Many new authors wonder if self-publishing counts as being published. The team at Izzard Ink explains below why some people think self-publishing doesn’t count as being self-published and how perceptions have changed over the years.
What Is Publishing?
At one time, self-publishing was unusual and uncommon. Most books that you would find in bookstores and libraries had been published by traditional large publishing houses. The dawn of the internet and the ease with which authors could self-publish books helped bring about a change, however, especially because now authors can produce e-books, avoiding all the costs associated with printing and distributing a paper book.
Moreover, today, it has become not uncommon for traditional publishing houses to ask authors for money to help publish their book — money they would presumably get back if the book was a success. This is the worst of all worlds — you have little control over your book, a contract in which you get only a percentage of your profits, and not only do they not give you an advance, but they also ask you to help fund the project.
Merriam-Webster defines publishing as, “to disseminate to the public” and “to issue the work of (an author).” So, you can see it is not necessary to involve a publishing house in this process. In fact, anyone can set up a WordPress site and start publishing their thoughts online at any time. That’s how blogs and vlogs were invented.
Why Would Self-Publishing Not Count?
Many years ago, self-publishing houses were called “vanity presses,” and the term is still sometimes used today. Authors who used vanity presses were sometimes seen as those who would not compromise on their work, would not listen to reason, and were too vain to work with publishing houses.
Other times, self-publishing had the reputation for having poor quality. And rightly so — much of the works that were self-published were embarrassingly bad, and the same is true today of the self-publishing houses that function as vanity presses.
Izzard Ink: Quality in Self-Publishing
The difference with a self-publishing house like Izzard Ink is that we do not simply publish manuscripts in exchange for money without reading them. We select authors, and then we work with them to produce the best book possible.
When you work with Izzard Ink, you have control over your project, and you have the final say over all the big decisions. However, we keep editors, designers, illustrators, graphic artists, marketers and others on staff to assist you with your book. You can pick your own team to work with — the ones whose style you like the best.
That’s why today, when people ask if self-publishing counts as being published, we tell them the answer is yes. Because if you choose a quality self-publishing house like Izzard Ink, your professional team will help you make your book the best it can be. Some famous authors who started out self-publishing their works include Ernest Hemingway, James Joyce and Edgar Allen Poe.