The surprising careers of self-published writers like Amanda Hocking and John Locke may raise as many questions as answers.
It is, by all accounts, a remarkable story. A 20-something writer is rejected by so many publishing houses that she finally sails right past them – straight up the charts and into the record books, rapidly propelling her self-published e-books on to sales of 500,000-plus. There’s talk of movie rights, more books, and then the e-book indie queen announces she’s coming out with four new books published by – you guessed it – a traditional publishing house.
The indie phenom and e-book millionaire is, of course, 26-year-old Amanda Hocking, who’s made publishing history with her self-published “Trylle Trilogy” series, young-adult paranormal fiction available for download for between $0.99 and $2.99. Her new project: a four-book series called “Watersong,” for which she’s recently closed a $2-million deal with St. Martin’s Press.
Why the move?
“I only want to be a writer,” Hocking says. “I do not want to spend 40 hours a week handling e-mails, formatting covers, finding editors, etc. Right now, being me is a full-time corporation.”
Hocking’s story has raised new questions about the choice writers now have: self-publishing versus traditional publishing. Each route carries with it its own recommendations and baggage. Writers and publishers are only just beginning to consider the impact self-publishing has had on the industry.
Here’s a closer look at that choice and the questions it’s raising:
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