Saturday, January 12, 2013

Traditional or Indie by Margot Justes

To get an agent, or not get an agent? To submit to the big publishing houses or go indie? To wait months for a response, or maybe not at all from said agent or publisher? Or not?  Those are the questions. (To paraphrase the Bard)

There is a revolution going on in the publishing industry. The continuous debate on whether to self publish or go the traditional route is ongoing, but Amazon, Kobo and Barnes & Noble have made it easy to self publish. What to do?
Not an easy question, even though the indie world has become more acceptable, there is still that reservation that the book isn’t as good, and is not edited, but the lingering doubt is getting smaller. Many best sellers are going the indie route, granted they have an established readership, but they help the rest of the indie authors in the process.

Once I regained rights to my first novel, I made a conscious effort to go my own way. I was grateful for the experience, because I learned a lot about the business, but ultimately I don’t have the patience to send query letters and submissions and wait months to hear back.
There is a certain lack of civility in the submission process, a writer will submit a query, or a requested manuscript and never hear back from the editor or agent. It’s huge process and literally thousands of submission reach the respective desks every day, but how difficult is it to set an automatic response that states ‘thanks, but no thanks’.

Maybe my age has something to do with it, maybe the fact that I write niche stories, about travel, art and a bit of mayhem but mostly romance, has something to do with it. Marketability is the name of the game, and my style may not reach the mass audiences a big house expects. They need to make money to stay in business. That is a given.  
There is the need to copy the best sellers, have a similar voice because that is what sells. I was once told by an editor that I had to have an original voice, and in the same breath I was asked who do I write like?  Well, I write like me.

Publishing is a business, and if they can’t make money they won’t stay in business for long. In a mass market, they must sell what the public wants to read. On the other hand, I’m delighted that the indie world is getting bigger by leaps and bounds, because I can choose to go my own way.
I pitched my paranormal. It’s an incredibly nerve wracking process...this pitching least for me. I was asked for a full manuscript, and I submitted it. I think it was done to prove I could follow through and do it. I did it. One pitch, and one submission for my vampire Nikolai, and I’m done.

The writing and publishing world is fascinating, creative and crazy. I love being a part of it.
Margot Justes
A Hotel in Paris
Hearts & Daggers
Hot Crimes Cool Chicks
and coming soon A Hotel in Bath



Debra St. John said...

I don't have a problem with indie publishing. I think it's definitely a legitimate way to get published and get your books out there. The only reason I would never consider it for myself is the time involved in making it work. I barely have enough time to get stories written in between bouts of 'real life'. Adding getting it ready for publication on my own would just put me over the edge.

(And I'm still waiting with bated breath to read that vampire novel!)

Margot Justes said...

I agree about the process, but I have talented people helping me out. You know what a luddite I am, anything technical scares me. The professional edit is a must and goes without saying. So far I love it. Nikolai will be out sometime this year.

Morgan Mandel said...

It's wonderful we have a choice, and we can even do both if we wish!

Morgan Mandel

Deb Larson said...

What wonderful news! I feel frozen in what to do next. I keep inching my way toward indie publishing but have yet to commit.
DL Larson