WITS is happy to welcome Cynthia D'Alba. And psst, she has a giveaway . 🙂
Hi all! Cynthia D’Alba here. Today we’re going to talk about going with a publisher, be it digital first (such as Samhain Publishing) or NYC publisher (like St. Martin’s Press, Harlequin, Penguin, etc) versus Indie Publishing (do-it-yourself, aka self-publishing). I have one short story, Texas Two Step: The Prequel, that I indie published. The rest of my work is with various publishers (Samhain, Running Press, and Cleis.)
If you are relatively new to writing and the publishing world (like the last 2 or 3 years), you might not be aware of how much and how fast this world is changing. I’ve watched the world of “self-publishing” transform from a looked-down-upon sneer to “indie publishing” where writers of all levels of experience, from newbie to established, are exploring the new publishing frontier. Before digital became popular, authors who wanted to self-publish were usually bamboozled by unethical “publishers” who took their money and produced poorly edited, cheap paperbacks. (I realize this is a broad generalization but bear with me.)
With the digital revolution, authors were given direct access to the reader via online stores such as Amazon, Smashwords, Barnes & Nobles, etc. Writers could hire the most professional editors, the best cover artists, format the book themselves or hire that done, and publish their work to these online stores ready to be purchased by the reader. No driving around with books in the trunk of the car to sell.
I confess that I don’t blink at buying a book at $3.99 or less. Click. Bought. It’s that simple. I probably buy MORE books digitally than I ever bought in print. Those of us in this writing world hear fabulous stories of wealth and riches to be made via indie publishing. Authors report six-figure incomes without a hitch. So the question Laura Drake posed to me was … Why are you using a publisher when you could do all this yourself and make mega bucks? (Okay, she didn’t say megabucks but she did ask the first part of the question!) And it’s a good question!
Today, I read an article in Publisher Weekly that we may be seeing print no longer being the norm even for the big publishers. The pressure on the author and the publisher to get books out faster is changing how our industry works. Every major NYC publisher now has a digital only or digital first line. In fact, I’ll go further and say that when I first started, digital publishing was thought of as second rate at best.
So if readers are demanding faster turnaround for books and willing to the pay the author directly, why did I decide to go with a digital first publisher and not just indie publish my work?
Again, there are independent cover artists for hire. Plus some authors are doing their own covers for their indie published work. Just as with an editor, who do I hire? What do I pay? What if I had a friend who can do it for free or cheap?
I think if I knew what I wanted on the cover, this is the smallest hurdle (for me) when thinking about indie publishing. I’ve seen some fabulous covers produced by freelance artists. But having Samhain's art department behind me on my first book was liberating.
In a nutshell, I choose to go with a digital first publisher rather than an indie publisher because I wanted to share the post-writing workload. I didn’t want to spend my time researching editors, cover artists, distribution channels, book reviewers, reader locations, etc. I enjoy the marketing (i.e., blogs, chats, Facebook, Twitter, etc) but beyond that, I like having a team behind me.
And I like that I provide employment for others.
There’s nothing wrong with indie publishing and in all likelihood, I’ll do more in the future. But I’ll have an established reader base then and maybe not such an uphill struggle with sales.
About Cynthia & fun stuff ...
Maybe you’re curious about Cynthia D’Alba. Here’s a little more about me: I was born and raised in a small Arkansas town. After being gone for a number of years, I’m thrilled to be making my home back in Arkansas living in a vine-covered cottage on the banks of an eight-thousand acre lake. I started writing on a challenge from my husband in 2006 and discovered having imaginary sex with lots of hunky men was fun.
My first book, Texas Two Step, released in 2012 to outstanding reviews, was a Samhain Publishing best seller. The second book in the Texas Montgomery Mavericks series, Texas Tango, released November 5, 2013, again from Samhain Publishing. In February, 2014, Texas Fandango, a Novella in the Texas Montgomery Series will be released by Samhain Publishing. I am currently at work on book 3 of the Texas Montgomery Mavericks series (Texas Twist).
or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
To send me snail mail, write to: Cynthia D’Alba, PO Box 2116, Hot Springs, AR 71914
Now some fun stuff! 🙂
In the spirit of Christmas sneaking up on us, I’ll pick among the comments for someone to take home a western-themed ornament. Here’s just a sample…
Plus, I'm doing a TEXAS TANGO Jewelry-Themed Rafflecopter Giveaway. Since we are on a WordPress.com blog, the widget can’t be embedded. BUT if you click HERE, you’ll be magically transported to my Facebook page and a back-up Rafflecopter widget. Also check out my personal blog for other places you can enter! Here’s the loot you can win…
AND I have swag for the asking! But when it’s gone, it’s gone. Pens, jar openers, postcards, bookmarks, trading cards…just go by my contact page and send me a note.
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