To Be Or Not To Be? That Is The Self-Publishers Worst Nightmare

Myths floating around on Twitter about traditional publishing vs. self-publishing

There are a lot of opinions regarding the pros and cons of traditional or self-publishing route when wanting to get your work out there. The worst part? Most people form these opinions with little to no–to inaccurate research–they find on Twitter. Hopefully this post will debunk some false information floating around there. Have you self-published? Did your book flop? Check out my post here about the ugly truth about KU and how to succeed in self-publishing.

You’ve decided to not traditionally publish (trade pub) your book, and I want you to ask yourself a serious question. And that’s: Why? Is it any of these reasons?

  • You think trade pub is “all luck”
  • You think your writing is okay, but not good enough to hook an agent/house
  • You think you’ll make more money with self-publishing
  • You think self-publishing is easier
  • You think your book isn’t what’s “hot” or trending in publishing right now

Or are any of these your concern:

  1. You don’t want to wait 1-3 years to hook an agent, editor, publisher & finally see your book published
  2. You think you’ll have more control in self-publishing
  3. You have the money to pay for various editing, cover designs, typesetters costs, & have a solid marketing plan/team
  4. You want to rapidly release books (either in a series, spin-offs, or multiple standalones)

Let’s shoot straight. If your concerns for wanting to self-publish fall into the bulleted point reasons, these are not good enough reasons. You need to r e s e a r c h. And I don’t mean read other people’s opinions about self-publishing or form your own opinions based off what you’ve heard, particularly in regards to rumors floating around on Twitter.

Twitter facts are not facts!

Trying to find legitimate information on Twitter without contacting actual publishing professionals (agents or editors/sales/marketing staff who work for actual publishing houses), authors who have trade published, authors who have trade published and self-published and making a comprehensive list of questions of comparing and contrasting information, you will not have an accurate view of trade vs. self-publishing.

So what makes me qualified to give you my opinion? Well, for one, I have Master’s degrees in both publishing and creative writing. I’ve worked as an editor for a literary magazine. I’ve worked in marketing & social media in an established, international publishing house, and I did an entire MA Publishing thesis dedicated to NA in specific regards to self-publishing vs. trade publishing. I have interviewed and collected data from all of these people–plus more!

Still, my research isn’t fact, and I’m not saying this is the end-all-be-all for everyone. But, it’s a hell of a lot more accurate and thought out than many people who post on Twitter about self-publishing being the only route for a myriad of reasons that center around myths in traditional publishing. The things is, most of these authors have only heard, from word of mouth, about these trade issues. What happens when you play the game Telephone? You start with a phrase, such as, “I really like to eat pie on Wednesday.” And by the time it reaches the last person in line, it’s somehow becomes, “I like Fritos in the eyes, but only at weddings.” The entire original point gets twisted and becomes something new. This too happens when we share what we “heard” without fact-checking it.

If any of your reasons for not wanting to self-publish fall into the bullet points, I reiterate, they are not good reasons, and I’d love to tell you why. Let’s start with:

You think trade pub is “all luck. This particular opinion I see floating around constantly on Twitter irritates me because it is so untrue. Is it perhaps easier if you know the right person? Yes. But guess what? That’s anything in life. This in no way is special or contained to just trade publishing. And just because you know the right people doesn’t mean you’re an automatic shoo-in. This reason is ridiculous, and I’m not afraid to have a very harsh and decided opinion on that.

You think your writing is okay, but not good enough to hook an agent/house. Okay, well, if you’ve seen the first, second, third drafts, etc. from professional, famous writers you’ll realize one truth. They’re not all clean, pristine drafts that go right to the press. Some of these professionals still get confused by tenses and switch from present to past constantly in their works! This is what an editor is for. They mark-up grammar; fix syntax, style, tone; help with pacing; do so much more. Going through rounds of edits with a professional editor when I did my MFA thesis (where I wrote a novel & went through 3 rounds of edits like I would with a publishing house) is where I developed the most in regards to a more mature writing style. They helped me with things like voice, pacing, character development, setting, etc. But where I learned to really craft creative, engaging, and fun sentences was studying what my editor had changed. I taught myself how to correct the repetitive grammar mistakes I was making and what my editor was doing to help make my sentences glide and intertwine into one another to read like a flowing river instead of a stagnant marsh. If you’re writing is “okay” then that’s fine! An editor helps even the most common of writers shine, if they’re good at their job.

