This isn’t like a, “they’re cheap! Come take advantage of them! Mwhahaha!” Thing. But, on average, self pubbed titles do tend to be very reasonably priced. And if it’s a good book or an author you like, then it’s good to know that they get the majority of the profit from your sale. If you’re prepared to research the titles through reviews, friend recommendations or the good press from other self pubbed authors you like, then these books can be a very reliable, inexpensive way to source your reading material.
2. When they’re good – they’re really good
Professional self-pubbed authors put a lot of work into their product. These books are being increasingly picked up and signed by traditional publishers. Easy by Tamara Webber, an amazing contemporary young adult novel that Steph and I recently review is now being published by Berkley group, Penguin. There’s a whole bevy of fantastic, quality books if you’re willing to go find them. There’s a stigma amongst readers that self-pubbed titles are all just rejects by hacks who couldn’t make the cut in traditional publishing. But anybody who makes a habit of reading self-published titles can refute this claim. Just as with traditional publishing- there is garbage.
But there is also a lot more competition. Self published titles have to compete not just amongst themselves but with their traditional counterparts. It’s sink or swim in an arena where it is all too easy to sink. The ones that do survive have certainly earned their place and a healthy dose of respect.
3. They’re generally more widely available
Many self published titles are lendable through Kindle, or you can wait until the author has a sale. Some even do days where they give them away for free. Most self-pubbed authors upload their books to a variety of sites like Amazon, Smashwords and other hosting sites – giving you a wide variety of choices for where you want to spend your money.
For those overseas, self-published titles are very rarely restricted for your territory. No more of Amazon not selling you a book because you were born on the wrong continent. Many of them are also DRM free and they’re thus easier to use on your various devices without locking you down.
4. They provide necessary stories that otherwise wouldn’t be published
Just to be clear – this isn’t a gate keeper rant. Editors, publishers and agents want to publish great books. They have to do that whilst making money. If a book is good, but not commercial, that’s not necessarily anybody’s fault – but it also means it’s not generally going to be able to be traditionally published.
The publisher has a set number of units they need to sell, and they need to do that by appealing to the widest swath of their demographic. The freedom in self publishing is that the author doesn’t necessarily need to do that. This is where niches form for those smaller, more concentrated markets. A nice that might be nice and comfortably sized for a self-published author, even it it’s not enough for a big publisher.
Genres that are considered either dying or dead like Dystopian, horror, chick lit, gothics and westerns and more are either no longer being published by the big houses. But what about those that still really want to read these genres? What do they do? What about genres that don’t really exist – like New Adult. There’s really only one place to get most of these right now – so if your tastes run toward the eclectic, then welcome to the wonder world of self publishing!
Check it out and you may just be surprised at what you find!