Another submission or publish?

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Question time!

So, I told you all about my recent events with trying to get a short story published.  Well I’ve since submitted said short story to another online publication, who promptly got back to me with another, WAIT FOR IT…. No.

Once again, my hopes have been no less diminished than the first time a publisher said no.  However, I was thinking about the idea of not publishing it anywhere and not getting paid for it.  Rather, I was thinking about self publishing it somewhere, and then putting it on here as a free to download ebook!

It’s not that I don’t want to keep trying to get it published by somewhere, I just get bored with repetition, and I think that if I just do my own thing right off the bat, I will spare myself.

So, what do you guys think?  Ring in your answers!  Am I being too rash in my decision  or do you guys think it’s a good idea?  I’m trying to use this as a small step towards my ultimate goal, and as a possible means to getting feedback about the story.  Let me know!

Cheers!

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16 thoughts on “Another submission or publish?

  1. I read somewhere recently ( http://letswriteashortstory.com/) that self publishing doesn’t work because it’s been done too many times. Which is frustrating, because it was what I was considering too.
    There are writing forums that I have looked into, but many of them seem to be groups that have already been formed, and it seems like it is difficult to get into.
    What we all need to think of is a new way to get noticed.
    However, give it a go. You never know, and if you don’t MIND not making money on your story, then what have you got to lose?

    • Hey thanks for the like and info. I had a feeling that was the direction that self publishing was going, but I really want to get a publisher to fall head over heels for one of my stories anyways. In this particular situation, I’m really just wondering if it is worth the time to self publish it as bait to attract readers to my blog/social networking circle.

      Guess I could have said that initially!

  2. I’ll tell you of my experience–not to be construed as advice 🙂 I sent out ~200 queries for my first novel: a terrorist/espionage/romance novel. Didn’t have any luck getting an agent, so I decided to self-publish my second novel: “The Home Place.” I did so for several reasons: I hoped that it would sell well enough to attract an agent or publisher and also because I had a niche market due to location of setting. It was based on true event. Actually, I looked on it as a giant publicity campaign. I did very well at book signings at Barnes and Noble stores in the north metro Atlanta area, had two front page and inside pages newspaper stories written about it, a two-page book review in a high-gloss, 6500 subscriber regional magazine (Southern Distinction), was selected by the Atlanta PBS/NPR radio outlet for their 2007 Suggested Reading List, asked to appear on 4 radio shows, and had several more mentions/reviews in newspaper and other print publications. In short, I think I got as much “face time” as a self-published author could expect, with the exception of somone who has built-in audience, such as an expert on some topic or well-known personality. However, despite all this, I could never get the all important walk-in readership that is necessary to sell a lot of books. all of this happened in the 2007-2009 period, before social media became so big (that I knew of anyway). Around 2009, I gathered copies of the aforementioned publicity and sent packets along with query letter to ~10 agents. finally, one called. Perhaps you can imagine my excitement. She wanted me to make some minor changes and she sent the revised book off to–the best I can tell–about 6 editors at major publishing houses. The feedback I received varied widely and I sometimes wondered whether the editors had read the book or just perused a few sections. After several phone calls with said agent and she felt comfortable with me, she opened up and I realized that she basically had a negative personality–such as whining about authors expecting her to read manuscripts for free, complaints about editors at pub houses, etc. Since the book was in her hands, I stopped actively promoting. Although she and I still talk occasionally, I am now getting another query package together to send to other agents. I’ve written another book since then and am working on a SF, a new genre for me. but, with the concept I have, I think it will give me the best chance for at least getting looked at.

    I did not use any of the vanity presses or those companies that do everything for you. I paid a local printer to make the cover for me then hired a printing/publishing company in NYC to print the book and ship it to me. I did everything a regular publisher would do.

    I enjoyed the experience of selling books, meeting people, doing the radio shows, etc, and this is from a guy who has a history of panic attacks. Who knew, 🙂 If you have a niche market that would help you immensely as I’m sure you know. No need for me to go into the pros and cons because you/ve probably gone over those a thousand times. Just thought maybe my exp might help you. Good luck and feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

  3. When you say feedback, what do you mean? Because if you’re looking for ways to still improve the story, then it’s probably not ready to be published, if we’re being perfectly honest. Try signing up for a writer’s critique group, or finding local writers to work with.
    If, on the other hand, you’re simply looking for an audience, then you have to ask yourself, what kind of audience are you hoping to reach? Different readers find work in different ways, and you’ll have to consider how that works with what you’re trying to accomplish.
    Unfortunately, there are never really complete answers… 😦

    • Well, the problem that I run into on a day to day basis is that everybody that has ever read my story has either one, not read a lot of fantasy, or two isn’t a writer. Ergo, as far as feedback goes, I’m hoping to get the true critique that I’m sure my writing style needs, because all of the other people only pick out things like grammar or punctuation and then tell me, “Hey, I really like it though!”, or they tell me it is a great story.

      And being the cynical being that I am, I have a rather hard time believing this, despite how damn cocky I can be!

      But yeah, I’m also looking to increase my audience.

      • Have you considered online critique sites such as Scribophile? It allows writers to read and really indepth critique writing in the genres they find interesting. Otherwise, local writer’s groups can be helpful, but only if they understand what you’re trying to do. I’ve been lucky living in a mountain town where there are several awesome writers groups dedicated to different aspects of craft, genre, etc.

        As for the publishing thing though, don’t submit stuff you don’t feel is finished to litmags. You’re just going to give yourself a headache that way. Try online critique sites first, and be sure you’re really comfortable with the work you’ve produced.

        And if you do produce something that you are pretty sure is finished and still can’t find a place for it in the traditional marketplace, I’d say that’s the point where you go self-pub, self-market, self everything. 😀

        Even then, it’s harder to go it alone, and if you can have good writing buddies to fall back on editing and marketing-wise, it’s going to help you a lot!

        Anyways, good luck on this journey. I know we all need that!

      • Truthfully, no, I hadn’t really considered it. Again, bit of a cynic when it comes to trusting people. Way I see it, is that if I have it already published it’s set in stone mine.

        Where as, if I showcase it at something like a writer’s group, how do you know someone won’t gank your idea?

      • It’s a gain/loss decision you’ll have to make for yourself. Sure, there might be people on a writer’s site who are just out to steal other people’s hard work, but I’ve never run into one. Every writer I know is more interested in developing their own ideas. And then there’s the fact that if you never show it to fellow writers, how are you ever going to get the feedback you want?

  4. forgingshadows

    You could always try Mythic Scribes, it’s a fantasy fiction setting for people who want to exhibit their work and get critiques. The usefulness of the critiques will vary, since we’re all at different stages of our writing lives, but you may find some people on there who can give you good advice, especially if you ask for a beta reader.

    I know there are others out there who would be willing to critique your work, and not steal it. Like avib said, most of us have too much going on in our own heads that we won’t be looking to “borrow” from others.

    Anyway, here’s the link: http://mythicscribes.com/

    Good luck on your work!

  5. One of the ezine editors I follow recently wrote about the woes of getting published vs self-publishing. She said that you should decide what you want to do, and do it. Settling for self-publishing when you really want traditional publication is like comparing apples and oranges, and anyway, if that wasn’t your goal to begin with, why are you settling?

    • And that’s why your brilliant, young lady. Thanks for cutting the fat away so to speak! I’ve always dreamed that I would be one of those authors that a publisher just falls head over heels for, and the thought of self-publishing all of my writing does seem like I’m just giving up.

      However, at times I think it would be nice to just make a story and self-publish it so that the few people that really follow me could truly take something away from the experience.

      Either way I decide, thanks for you affirmation!

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