Friday, September 28, 2012

Self-Publishing:--Is It for You? Four Writers Share Their Experiences with Releasing Their Own Books

Several years ago, I was browsing through a recent issue of The Writer's Chronicle, a wonderful publication from AWP.  AWP has been around for four decades, and its purpose is to help writers become better writers, usually through writing programs in schools and colleges.  It's a good place to stay current on publishing news, see what's new in writing classes, and cheer on colleagues who have just released their new books.

The Writer's Chronicle always has ads for these new books, and I turned to a full-page ad for a recent release by a multiple-award winning writer I admired.  I scanned the page to see who his publisher was, and there in bold type was Lulu Press--a self-publishing company.
Wow, I thought, self-publishing has come up in the world!  Not long after that, I began reading articles in the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times about writers who were making their millions from self-published books, often landing a six-figure advance and contract from mainstream houses as a result.

It used to be called "vanity press," but now it's looking like a good deal for many writers.  Why?  What are the pitfalls and the benefits of publishing yourself?  Why are so many writers considering it a great option these days?