You think you’ll make more money with self-publishing. This one… I do giggle a bit. And here’s why. Even if you self-publish (KU or otherwise), someone else is still always going to get the majority of your royalties. Do people typically tend to get a bigger percent of royalties on KU? They do. But do they end up making more money? Nope. Here’s why. A good self-published novel (not even great, phenomenal, or fantastic) will have had someone take on the cost of editing (developmental, line, and copy), a decent and enticing cover, typesetting costs, marketing costs (such as running ads). The reason it’s harder to trade publish? Trade houses spend about $3,000-5,000 per author, per book to cover all these costs. This is the real reason trade publishing is so “hard” to break into. The dirty little secret, is that most of these books (in trade) don’t make back the costs the publishers took on to make it. They make the bulk of their money from their “evergreen” books. Things like “Twilight” or the “Percy Jackson” series or college text books from one of their imprints that sell every year without fail. Houses are looking for books that will not only make that money back, but become their next evergreen.

You think self-publishing is easier. This has got to be one of the biggest lies I’ve ever witnessed on Twitter. Self-publishing a Goliath amount of work. To have a legitimate book when self-publishing, you need to take on not only the costs of the publisher would, but also the work of marketing and sales which each house would have a dedicated team to. When you self-publish, you become all of these roles. You need to outsource to a trusted editor. Acquire an alluring cover. Pay someone to typeset your book for consistency (both the eBook and paper/hardbacks!). Plan your own marketing strategy, social media promos, and run useful ads. And a multitude of other things. Self-publishing is more work.

I want to point out that even if you have graphic design experience and/or a degree in it and can do all of the stylistic tasks yourself, one should never edit themselves. I don’t care if you have a degree in it. I have one, and I know because of that the worst person to edit someone’s work is the person who wrote it. You will always miss mistakes and make your work look lower-quality. And you know what? To get really good the 1%—who are well-known and make millions in self-publishing, like famous trade authors—pay the these costs and take more time than you’d believe to build their brand, as touched on in the blog post mentioned up top about KU and self-publishing.

Check it as many times as you want. If you edit yourself, there will always be heaps of mistakes.

You think your book isn’t what’s “hot” or trending in publishing right now. This might seem like a good reason, but here’s why I’m going to tell you it’s not. What’s trending right now is not what’s going to be popular in a year or 2 or whenever when your book actually hits the market. Everyone who wrote vampire books after the Twilight craze are just dusting them off now and querying because they’ve made a comeback. When they wrote them while the creatures were all the craze, many were told that they wouldn’t be trending by the time the book went to market. I’m not saying don’t querying your fae books right now, but even as they’re losing steam, keep them on the back burner, because everything comes back. But that zombie book you’ve written that went out of style 8 yeas ago? Take the chance. Query it. What if the trend a year from now is zombies, and wow, you’ve got an agent and a finished zombie book perfect for the market! Just because you think people won’t want to read your “niche” book or popular tropes or what have you, doesn’t mean others think the same. Not to mention, if an agent reads your book and falls in love with your writing and style, just because the book you queried isn’t “right” at this point in no way means they’ll reject you. They can and have still signed people and then read other works by the authors and gone on to query those before whipping out that OG manuscript and finally letting it see the paper press.

If any of these are the reasons you’re self-publishing, I believe they aren’t the right ones. Especially if you’re not willing or in the position to take on every role of the publishers and hire out for jobs you can’t do yourself–which at the very least needs to be willing to take on the costs of an editor (who developmentally, line, and copyedits the entire novel)! Yes it’s expensive. But if you want a book to sell like a trade book, it needs to be the quality of a trade book.

