Two roads diverged in a yellow wood
And, knowing I could not travel both,
But being a writer, long I stood,
And looked down both, as far as I could
At all the stuff in the undergrowth.
And then I came here to tell you about it.
Actually, starting out as a young writer, I never seriously considered self-publishing. Thirty years ago, that wasn’t an obvious path. True, some writers, even back then, published with “vanity presses” or simply paid a printer to print copies of their book which they then went about peddling to stores. But before the advent of online print-on-demand services and e-books, it was seen as a sort of last-ditch option for people who couldn’t hope to get their books accepted by a traditional publisher. The expense and effort involved was rarely worth it for most writers.
Today it’s a different world — a world of social media, self-promotion, e-books, and widespread self-publishing. I’m definitely biased in favour of traditional publishing but I can see some advantages and disadvantages to both platforms and I respect writers’ decisions to self-publish. Even for me, there are situations in which I might just consider releasing a self-published e-book … but you’ll have to wait to hear about that!