Sometimes we don’t feel like real writers unless we are published commercially. That means that we need the affirmation of a ‘real’ publisher to tell us that we are good writers.
A ‘real’ publisher has access to book distribution channels, print-on-demand (POD) does not have that – yet. However Ebooks are listed on Amazon and other electronic booksellers, right along with NY Times best sellers.
Will a ‘real’ publisher advertise your books? Yes, if you’re name is John
Grisham. No, if your name is John Smith. “You’re on your own, John,” just like you are with POD and Ebooks.
If your book doesn’t sell, a ‘real’ publisher will not do a second run. I’ve known of writers who couldn’t even find a copy of their books anywhere. POD and Ebooks live as long as the author wants them to live.
In general, Ebooks and POD are less expensive than commercially published books. More people can afford them.
I am not predicting the end of commercial publishers. Printed books will be around for a long, long time. I am saying that it’s a very exciting time for us writers. “Getting published” used to be very hard. Now it’s open to all of us. Yes, there is crap out there in Ebooks and POD, just as there is crap in commercially published books.
In the past, the publishing industry looked down on POD, hinting that it wasn’t very good. As Ebooks and POD rise, I think both parts of the publishing world will see that we need each other.
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