Traditional vs. Self-Publishing: What’s best?

The big debate among writers latest is: Which is best–Traditional publishing with a book contract through an established publisher or setting your own terms through self-publishing?

Honestly, I don’t think there’s a right or wrong answer. There are so many variables when it comes to publishing, so many individual problems and nuances, so many chance happenings that it’s impossible to know what is best, or even if you’ve made the right choice for both you and your book. Like most things in life, I think we authors tend to cross our fingers (and our toes), offer prayers to the gods of the muses, and wing it the best we can.

I tackled this subject in a guest post in Self Publish Bible (thanks so much, Lorena!). Yet there is so much more to say.

I published through a traditional house: Grand Central Publishing in New York, and it’s been a positive experience the whole way. I trust my editor, Beth deGuzman, and the help and guidance from my publicist and also copy editor (thanks, Marissa and Scott) has been invaluable.

Yet a friend of mine, Nikki Jefford, chose to self-publish her young adult book series, and she’s doing fabulously. (You can hear more about this when Nikki guest posts later this month.) She’s thriving. It’s as if she’s finally found her niche in life. Would she feel the same way if she had published through a traditional publisher? I dunno. Maybe. And then again, maybe not.

Sometimes I think that what maters is the end is not how we publish but that we publish, that we get our words out in the world, that we believe in our books and find them worthy enough to release to the public.

Anyone have any comments on the traditional vs. self-published debate? Feel free to discuss in the comments section or zap me an email (see the Contacts page).  I’d love to hear your side.


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