Addressing the the reasons you want to self-publish that fall under the numbered list. These are legitimate reasons to self-publish! These are reasons that I would say, “Yes, you should consider self-publishing, and you have the potential to do it well!” I do feel like I need to point out that if you fall under this category in everything except “You have the money to pay for various editing, cover design, typesetters costs & have a solid marketing plan/team then you still should not be self-publishing your work.

You don’t want to wait 1-3 years to hook an agent, editor, publisher & finally see your book published. This is legit. Books come out about every year if you’re doing some type of duology, series, or saga, but getting initially published takes a bit longer. When you’re established, have a contract and can write your books it goes a bit faster, but it still usually takes a year in between book birthdays to drop the next in a series when you go trade. If you write fast, edit fast, are paying to have your work top quality, and can write and edit several books within a year and want to get them out as fas as possible, self-publishing will have a bigger appeal to you. This coincides with the point You want to rapidly release books (either in a series, spin-offs, or multiple standalones). This is a serious reason to consider self-publishing. Again, I feel the need to point out something fairly obvious, which is even if you’re writing and editing fast, if you aren’t retaining, listening to, or changing issues that betas and/or editors are constantly point out to you, this isn’t going to help your books sell. You can have a top-tier edited book and still have it be incredibly unappealing to readers, which is discussed in the (Un)popular Opinion of KU post.

You think you’ll have more control in self-publishing. This is absolutely true. You have final say over everything. Edits and advice you do and don’t take. Final say on what the cover looks like to the T. What the blurb says. What the synopsis says. What the final title will be. You get to choose all of this. I’m not going to lie and say you can never have control over any of these in trade publishing, but I will admit the smaller the house, the more “freedom” the author typically gets. Self-publishing is the smallest house of all, therefore you get the most creative freedom.

The last point about being able to cover the costs is self-explanatory and I feel like I’ve talked about it enough. You need to have this. If you’re going to successfully self-publish yourself, build an author brand people want to associate with, and put out quality work without going through a trade publisher, you need to spend the money.

My goal here is to help you realize that trade isn’t the intimidating, gated, exclusive community only the “chosen” ones are invited into. Is it harder? Yes! Of course, but there are reasons! It’s not because agents and publishers just don’t like you! They’re looking at every book with the potential to become evergreen, or at the very least breakeven on the amount they spent editing, setting, designing, and marketing authors’ books. You shouldn’t jump straight into self-publishing because it’s going to be “easier” or “faster.” It could be, if you take short cuts. But you aren’t going to see the revenue, engagements, and growth you want.

There are some absolute genuine and appropriate reasons to self-publish. But a lot of what I see doesn’t cut it. What I tend to see are people cutting corner to just get their books out there and then getting angry when they aren’t selling as well as other authors or as well as they thought they would, particularly when the eBook rights are all with KU.

Not sure why your self-published book isn’t selling well? Even if you’ve done all of the work and covered all of the costs aforementioned? Again, maybe this KU/self-publishing analysis post will clear up the reasons!

The (Un)popular Opinion Of KU

Why KU has such a bad reputation, barring Twitter, and if it’s warranted

I’ve said before that I’m not here to be excessively nice, but I’m not here to be mean. I adore talking all things writing and publishing, whether I’m learning or teaching. I’m immensely passionate about it. But that doesn’t mean that I sugarcoat things. I didn’t with my NA post about where its past, present, and future stands in publishing based on my thesis research, even though I wanted to be biased and overly-positive because it’s something I love. I’m here to help give new, amateur, and seasoned writing facts, tricks, and a fun way to learn about something we both love so we can all get better and excel.

I lead with all of this to say, this post may sound like it’s negatively or callously targeted towards self-publishers. And it’s not. There are some self-published authors doing everything right. But self-publishing has a bad reputation in the publishing, reading, and writing realm outside of Twitter, and there’s legitimate concerns and reason for that. This isn’t an opinion only shared by publishing professionals or those highly educated in the industry that I’ve seen referred to as “elitists” solely for their academia achievements. This isn’t the sole opinion of the Big 5 board members, sipping on their 120-year-old brandy in their diamonds on plush loungers about how this new age “self-publishing” is bad because they’re losing money. They’re not.

