said...

I have to agree with Annalisa to a point. In fact, last night I read a blogger who is self-published complaining about her word choice or other self-published authors'word choices. And how they get picked on for it while the famous author has the same issue and things seem to slide by thier editors.

And yes, I see poor quality work from the famous authors and not just the Indie. So in my opinion they're equal there. THe only difference is one has peeps backing them up in the marketing the world and the other doesn't.

Also, every author should try the traditional route. It'll make you thick skinned. Really. You should even try putting your written stuff into competitions where you get feed back. This too will make you thick skinned.

No matter how it rolls for any writer, the publishing world is a crap shoot.

Like Forrest Gump's MaMa always said, "Life is like a box chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get until you bite into one".

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

But even without self-publishing, not everything published is good!

Lynda R Young said...

I have no idea where it's going, but it's certainly an exciting time!

Erin M. Hartshorn said...

I love Dean Wesley Smith's blog, and I never miss a Thursday post on his wife (Kristine Kathryn Rusch)'s blog, either.

Yeah, not everything published is good -- self-published or traditionally published. But readers have the same tools they've always had to find what they like -- recommendations from people they know, recs from the bookstore, or even reading the opening of the book.

Great post!