I want to write intelligently about the new wave of publishing online. I really do. But despite doing the research, I find there are still many things that elude me.
Like, I don’t know why the term 'Epublishing' excludes self published material (I mean E-anything means electronic doesn’t it? Whether its self published or Electronic Publisher published? See, I’m confusing myself. Again.) Or why ‘Indie Publishing’ has eight different definitions. I have totally God or Googled the whole thing. But it feels like everyone is giving a different answer.
Everywhere I look there’s a new article highlighting how successful some online authors are- making double or triple what they would have made with a traditional publisher and in a tenth of the time. And when you read stories like this and this, it does sound terribly tempting, doesn’t it?
However, the more I dug around, the more I realized the world of profitable online publishing is something that takes months of research to fully comprehend. For instance- why do some authors hit it big and others no? (besides the obvious- some people working harder at their craft and putting out a solid product) From what I can gather, it’s a mix of attractive cover art, hot genre (romance and erotica are apparently doing very well), lots of marketing, worthy storylines and LUCK. – Ugh! No matter what you do in this business LUCK seems to play at least a 75% roll in your success.
The dangers and deceptions in online publishing include putting out a product that isn’t 100% at its best (in the case of self publishing). No one buying your book. Losing any chance whatsoever at traditional publishing with the story in question.
The dangers and deceptions in traditional publishing seem to be the fear of spending years writing and waiting and waiting and waiting for the publishing industry to decide they want you (slight risk of dying of old age before this happens). No one buying your book. OR selling less copies than you would have if you’d been published online (since you control the pricing with an online product and this tends to raise book sales) and making less money for your work because you’d be receiving a lower percentage of the royalties with a traditional publisher.
Thankfully, a few of my author friends have decided to go the Online Publishing route in its various forms and are much better equipped to give insight on the process - India Drummond, Stephanie Haefner, Nicole Zoltack, Emily White, Anita Laydon Miller, Aubrie Dionne and Karly Kirkpatrick especially come to mind. Be sure to check them out!
If anyone else has had experience with online publishing, I’d love for you to share it in the comments! As for all the other authors like me, trying to go traditional- what do you guys think about publishing online? Tempting or completely overwhelming?