This isn’t an attack on anyone. This is a reality check for why your KU book may not be doing well. Or why others who seem to be doing the same things as you are generating more sales, engagement, and reviews. It’s analysis of why self-publishing has a bad rep everywhere except Twitter, the pitfalls young & naive new authors fall into when publishing for the first time, and the opinions of our society correlating to the Arts (writing in this case) which could be why your book has/is flopping.

My intention is not to be mean. But this is a brutally honest and blunt take on why the world outside of social media platforms looks down on self-publishing and KU books in general. These are serious issues that may offend, but they need to be said. I’m not afraid to say them and try to help those who’ve fallen into these self-publishing traps so that their next book(s) do better!

This blog post is truly the unpopular opinion in (self) publishing you NEED to hear if you plan to/have/or are in the process of self-publishing your work.

Jumping in! Here’s the real reason most self-published books flop. When you self-publish–this is important and nonnegotiable–you must take on the full costs a trade publisher would. If you decide to do it yourself, to have a product worth someone’s time, money, and 5-star review it needs to look and read professionally. The self-publishers who are doing incredibly well–the smaller percent of self-publishers–pay for all of these costs, and when they hit enough revenue, go a step further by hiring PR and marketing teams to further promote themselves. Most say it took about five (5) years to gain recognition without them doing their own marketing by word-of-mouth themselves which led to generating a livable wage that accounted for half their household’s income, two (2) more to gain enough to further their brand as an author to really market well, and then two (2) more to be really comfortable. That’s NINE (9) years in total, a bunch of time, determination, and money to get where they are today.

Here comes a hot take.

For some reason, writers think it’s enough to engage in #writerslifts and #f4f, get a huge amount of followers (and in turn be following massive amounts of randoms), post a snippet and/or low-quality graphic of their book with the link to Amazon every once in a while, and BAM. That should sell it.

Worse, writing Twitter (looking at the toxic #writingcommunity) engages in a multitude of negative behaviors, one by bullying those who don’t support other (all) self-published authors. Your writing Twitter is your “Author Brand.” What you endorse is there forever for everyone to see. If you don’t feel comfortable retweeting, commenting, or even liking a publishing/writing industry mutual’s tweet about their book or work because it’s poor quality, you should not be made to feel like the bad guy. What you publicly advocate and support is so important. Your name is associated with that person or product forever. You have no obligation to endorse anything you don’t want in the name of “loyalty.” Random. Mutual. Friend. No one is entitled to your time, energy, or support for any reason ☺️.

So when self-publishers engage in these soulless automaton lifts and don’t get any engagement or perhaps get tweet engagement but lack sales, we can conclude something doesn’t add up about their product. If your book is professionally edited, did the editor charge less and cut corners? Are people saying certain things about your book over and over that you aren’t listening to? Are there unaddressed plot holes? Too toxic a character(s)/plot that never grows or resolves? Unlikeable characters–in a way that makes the book impossible for others to connect with and in turn read? This is why beta and editor feedback is so important to listen to in self-publishing.

A book’s success is dependent, first and foremost in self-publishing, on its quality. Sure there are readers who don’t care about or realize there are a multitude grammatical errors. But publishing professionals, other authors, and many readers will realize the quality of the work isn’t worth the money or time they’d waste on it. The first thing people who denounce self-publishing will look for are poorly edited works! This does not just mean grammatical mistakes have been corrected. This accounts for all the mentioned elements in the meme above (plot holes, toxic and unlikeable characters and plots, poorly edited grammar), as well as: writing style, consistence, and coherency. The plot, pacing, character development. And all CMS grammar rules. (This is particularly important, because professional editors and the entire publishing industry use the grammar rules of CMS.) It encompasses all 3 sides to editing (line, copy, and developmental), which is why it’s so important to listen to beta feedback and not scrimp on an editor or editing services for you self-published books.

