Traditional Publishing Vs. Self-Publishing

Publishing BookI’ve never seriously considered self-publishing even though so many authors are doing it these days. It’s easier than ever and some folks have even been quite successful. Heard of “The Shack?” But it just never appealed to me.

And I’ll be honest about why. I want–no crave–the validation of traditional publishing. I want an agent to see potential. I want an editor to fall in love. I want a team of folks working with me to make the book as good as it can be. I want a publishing house to tell me my work is worth investing in.

But I never really said all of that out loud because it felt like pride. Like I’m just looking for approval. Well, here’s the thing. Apparently I’m not the only one.

Rachelle Gardner, a literary agent at Books And Such, recently launched her first field guide for authors (there’s going to be a whole series) titled, How Do I Decide? Self-Publishing vs. Traditional Publishing.

And guess what? There’s a whole section on validation. Rachelle offers up a quiz to help authors decide if they want to self-publish or go the traditional route. She outlines a whole series of reasons to go one way or the other. And one of the reasons to pursue traditional publishing is validation. Which tells me this is a common thing.

It’s like thinking you’re the only one who eats ice cream for breakfast and then learning most of your friends do it, too. I still need to keep my pride in check. I still need to make sure I’m pursuing publication for His glory. I still need to remember that His validation is all I need. But it sure is nice to know I’m not the only one.

If you’re weighing the pros and cons of self vs. traditional publishing, check Rachelle’s e-book out. It’s chock full of helpful information including that cool quiz I mentioned. (And I do LOVE quizzes!)

5 thoughts on “Traditional Publishing Vs. Self-Publishing

  1. I really struggled with the whole pride thing. I am very self absorbed. Anyone who knows me, knows that. But that doesn’t mean I don’t pour it out for others, it just means I’m quite comfie in my own skin.
    After spending a year on my MS, there is nothing wrong with wanting people to fuss over it.

    We write to share.

  2. heatherdaygilbert

    Yes, I definitely want some sort of recognition, but at this stage in the game, I feel I’ve gotten a great deal of that out of the way, just through beta readers/agent approval, publisher comments, etc. I’m almost at the point where I’d feel comfortable self-pubbing, b/c I think my audience is there. But I wouldn’t have GOTTEN to this point without believing my book(s) could go the traditional route–and without working for a solid year on my platform. My big thing is that I want a traditional publisher b/c they can get my book in places where I can’t. Yet that excuse seems to be wearing thin, in the face of all the successful e-authors. My other excuse is that I want a hard-cover book in my hand, not just an e-book. I’ll stick with that for now…but we’ll see how my next proposal is received by pubs.

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