Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Reading, Writing, and Publishing ~

Publishing Article Round-Up ~ “Must Reads” for Writers

I scan scads of blog and news articles every month looking for resources to share on this blog.

I usually choose one article to feature (adding my comments) or perhaps two that contrast in interesting ways.

Today, I’m sharing four and one of them contains nine more :-)

The first one is from Michael Levin, one of the most established ghostwriters in the USA, New York Times best-selling author, with more than 100 books. His article is called Why Won’t First Time Authors Ever Avoid The Humiliation Of New York Publishing.

Here are a few snippets to entice you to take the link and read the full article:

“The first sign that the publishing industry has little regard for newcomers is the miniscule or even non-existent advances on offer today.  I’ve seen celebrities and CEOs whose names you would recognize offered from zero to $5,000 for their books and I’ve seen them take those deals.”

“The next insult occurs when you don’t get your contract practically until the date your manuscript is due.  Publishers’ attorneys are either the most backed-up or the laziest creatures in that entire miserable profession (I can make as much fun of lawyers as I want because I am one).”

There are more insults in Mr. Levin’s article and it quickly becomes apparent how valuable all the Self-Publishing opportunities are

The next offering is on truthdig, is by Susan Zakin (author of The Afterlife of Victor Kamara, a novel about identity in a globalizing world), and has the title Reports of Publishing’s Death Are Exaggerated (a lengthy but fascinating piece).


“Many people think publishing isn’t a business at all. Book publishing is a clubby, insular world where everyone knows one another and started as an eager 22-year-old fresh out of Vassar.”

“The culture of book publishing is one reason for its current woes….it’s hard to tell whether vulture capitalism will mend publishing’s problems or make them worse.”

“Writers would be better off turning their considerable energy toward sussing out the business of publishing. As recently as 10 years ago, good writers could support themselves from their writing. Now many of them can’t. Until a new ecology of publishing is invented that offers decent wages and opportunity, articles and short stories will not be written, and books that you might have loved will not get published.”

Even more reason to explore the proliferating world of Self-Publishing, since, to me, the changes traditional publishing is facing and that Zakin explores in her article could take a long time to occur[This link will take you to the 69 posts about Self-Publishing on this blog]

The next article I’ll share comes from Minnesota Public Radio’s Site and is called Self-publishing your book: 5 benefits, 3 drawbacks.

I’ll list the benefits and drawbacks but you’ll have to take the link to find out what they say :-):


1. Higher royalty rates

2. You can bypass traditional publishers

3. You can be a control freak

4. Your book gets more time to catch on

5. You can control costs


1. Publishers already have a platform

2. A “tsunami of swill” online

3. Publishers can make your book better

I don’t agree with everything said in this article but it is worth considering

The last article is from Jane Friedman and this link will take you to the 14 other posts here that featured her

Her article is called Best Business Advice for Writers and I’ll list the titles of the articles she links to but, again, you’ll have to go there to take the links and enjoy the articles :-)

* How an Enterprising Author Sold a Million Self-Published Books
* How Readers Discovered a Debut Novel: A Case Study
* Facebook: Best Practices for Profiles, Pages, Groups, and Posts
* Mustering the Courage to Turn Down a Publishing Contract
* Top 5 Goals for Your Book or E-Book Cover
* Publishers Brace for Authors to Reclaim Book Rights in 2013
* A New (Free) Way to Sell Books From Your Sidebar
* Who Pays Writers
* BookBaby Partners with Bound Book Scanning to Convert Print Books into eBooks

If you visit any of the articles featured in this post, it would be Great if you shared your impressions in the Comments :-)
Our Comment Link Is At The Top of The Post :-)
For Private Comments, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com
* Google Author Page

2 responses to “Publishing Article Round-Up ~ “Must Reads” for Writers

  1. Barbara Blackcinder December 10, 2012 at 6:38 pm

    With 85 links on this single blog, perhaps we should start referring to you as the spider of publishing links? I feel like a hapless fly trying to get through them sometimes… LOL


    • Alexander M Zoltai December 10, 2012 at 6:53 pm

      I wonder how many links there are on all the blogs in the world ?


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