"A cat has absolute emotional honesty: human beings, for one reason or another, may hide their feelings but a cat does not." -Ernest Hemingway

Monday, March 21, 2011

Self-Publishing an E-book: Is It a Sign of Laziness or Something Else?

Last week we explored becoming published and some of the things I’ve learned from authors who have traveled the road to publication.  If you missed it, (click here).  This week we’re exploring another path to publication, self-publishing an E-book, and whether or not it’s a sign of laziness or something else.

Today, thanks to the speed of technology and easy access to self-publishing an E-book there are some people out there whom consider themselves to be an author because they managed to write a story in a week or two, throw together a book cover (or not), download their masterpiece and viola they are now published.  Technically speaking, they are right, they are published.  But are they willing to do what it takes to really be a published author?  In other words, are they going to dedicate the endless hours of self-promotion and networking it takes to sell even one book.

Self-publishing is nothing new, only the ease of it is because of the growing fascination of E-books, many writers have been self-publishing for years and many of them are quite good and prove it through their loyal fan base.  How?  First, and foremost, they write good books and secondly, they do what any author who wants to be successful does, they spend a painstakingly amount of unpaid hours, sometimes at the sacrifice of a personal life, to make a name for themselves.

So that leads us into the title of this week’s topic:  Is self-publishing an E-book a sign of laziness or something else? 

Sure you’re always going to have a small percentage of self-published E-books out there that most people wouldn’t even let their child turn in as their seventh grade English Lit class assignment due to it being given an “F” grade; however, what you are going to find is a good percentage of E-books that the writer took many months or longer to write, polish, re-write and polish some more all before even having it edited.  That’s right, I said edited.  Both line editing and copy editing.  Then a professional book cover designer is hired to create the perfect cover and viola the book is uploaded and the writer has a published book. 

What sets the writers apart?  The small percentage of them who threw their book together in hopes of making the vast fortunes they read about making as a self-published E-book author sit back every day and check their sales numbers and wonder why no one is ordering their world’s fastest written book, after all, everyone is reading E-books these days while the other percentage who diligently sought out their dream of one day telling their story will be too busy doing guest blog tours, virtual book tours and following up with all their networking contacts they made prior to the release of their book to idly sit by everyday checking their sales stats.  After all, they are an author.  These are the authors who will continue to lead the way for the future of self-publication. 

There’s a lot of talk these days about the changing world of publishing and how traditional publishing may be in jeopardy thanks to E-books. It is my belief we are on the verge of the next publishing evolution one where the two will co-exist in an ever changing world of technology, they’ll have to if either one wants to survive.  What you don’t hear a lot about is the revival of the entrepreneurial spirit, that inner drive to self-succeed no matter what.  After all, what’s more important than fulfilling your life’s dream? 

The entrepreneurial spirit has always been at the forefront of any changing environment, it’s the steam that drives the engine full speed ahead into the next evolution.  It’s also a sign of a successful self-published author.  How about you, are you ready for the next evolution?  

In the next couple of weeks, The Unknown Author will proudly host guest authors to discuss the release of their debut novels.  Each author has a unique story to tell and their books are a must read.  I’ll let you guess who was self-published and who wasn’t. 

Next week, we’ll be exploring the writer’s life and what it means to be one.

Until then,

T.K. Millin
The Unknown Author  


  1. Good luck in what will become!
    I found you through book blogs!
    Will you follow me?

  2. Thank you and yes I have joined your blog family. Your blog, Magical Urban Fantasy Reads, is now a recommended book review site of T.K. Millin's!