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Micaiah

Self-publish or traditionally publish?

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I'm a complete noob to this whole writing and publishing thing and I have a 22,000 word novella that I'm going to publish after I edit it. I've read internet post after internet post and they almost all disagree. I don't have a platform of any sort so I assume that would make it harder to traditionally publish...?

#Needhelp #Don'tknowwhattodo #Publishingiscomplicated

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You will need some kind of author platform either way. My advice is to start your platform now before you ever publish. While you research which is right for you (traditional publishing or self-publishing), and while you are editing your book. This gives you a perfect opportunity to set up your platform. The earlier you start, the better! 

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Unfortunately, it will make it harder no matter how you publish it. If you're not connected to a circle of people, how will they know you or know about your book? One thing though: please contact us here on the site before you do anything. There are too many out there just ready to ponce on newbies with a scam. And many are vanity publishers. They charge a lot of money. Not good.

 

One other thing: you really need to have your MS (manuscript) professionally edited. If you don't, it will not be the best it can be. And that will really hurt you. Your reviews will not be good ones.

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2 hours ago, Micaiah said:

I have a 22,000 word novella that I'm going to publish after I edit it.

Congratulations!  That's a great accomplishment!  And it's exciting you're planning to publish!

 

I can't tell you whether to go indie or traditional because I haven't done either :)  All I can tell you is to pray about it and get other people's opinions before you make a decision.  Also, start writing your next book :D  From what I've heard, publishers love for you to have more than one written.

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7 hours ago, HK1 said:

All I can tell you is to pray about it and get other people's opinions before you make a decision.

And, as you have already discovered, there are pros and cons to either way of publishing. You will read advice both ways, and the advice on each side makes sense. And either way, you will end up doing most of the advertising yourself.

 

Edited by carolinamtne

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Guest N R
12 hours ago, Alley said:

My advice is to start your platform now before you ever publish.

wonderfully good advice.

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Guest N R
9 hours ago, HK1 said:

From what I've heard, publishers love for you to have more than one written

Doing my imitation of a former member of the forum, whenever someone said something correct...

"yup."

 

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13 hours ago, Alley said:

My advice is to start your platform now before you ever publish.

 

I think that depends on what you're writing.

 

For fiction, I think Jane Friedman sums it up nicely (for both self-published or traditional):

 

Quote

Do you need a platform to get published?

 

It depends. If you’re a fiction writer, no. Fiction writers should focus on crafting the best work possible. That’s not to say a platform is unwelcome if you have one, but an agent or publisher will make a decision first based on the quality of your manuscript and its suitability for the current marketplace. (That said, if you’re a huge celebrity or Internet star, it’s possible you’ll get a book deal based on that alone, and be paired up with a ghostwriter or publishing team to help you produce a bestselling book to take advantage of your stardom.)

 

New writers often express confusion and anxiety about their platform, especially when they have not a single book or credit to their name. Well, it’s not a mystery why platform is so confusing when you may not yet know who you are as a writer. First and foremost, platform grows out of your body of work—or from producing great work. Remember that. It’s very difficult, next to impossible, to build a platform for work that does not yet exist (unless, again, you’re some kind of celebrity).

 

That's been my experience as a self-published author, anyway. Others may have differing experiences - particularly in non-fiction.

Edited by Accord64
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@Micaiah you've already said you will have it professionally edited. I will second that move, but research your editor of choice. There are good ones and not so good ones and unfortunately you never truly know until you sign up.

 

I may suggest that you have a critique done first. Sounds silly, pay someone to read your story, but you'd be surprised at what they find and suggest.

 

Be prepared though, they will be brutally honest. It will hurt and their suggestions will hurt too. Some you will agree with and some you'll reject immediately. But give their suggestions serious consideration. A good editor is trying to make you and your book the best it can be. 

 

Do a line by line to look at sentance structure and continuity after that. Then a final pass for punctuation and spelling. 

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Guest N R
2 hours ago, Accord64 said:

If you’re a fiction writer, no. 

I cannot believe she said this, when all 5 top publishers put it in their websites they will NOT sign authors who do not have an active platform.

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I agree with zx. Get your work assessed/critiqued.

I had Demons done and it was it was incredibly helpful.  

 

The assessor pointed how I could improve it and they also feedback what worked well. Finally they gave advice on the synopsis and letter. Worth every penny.

Best of all, I now have and do

Itor/proof reader I have confidence in. 

 

 

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Actually, for a 22,000 word novella, there is no choice.  Look, no even medium publisher will want to publish it.  It's  just a fact.  But if you self-publish it, you have a chance to make it available on your platform for a way to introduce yourself.  I hope that helps.

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