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Most of you know me as a dabbler in issues relating to life as a middle-aged woman, but I’m also a writer, and I’m wondering what to do next with my book, Dakota Blues.
The manuscript is finished, and I’m ready to introduce it to the world, but given the state of the publishing industry at the moment, I’m not sure how best to go about it. So much has changed.
In the “old days” the writer would send off her completed manuscript. Then the phone would ring, champagne would flow, and the check would be cashed. If I go through the traditional process of finding an agent who finds a publisher who gets the book into bookstores, it can take a couple of years. Who knows what the publishing industry will look like by then? At the rate publishers and bookstores are going under, my book could get buried under the rubble of yet another bankruptcy.
On the other hand, if I publish it myself, it could be available in a few months. I’d have to market it myself, of course, but more and more, authors are expected to do all that anyway. I’d have more upfront expenses, but I’d keep a higher percentage of the sales. If there are any. Worst case scenario, at least there would be an actual book to prove to family and friends that I really was working on one these past few years.
As a third alternative, I’m tempted to sit on the manuscript a while until I see how things shake out. Also, I’m eager to start my second book which, like Dakota Blues, is about a woman who’s been sleepwalking through her life and awakens to find she’s middle aged! I’m calling it Stockholm Summer.
Do you have any thoughts on whether I should go the traditional route or self-publish? Sit on it or shoot it out there? Thanks for helping me with this.