Book Beat Babes

Book Beat Babes

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Indie or Traditional by Margot Justes

Much has been written and debated about indie or traditional publishing. There is no perfect solution, it is up to the individual writer to decide which way to go. Neither are easy. A writer can submit to an agent, or go directly to the publishing house. Some houses require an agent, others do not. That research should be done by the writer.

Getting an agent is not easy, and there will be many rejections. The process is subjective, one agent will hate it, another will love it, and between that time of hate and love, the rejections mount up.

Once you get an agent, a contract needs to be signed. I firmly believe that a literary attorney should review it. An agent will attempt to sell your book to the publisher, and once sold, there is another  contract to sign, and same proviso should apply, a literary attorney should review the publishing contract.

There is a great deal of information available about agents and publishers and their submission requirements. Do your research before you proceed. There is no point in submitting to an agency that only handles non-fiction when you write romance.

Let’s say you have an agent, and the manuscript is sold. A writer still needs to do the marketing and promotion, while the editing, cover art, all those lovely things will be done by the publisher.

The indie route places a lot more responsibility on you, the writer. Again, a good product is a must, a good editor is also a must. A requirement. You, as the writer have complete say in your cover, your back page, getting your book out, and all the marketing and promotions. There are editing and formatting, and cover art costs.  Unless you feel well equipped to do all of it.

I have a formatter, a cover artist, and a fabulous editor.

In both cases indie and traditional, you must have a website, a blog, or two or three, and the required social media outlets.

I’ve been with a small traditional press, and once I regained the right to my first novel, I went indie. I like it that way. I like the freedom. It’s an uphill battle, but I found it is better to work for myself. Amazon pays royalties monthly, and sales are clear cut. I have a long way to go, before I can make a living writing, but progress is being made.

One author whose blogs I would recommend if you want to go the indie route is Joe Konrath. His blogs are helpful, and a tremendous asset to an indie writer. He’s articulate and upfront about the writing business.

Margot  Justes
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  1. For me I am happy with my small press. It's not that I have anything against indie publishing, I think people who do it are amazing, but I simply don't have the time to tackle that step of it myself. So, I do the writing and promotion and let someone else do the publishing!

  2. Indie is great, as long as you do it right! There are some who cut corners and give indies a bad name. I enjoy being an indie, but am well aware of the responsibilities and accept them.

  3. I'm still undecided at which I prefer. My first 2 were small presses and I liked that. Then my third, I did indie and it seems an unending responsibility with little help. I'm still trying to get a footing on promoting my book. The 12 week book blog tour was wonderful for a start, but now what? Finding time to work on my next book and promote this one is a big task!

  4. Ladies,
    The lovely part of this business, is that we now have a choice, and it's ours to make. I still had to do all the promo with the publisher. Mine is a niche market, but I'm slowly building a readership, and I prefer to be on my own.