The Story of Self-Publishing

While the success of Hugh Howey–top-selling book sales, movie deal, major print-only contracts–has garnered increasing media attention, those who still wish to denigrate self-publishing are quick to say, “But he’s special!  He’s an outlier!  One success doesn’t mean anyone else can succeed!”*

Howey takes that on himself here, and it is a marvelous piece.

I didn’t step into self-publishing with the expectation of becoming the next multi-million dollar success.  I wanted people to read what I wrote.  I wanted to earn a little money from doing what I enjoy.  Self-publishing was the way to do it.  I don’t have to worry about whether my publisher will follow through on commitments, keep the work in print, contract with shell companies in order to reduce my royalties to pennies, or sell the right to publish my work to another company as part of a bankruptcy deal.

I’d rather everything be all my fault.  Fail or succeed–it’s all my fault.  Self-responsibility produces less anxiety than lack of control, and far less than learned helplessness.


*This is a variant of the snobbish, “Who do you think you are?” which is more often a finger-pointing way of saying, “Don’t you know who I am?”

2 thoughts on “The Story of Self-Publishing”

  1. It amazes me to see some of the negativity towards self-publishers out there. Almost all if it is unsubstantiated and probably based off of one bad $0.99 purchase.

  2. Oh, there is plenty of dreck out there, and I can completely understand the rejection of poor quality self-published material. But that confuses the content with the means of delivery. Bad writing is bad writing. Good storytelling is good storytelling. The method of publication doesn’t change that. But the method changes the level of participation and reward of the writer.

    So I can understand the negativity directed toward really bad writing. What I don’t understand is rejection of the delivery method.

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