A disturbing number of writers on Twitter think it’s enough to follow everyone on follow-trains 🚂 and at the end of the day their 5,000+ followers will all buy their book, giving them a livable income and cultivating an authentic audience. This is false.

So if your book isn’t edited (or not edited well), has plot holes, toxicity that never resolves, or unlikeable characters that make the book utterly unreadable, these are some technical (grammar) and craft reasons of why it’s not selling. But let’s say your book is edited well, there are no obvious plot holes, and your characters and plot are widely received. But your book still is not selling! You’re no self-publisher who’s cut corners! And your editor didn’t either!

Have you considered your marketing strategy isn’t working? How are you marketing? If you’re only using your Twitter platform, are you hitting keywords? Hashtags aren’t so important. If I look up something on Twitter like, “shapeshifter” results with #shapeshifter will come up–along with tweets that just have the word “shapeshifter” in it as well. Don’t waste your character count on hashtagging certain themes/tropes/elements of the book that will come up regardless of a hashtag.

Another thing I’d recommend not doing? Wasting character counts on hashtagging things like #writingcommunity #amwriting #authorslife #debutauthor etc. Why? Most of the time, when someone attaches these hashtags to their tweets, more people see them, yes. But on average they get maybe 1-3 (depending on how big the account is, if it’s retweeted, liked, commented on, and how big the audience is of those actually trolling the hashtag) more than they would before. Why waste 17 characters on the writing community hashtag when you could instead talk about that slow burn aspect, or the unique sci-fi/fantasy (SFF) blend your book has, or literally a novel’s worth of other things that would get more people’s attention than the 1 other person who’s going to be seeing your book tweet by stalking a hashtag?

Right, so you’re not using meaningless hashtags. What ARE you using? Besides certain keywords that get readers’ attention, a great way to uniquely pitch your book in a tweet is to use emojis! Everyone loves emojis. They’re cute and make your book stand out. Each takes up 2 character counts, rather than 1 which may surprise some, but it’s worth it. And sometimes you can get rid of complete words by using an emoji and up your character count! I’d recommend saying the word and using the emoji. Take a tweet I made for fun about one of my WIPs below as an example!

Obviously pitched as a book promo things would change. But the general idea is there!

Another thing that’s so important? The image associated with your tweet! The same boring photo of your book’s cover on a phone, a book, or on a tablet template you’ve copy and pasted over is not going to keep getting you new, bright, shiny-eyed readers who are enamored by your entire pitch, including the graphic you post with it. Mix things up! Make a snippet with a bunch of graphics related to the book. Collages and graphics are so easy to make these days (but make sure you’re using royalty free images)! If you absolutely can’t do it yourself, pay or befriend those who can. You can always try to swap services with someone who has a skill you need if you can’t afford certain things. Want a bunch of graphics but can’t afford so many new ones all the time because that royalty check hasn’t come in yet? Try your luck at swapping services with someone. What can you do that they might benefit from?

DO NOT talk yourself up for tasks you can’t do. If you’ve never gone to school to edit, gotten an MFA in creative writing, or studied lit theory or editing in detail, don’t go offering your services as an editor. You’ll get a bad reputation, and guess what–people talk. In real life. In the publishing industry. And all over Twitter. If you’re a published author with viable feedback and clients someone can ask about past projects and think you can offer legitimate developmental services, go ahead. But make sure you’re just as aware of your limitations as others are so you don’t oversell yourself and end up blacklisted from the industry.

What’s something everyone can do? A E S T H E T I C S. This is my favorite topic and my friends refer to me as the Aesthetic Queen 😇 ♛. There are so many apps for phones, tablets, and computers you can use to make your own aesthetics for your books. These images should have the vibe you’re going for that somehow expresses something big about your book through images. As creatives, we should be creative! Think of a cool and different way you could market your book through images! Here are some examples of aesthetics I’ve made for my current querying title. (Note that these are from Pinterest mostly and can’t be used as “promotional” images unless they’re from a royalty free website, made from a designer for you, or made by you.)

