If you are a new writer,
you may have found it isn't easy penetrating the literary marketplace. The
competition is pretty tough, and if you like to write about controversial
or irregular subjects, it's even tougher. Also, with the changing economy
and the publishing houses merging with each other, their resources are running
pretty thin to be taking chances on us "greenies."
That's why I explored the option
of "self-publishing" or "subsidy publishing." This is where you pay someone
to print your book and you do all the rest of the work like editing and the
proofreading. Or some charge a fee for marketing your book. Also you can
do all illustrations and layout. It was pretty time-consuming for me, but
I maintain complete control over the content and marketing. That is an important
thing for me, as I have put a lot of work and thought into my writing and
have reasons for everything I write. If anything, the whole experience was
very educational and I had a lot of fun.
And with the advent of the Internet,
our advertising options are pretty limitless. You can build a big ol' web page
as a base of advertising, and take it from there. The whole arena of the
Internet is expanding at a phenomenal rate, so our access to a reader's market
Another point is education. I
am still, as of this writing, going through a pretty good correspondence
course (Oh, it's called "distance education" now. I guess that is to get
around the long held idea that a correspondence course is somehow "inferior"
to a classroom college course. Let me assure you, it is not) on journalism
and short story writing. It has been invaluable and extensive in opening
up the world of writing. How to approach magazines and publishers and who
does what, how the whole industry works.
This is where I took the course.
It was very good and I learned a lot pertaining to the publishing
and writing industry. The Instructors didn't mess around! I had a few of
the lessons sent back to me ungraded with a firm "do it over" along with
them. Ha! They take their work very serious. I will never forget them. The
cost was about average for a college grade course.
The outfit that printed my book
is named "Morris
Publishing" and they did a pretty good job I thought.
Their art department was very good as they had a tough situation dealing
with my artwork. But they overcame it. I was very impressed with everybody's
"yes, we can do that" attitude. They are located in Kearney, Nebraska. Click
on the MP logo to see their website!
I don't think I will ever regret
it. But if you take this road, by doing it yourself, you better think you
are good enough and your subject matter worth reading! And make sure you
have the financing to back it up. Have a game plan, a plan of attack.
These are a few U.S. government
links you can check out to see how a self-publisher has to go through the
process to secure a copyright for their literary work. It's pretty interesting
reading! It took me about six months to get the official copyright form back
in the mail, but they answered my e-mail very promptly when I asked them
what happened to my submission.
This is the United States Copyright Office Homepage.
This is the U.S. Library of Congress Homepage.
I hope this has been
a little help if you are a writer who is looking for different options. There
are usually ways around the "mainstream" way of doing things. When you walk
with God, you learn that as long as you are alive and breathing there is
a way out of any impossible situation; no "one" way of accomplishing and
conquering the objective. As long as you aren't dead, you keep fighting.
Adapt, adjust, improvise--overcome! But hey, that's what being a Christian--what
Salem the Soldier, is all about.
For further information, please contact the author.
1997-2010 © Michael A. Baker ~ All Rights Reserved.