There was once a time in my life during which my finger never left the pulse of the traditional publishing industry. But as the horizons of my personal publishing endeavors shifted, so did my focus, inevitably drifting away from traditional publishing and narrowing more exclusively on the nuances of self-publishing.
But as self-publishing continues to adapt and grow, now challenging traditional publishing in very real ways, I've come to notice an intriguing shift. While these industries are undoubtedly separate (in terms of royalties, advances, and overall profit), the shifts in commercial appeal and rapidly-evolving trends are applicable to each publishing avenue — and are worthy of our attention, regardless of which side of the war we're standing on.
What I mean by this is that while self-published authors have stepped up their game in terms of producing a quality product (I'm talkin' professional editing, cover designs, websites, swag and giveaways, social media platforms, etc.) and have successfully capitalized on what's likely the Achilles Heel of the traditional publishing route (the ability to rapid release), we still have not focused on the biggest advantage of all: publishing trends.
Now, don't get me wrong, one of the most appealing things about indie publishing is that it doesn't typically bother itself with trends. Authors write whatever their hearts desire, whether or not it aligns with what's commercially appealing at the moment — and when that appeal is ever-evolving, why keep up with it? I've got a two word response for that: rapid release.
If we've got the ability to publish much faster than our traditionally published counterparts, why wouldn't we keep up on what's trending in publishing and capitalize on that before they even have a chance to? I mean, we certainly don't have to — but we can.
The point I'm trying to make right now is this: What's applicable to traditional publishers is more applicable than ever to indie authors — not just what's trending commercially, but also the ever-evolving distribution tactics, promotional techniques, and marketing strategies that were once clandestine and exclusive to traditional publishers now apply to both.
Which is to say, I'm returning my finger to the pulse of traditional publishing — and I will be using this blog as a means of sharing my findings.
Upcoming posts will include:
— A Comprehensive List of Reputable Beta-Reader Companies
— Indie Author Marketing Strategies for 2021
— Expanding Your Platform: My experience with TikTok, Clubhouse, and returning to Tumblr. Oh, which reminds me! I've started a blog on Tumblr. Check it out here, if you'd like.
As all of you know, I've been hastily looking for a replacement for Instagram. While I'm not at all sure if Tumblr will offer the same sort of community (my research has revealed that it was once a very porn-centered platform, which is fucking disgusting — but that's only one side of what is an otherwise diverse microbiome of communities; the writing community there so far appears active, wholesome, and intact), I have really enjoyed blogging again. I figure that by sharing pretty pictures + blogging = equally if not more satisfying than sharing pictures and a hastily-written caption on Instagram. We shall see how this goes.
Overall, this post is just to say that I'm redirecting my focus. I've spent a lot of time just trying to get through my chaotic life, and I'm ready to get back to working on actually selling and making a living off my self-published works.
So, buckle up, friends. The goal is to post twice weekly now. The next entry will drop Monday of next week. I'll catch all of you then! :)