This conversation is closed.

Traditional Publishing should not be your first choice.

With your forbearance, I would like to take another tilt at the archaic, and often overwhelming terms of Vanity Press, or Vanity Publications.
I am self-published and proud that I took that risk, never listening to those biased individuals, suffering and wallowing in inverted snobbery decrying that route, as a form of self-admiration and nothing else.
One huge advantage that self-publishing gives you is the rights to all your hard work. Currently $30,000,000 is being spent on my novel, THE DESOLATE GARDEN, to be turned into a Film. Had my work been traditional published I would see little, if anything, of that money other than through the increase in book sales. Now I will see considerably more.
I would urge anyone stuck between waiting for the golden clad traditional deal and taking a chance on their own, to wait no longer. If you are confident in your work then smile at vanity and embrace an opportunity. Good luck to you.

Closing Statement from Daniel Kemp

I have attended many conferences on self-publication and spoken at one. It is another approach for aspiring writers, not a panacea, but an opportunity that up to a few years ago was not there or, if engaged; mocked.
I know that I have been fortunate, but that is not to say I am the only one, and it could not happen to you. All chances in life require hard and committed work to achieve the success we crave. However, unless your work is out there it will never be read.
Due diligence is necessary in all things, self-publication is no different in that respect. I thank everyone who took part in this, my first posting to TED, and wish you all well. Thank you.

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    Feb 4 2013: Traditional publishing has been able to promote a level of excellence that may not be easy to maintain if it were a free-for-all; but excellence usually speaks for itself. Whether with books by recognised publishers or with books by self-published authors.
    • Feb 4 2013: You are absolutely right Feylsayo, there are lots of badly edited self-published novels that give a bad name to the ones that are of a high standard. Thank you for commenting.
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    Feb 4 2013: Just want to make sure you (and your literary agent) understand that TED Conversations is not a place for people to promote their books, as you might on your blog tour. The space is not for commercial self-promotion.

    You don't seem actually to want to engage about the issue of self-publishing versus traditional publishing, either for those who failed to find a traditional publisher or those who would have the traditional option? Would you like to put forward some arguments?
    • Feb 4 2013: I haven't had anyone to 'engage' with Fritzie. My opening to this discussion was an objection to the often used label of being vain by going down the route I chose. No-one has put forward a reply to refute that, or to champion a traditional publisher. However, I take your point about self-promotion, but without the reference to the success of my own venture into vanity, then there was no real sustained point to this debate.
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        Feb 4 2013: What sort of marketing/self-promotion does a person need to be willing to do to make the self-publishing route successful for a debut novel? Did you have a literary agent representing you to conventional publishers first? What difference would it make to have an agent versus not having one for a debut novel?
        • Feb 4 2013: Marketing requires intense work, but as I understand things that would apply if traditionally published. I had a Literary agent who did present my first ever novel to the top ten publishers, to no avail. I was impatient and wanted to be read. I don't think it would have made any difference to have had, or not had an agent.
  • Feb 4 2013: Yes it is, but hopefully it is good advice as well.
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    Feb 4 2013: nice self promotion you have there
  • Feb 4 2013: congratulations
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