I work for a small press that publishes books about
We should be an author's dream, right? Wrong.
This is what I hear from writers:
1) What! No royalties????
2) What! You only pay that much for a manuscript?
3) What! You don't have sales reps in the
4) What! You expect me to rewrite my blog pieces so they will make a coherent and logical book?
5) What! You won't send me on a nationwide book tour?
6) What! You expect me to revise my work?
7) What! You've deleted my prose in this spot?
8) What! You don't have a marketing department?
These are direct quotes except for the two words that usually follow What...
And in answer to these heartfelt cries of anguish, I have a brief reply:
Self-publish as an e-book. Consider print-on-demand and consignment sales. Take two aspirin and don't call me in the morning.
I am a writer. I've also been a bookseller at a store that is known to be one of
I have friends who were published by major houses, were paid a lot of money, and now have books that are out of print. I have friends who were published by major houses as paperback originals and saw their words put on grainy paper with cheap, curling covers. For me, it means a lot for my books to stay alive and to look as though they are worth more than a damn to the business that brought them into the world.
But that's me--and I am clearly an idealist. I still believe in books as physical objects that deserve respect. But that respect has to come from all sides of the publishing spectrum. It's not match.com--publishers are not Prince Charming on that white horse, out to make every dream come true. But if we work together, we can make your book come true--in a way that makes everybody proud. Probably not rich or famous but proud to say, "See that book? That's mine."