1. Juganhut
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    Juganhut Banned

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    I have two options for publishing (Help!)

    Discussion in 'Publishing' started by Juganhut, Aug 8, 2012.

    So, I finished my book a few weeks ago, and had it edited on eLance. I started to get a cover made but the person told me a week later that she did not have the time to do it. I hired a cover artist who said it may take 3 weeks to complete (But said could be sooner.)

    Now I am sitting here with a completed manuscript. I already formatted it for Kindle and Createspace, but again, I can't do anything until I get my cover art. Everything is already uploaded and ready to go.

    I had written a query and synopsis while I was waiting and still debating about trying the traditional route. I was impacient and decided to just self publish. Now that I have to wait anyways, should I just start sending out inquries to agents and publishing companies?

    They were already assigned ISBN numbers, but that is only attached to the name and I have not published them yet so it would not be a problem with first right of sale (I hope).

    Should I send out the inquiries or just wait to self publish?
     
  2. B93
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    B93 Active Member

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    Compare the downsides of each. The potential upside of either is probably satisfactory, so compare the negatives.

    The inquiry and agent route will take months if not years. Do you have the patience to send out a hundred queries, get a few rejections, and sit there hoping that one or more of the no-answer ones eventually comes back with a request for a sample, followed by months of waiting to see if they want to buy it?

    The self-publishing route will put all the burden of publicity and promotion on you. You will be competing with a huge number of other new-author publications to gain enough ratings and recognition to achieve visibility and sales. You will have pulled the trigger and get tired of waiting for something to happen, and frustrated at your ineffective promotion efforts.

    Your choice.
     
  3. marktx
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    marktx Contributing Member

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    Channeling Cogito in ...3...2...1.

    IF THIS TURNS INTO A DEBATE ABOUT SELF-PUBLISHING VERSUS TRADITIONAL PUBLISHING, THIS THREAD WILL BE CLOSED.

    (Okay...unchanneling...)

    As far as your options, it really depends on what you want from your efforts. If you strongly believe in what you have written, if you want to see it published through the traditional channels, then it is well worth the extra time it will take. You're excited about what you've written, relieved that it is finished, and naturally you are in a hurry to unleash it on the world. Perfectly normal responses.

    But unless you've written a book with the shelf-life of unrefrigerated milk, then you can afford to take the time to explore your options thoroughly. If you would like to get it in front of agents and publishers, a good start would be to visit Query Shark and learn how to create a query letter that sells.
     
  4. Crystal Parney
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    Crystal Parney Member

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    I feel like I am in the same boat as you! My first novel is being published the traditional way. I've signed a contract back in Nov and my book, Beyond Gavia, will be out in Oct of this year, but I just completed my second novel. I decided to self publish my second novel, just to see what happens. Self-publishing has become this huge wave, and I wanted to make my attempt riding it yet there are soooo many other surfers! The self publishing forum is being overcrowded. I feel like my book will just drown. I'm in the process of editing, and I just hired a cover artist. I am going to see what happens, but promoting, marketing, and attempting to build an author platform is so very exhausting.
     
  5. Juganhut
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    Juganhut Banned

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    I decided to just self publish this book. It is a learning journey, and I feel like once my abilities improve a bit more, I can attempt to be published. This is just an impulse thing of mine.

    Besides, my cover artist just sent me a sketch and is starting to do the color. A few more days and I am good to go!
     
  6. TWErvin2
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    TWErvin2 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Juganhut,

    It's going to take a lot longer than a couple weeks to find a publisher.
     
  7. Juganhut
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    Juganhut Banned

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    I know, thats why i stuck with self publishing this time.
     
  8. LuminousTyto
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    LuminousTyto Senior Member

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    Most publishers will just ignore a writer who doesn't have representation by an agent. Especially an unpublished writer. So he's gonna have to find an agent. Takes a while, then his agent is going to have to find a deal for his book. That's gonna take a bit.
     
  9. TWErvin2
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    TWErvin2 Contributing Member Contributor

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    While it does depend on the publisher (in fantasy many are open to unsolicited, but it takes a long time), an reputable agent representing an author's work is a more efficient and possibly effective route. Small publishers that don't require an agent will take time as well.

