Regular readers, new readers, people who lurk…I’m breaking the fourth wall, sort of. I need some advice. An Advice Hot Dog, even.

You see, there is a small indie publisher who may be interested in my work. Very small. Like they just started up six months ago and are trying to build their catalog.

I’d have to do some of my own promoting and it would be e-book only, but I’d have their support as far as covers, editing, formatting, etc. They’d distribute, promote and basically do whatever it is publishers do but because they’re very new and indie I’d have to help them with it. That’s okay with me, at least for the time being.

My other option is to send out queries to possible agents to see what they think of this book. I’ve already sent out a few but it’s not very encouraging, as the majority of them say they only get new clients through recommendations from others. I still have a couple out, though.

This is where the advice comes in. What should I do? Should I go with the indie and get my foot in the door? Should I wait to see what the agents say? By the time the agents come back, there’s the possibility submissions will be closed for the indie (they don’t have a huge staff, so that happens in order for them to catch up) and I’ll be screwed from both ends. Of course I’m going to ask Mister E about all this but I’d really love your take on things too. Leave any further advice in the comments also, please!

Thank you! I really appreciate your help!


4 thoughts on “Advice!

  1. Hi Nat. This is strictly as a reader, I have no writer experience. But do you know where i have have gotten ALL of my indie references/purchases in the last year? Twitter. From the author. Not the publisher. And I buy a LOT of Kindle books. Market yourself. You are good at it. Sounds like you would be doing it anyway. Without being locked in.. Just MHO. πŸ™‚

    • The only problem with that is that I’m not willing to turn my Twitter stream into a wave of advertisements like some people. I’d lose some of the few followers I have, and I’d rather not be That Guy. I don’t get many RTs about my books, either, and very few people click through to buy them. If I had a publisher or agent to help with that, I’d get more of a network that I could use.

      The plus to having editors/publishers is that I wouldn’t have to deal with the twitchy shit that takes me forever; editing, creating covers or paying someone to do it, marketing, etc. I’m fine with submitting to review sites or occasionally tweeting, but I’d really love someone to take the burden off me. I could pay people to edit and such for me, but that would cost over a thousand dollars. Self-publishing, if you want to make sure you have a good product, is really expensive. I know my book would have benefited from some serious editing by a professional but with the length of it, it would have cost me – no joke – six hundred dollars for proofing and copy editing.

      It’s so awesome that you buy indie books and support authors! Did you ever read Plans? What did you think of it?

  2. From what I’ve been reading lately (and unfortunately not from personal experience), it sounds like even traditional publishers expect authors to do a lot of their own marketing, maybe even all of it. Thus, I wouldn’t count that against the small publisher. The real question, though, is what do you get for whatever you give? I assume the small publisher would take some portion of earnings, but the details could vary widely. For whatever you give up (money, control, etc.), you have to make sure that what you get back is worth it. There are a lot of ways of analyzing that. You can evaluate hard monetary numbers (revenue, costs, & profits), you can factor in the “soft”/intangible aspects like the value of support (i.e., not going it alone), and so forth. Naturally, you’ll never have enough information to be completely confident in your decision (because that’s just how the universe works, IMHO), so it’s also important to add: Good luck! πŸ™‚

    • The promotion isn’t something I worry too much about, apart from not wanting to turn my Twitter into a spammy promo account. I’m mainly interested in the other things they provide like cover art, marketing, editing, getting me reviews on sites, and writing copy and press releases. The twitchy stuff I hate doing, in other words.
      Honestly I think that the benefit there outweighs the risk, especially since going right now I’m selling very little and making even less money.

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