I'm a little behind the wave, but have you all heard of Amanda Hocking? She's the hot new chat piece on the Interwebz. The 26-year-old is selling bonkers amounts of self-published books and e-books. I haven't read her stuff, but it's supposed to be good. Try as I might, paranormal/fantasy/magic is just not my bag of chips. I couldn't even get through all the Harry Potter books (I KNOW, I KNOW, BLASPHEME). I just... need to read about people doing things that aren't magical. My friend once tried to get me to read something involving elves and sex, swearing it was essentially chick lit beneath the fantasy veil. But I was all, "Just get rid of the elves, then!" I'm a simple creature.
Anyway, I'm sure Amanda's books are wonderful for paranormal fans, and I like reading her blog. She kind of has a "PEOPLE, CHILL OUT, IT'S GONNA BE FINE" attitude, which I admire.
People, including Nathan Bransford, are weighing in about self-publishing and whether it poses a threat to the traditional publishing industry. I don't really know, because that is not my job. All I know is, I want to write books one way or another. I also like chocolate and rap music and buying things on sale. I never really considered self-publishing before. It would still take a lot for me to go that route and abandon the traditional query-agony-hope-rejection-tears-wine methods, because I believe they ultimately work.
Ok, part of me kind of gets it.
Business models and sales figures aside, right? I'm talking mental health. Say you can't sell your book. At all. You've tried and tried and tried and no one will sniff at it. You could, A) stick your manuscript in the drawer and let those icky silverfish things nest in it, find it five years later and be forced to burn it in the extermination home-tenting process. Or, B) publish that shit yourself, give copies to your mom and your dentist and stick it on the shelf between Bridget Jones's Diary and, you know, The Grapes of Wrath or whatever.
I guess if it came to that, I'd just rather see it on a shelf at Mom's house.