    Seeking an agent:
    Query
    If the query is found to be of interest, a request for a partial.
    If the partial is found to be of interest, request for full
    If the full is found to be acceptable then the negotiate the contract between agent and author
    Agent may request some revision of novel (or maybe not).
    Agent will begin the process of submitting to editors at publishers.
    Publishers decide, if accepted, contract negotiations begin.
    If contract is accepted and signed, novel waits for its turn to be edited.
    While editing begins, review copies sent out for blurbs and cover art is commissioned.
    After edits and galleys accepted review copies sent out.
    Novel will then hit the shelves sometime later.

    In reality, an author is looking at two years minimum from query to publication, and that's if everything goes smoothly and the query process doesn't take long and the time it takes an agent to find a publisher (which doesn't always happen). Sometimes it takes a year or two to find an agent, if an author is successful.

    Slush piles with major publishers (that accept unsolicited mansucripts) can take six months to a year to be considered. Even with a small publisher it can take that long.
     
  10. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    If I were to consider self-publishing, I would assume that the results would follow the current odds--that is, that I'd sell very, very few copies, maybe a dozen or so. Therefore, I would expect that any money spent--cover art, editing, etc.--would be an almost complete loss. I would think of the book as a lovingly built hobby creation, not a business.

    Given that, odds are that I'd rather just offer the book for free as a serial on my blog. If I valued the book too much to give it away, then I'd value it too much to provide it at a loss or near-loss through self-publishing, and I'd go with traditional publishing. If after a few years of submitting, it seemed clear that traditional publishing was never going to happen, then I'd be back to giving it away on my blog.
     
  11. Juganhut
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    Juganhut Banned

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    Yeah, I am fully aware of it. I know its not easy or will be a short road. While I have been waiting I have been setting up as much free ads as possible and got a few places to review the novel. The first review was really good, so I may throw a quote on the back of my book as a selling tool.

    I feel more productive doing something while I wait. I am about five chapters through the sequal and about 3 chapters into a seperate novel. Started a few short stories and storyboarded another novel.

    When I feel I reach a publishing/agent level I will move forward, but at this time this is just like practice and satisfaction. I am not really doing it for the money (Right now atleast).

    Thanks for the responses.
     
  12. DefinitelyMaybe
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    DefinitelyMaybe Contributing Member Contributor

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    Is there a thread where you describe how you went about getting your novel published by the traditional route? How things worked out for you?

    Is the version of the novel that you submitted the same as the three chapters that are available online?
     
  13. JamesOliv
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    JamesOliv Senior Member

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    You can also do both. I hae purchased physical copies of web based books before. The first time I did this was with the famous John dies at the end. Tens of thousands of people viewed the book for free and the thing still sold.

    If you are going to self publish, I think it is imperative you make your work available to people for free (opinion, just an opinion). Just like sampling the Swedish meatballs at Sam's club, it gives people a chance to have a taste before they spend a bunch of money they regret (or return it in the case of the book, you usually can't return meatballs, it turns out).

    But this is all a pretty heavy decision to make. It is filled with expenses most people don't consider (usually editing) and should not be undertaken lightly.

    Self-publishing because you can't go the traditional route (and for no other reason) is as silly as deciding to make your own shoes because the local shoe store was closed on the day you visited. But if you really want to make shoes because you dig the challenge...
     
  14. Steph4136
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    Steph4136 Senior Member

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    I think that book John Dies In The End may not be the best example. The author is the head editor and a writer at Cracked and already had a huge fan base when he wrote that book.

    The only other example of self publishing turning into a published book is 50 Shades....and that's another bad example.
     
  15. JamesOliv
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    JamesOliv Senior Member

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    I wasn't providing an example of a self published book being published. I was providing an example of a book being available for free on a website and then being sold.

    JDATE (ha! Awesome acronym) was also available for sale through cafepress while it was still on the website. People bought a physical copy even though the entire book was posted online.

    All of this before it was picked up by a publisher.
     

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