Legacy vs. Self-Publishing

Much has been written about the choice a writer has between legacy publishing and self-publishing.

In my third blog stream, I’m going to wade into this giant debate with a series of posts about the pros and cons of each. I’ll try to distinguish my contribution by looking at the pros and cons in some detail. At the end, I’ll summarize the result.

Some opening comments.

First, what I mean by “legacy” publishing is, of course, entering into a contract with a publishing house to publish one or more books, usually with the help of a literary agent. By “self-publishing”, I mean publishing a book on a platform like Kindle or Kobo, or with an aggregator like Smashwords.

Second, let’s be thankful there’s a choice. One of the main advantages of self-publishing is the opportunity to get a book out there and possibly get feedback. No more manuscript gathering dust on a bookshelf or corrupting after years on a hard drive.

Third, I’ll take the perspective of a writer who’s completed their first book. They’ve done the best job they can and it’s ready for an edit. Do they send it to agents and/or publishers, or do they hire an editor and self-publish? So, I’m not taking the perspective of the lucky writer who already has interest from a publisher.

Lastly, my choice has been made. I self-published The Case for Killing and expect to do the same with my second book. I quickly grew impatient with the legacy publishing world. To a degree, the path each writer chooses is personal. But going through the pros and cons of each approach in this blog stream will help.

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