Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Reading, Writing, and Publishing ~

Do Authors Still Need Publishers?


I can hear some folks saying, “Hell, No!!”, and some others saying, “Of, course.”.

Yes, I put a trailing period on that last sentence—I’m a maverick

Maverick enough to be “nearly” self-published—using FastPencil which is a “publishing-aide” company, not legacy.

If you want to see other posts we’ve had here on this topic, just click “Publishing” and “Self-Publishing” in the Top Tags widget in the left side-bar

One that might be of particular interest is, Is How To Publish Really Hard To Decide?, because I say:

“I’m sorry if the title of this post misled you into thinking I was going to give you a cut-and-dried, simple, formulaic method for deciding which path to take in the publishing arena—things are changing, new methods are proliferating, the economy is tossing methods and people and companies every whichway…”

Just to give you even more to consider, try reading the following two articles on Digital Book World:

What’s the Point of Publishers in a Digital Age?

What’s The Point of Publishers in a Digital Age: Response

The first ends with:

“The love/hate relationship between authors and publishers has endured for over a century. Digital self-publishing and e-books represent wonderful new opportunities. But, the power of new technology is no match against the power of human nature. Therefore, publishers need not fear extinction. The literary ecosystem is bound by an unseen force that affects every author. What’s the point of publishers? To exist and thrive by keeping the author ego healthy and alive.”

The second ends with:

“Ego doesn’t pay the mortgage.  An author more concerned with ego than business is looking for a job.  I submit that the point of publishers in a digital age is to partner with authors in a fair royalty scheme so that all the players in the business are committed to getting books from the content creators, Authors, to the content consumers, readers.  All must bring value to the table in one form or another.”

The first is by Rob Eagar—founder of WildFire Marketing, a consulting practice that helps authors and publishers sell more books and “spread their message like wildfire”.

The second is by Bob Mayer—New York Times bestselling author with over 50 books published.

I dare ya to read both articles, ponder the pros and cons, and try to arrive at a simple Yes or No answer to the title of this post
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