Any of these would catch someone’s eye–and have on my own Twitter! They can be as obscure, creative, weird, or as odd as you want! I have better examples for other books with unique layouts, but you can imagine for yourself how to make aesthetics that cater, fit, and make your own books pop!

Here are some websites where you can check out free royalty-free, stock images.

  1. Photobucket
  2. Picjumbo
  3. Pixabay
  4. Free images
  5. Little Visuals
  6. Unsplash
  7. Pexels
  8. Photopin
  9. Morguefile
  10. Gratisography
  11. The Stocks
  12. Visual Hunt

If you’re doing all of this and more when it comes to marketing yourself on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram–whatever else kind of social media– you’re using to promote yourself for free, now you need to think about spending marketing money. Every single successful self-published author I interviewed, listened to podcasts about, researched, etc., all ran ads on a numerous of platforms (such as Facebook, Amazon, or Google).

This blog post isn’t dedicated to me explaining how to succeed by professionally marketing yourself as a self-publisher. There are countless how-to articles, videos, books, and podcasts on the topic. I will tell you that depending on where you decide to run ads, you need to thoroughly research each platform, because different tactics and practices work on different online platforms. I studied this extensively at my publishing house in regards to Facebook and Amazon in particular. I personally don’t think that Twitter or Goodreads ads are worth the money. If you’re going to spend money on Twitter, I’d use it boosting book promo tweets rather than running ads. Facebook and Amazon (heavy emphasis on Amazon, especially for those who have their eBook rights exclusively with Amazon on KU) were most successful in my experience. As always, do you own research! I was running specific, niche-heavy, campaigns that worked best for the digital marketing audience of Amazon and Facebook’s platforms. Take into account your audience, their ages, the types of social media your top demographic is using most of, and go from there.

If you’ve paid someone to edit your book well; have received praise on character development and plot; have a professional and pleasing cover; are running promo tweets that mix it up, are fun, interactive, engaging and eye-catching; add aesthetics to mix up promo posts; are using emojis; have an authentic fan-base; are spending money running ads; and still aren’t seeing the revenue you wanted, remember my findings from the beginning of this post, which was successful self-publishers who were doing everything right took, on average, 5 years to grow a decent enough fan-base to support half of their household income. It’s going to take time. It’s not going to fall into your lap overnight. Life seldom hands us fame on a silver platter. Even the 1% of trade published authors had to fight to get where they are today. You might just need more time and products.

I want to end with something that will be highly contested by some. But it holds truth and needs to be said. Everyone thinks that they can write a book. Most professional writer’s have more than one horror story about being on a date, hangout, at a party, and mentioning that they write books for a living where someone pops up in the most annoying way about how they wrote their very own book. A memoir! And though they don’t read memoirs (or, you know, even read) you surely would love their writing. Why don’t you buy their book and give them yours for free and they’ll do you the curtesy of reviewing it. Everyone thinks they can write a book. That writing, is inherit. That someone can write and write and rewrite and because they’re writing so much they must be getting better. Without ever studying literature, literary theory, craft elements of writing, or in any way educating themselves with scholarly books and research on how to write and write better.

What am I trying to say? Writing is not something that just anyone can pick up and “do.” Does that sound mean? 🤷 It’s true. The society we live in tells people that the Arts are something anyone can do. Maybe you’re thinking you agree. Maybe you’re thinking you know someone who knew someone who never read and or tried to write and then wrote an amazing story and is now a famous or semi-famous author.

Think of it this way. Why can “anyone write a book” but not everyone can just, oh, casually build engineering equipment in their spare time? They, what? Need to study the material to be able to make something worthwhile? Society tells us that anyone can write as a “hobby.” Fine, write as a hobby. People also build robots and clocks in their spare time as hobbies without researching how to properly make one. Writing a book without the intent, discipline, drive, and ambition to learn the actual craft is equivalent to an amateur building a robotic blueprint, making a subpar, sputtering mess of bolts and gears that chokes up every 3 seconds while leaking oil, and then wondering why the hell NASA won’t buy their design.

Gaining skills by reading in general, your genre(s) or others, still isn’t enough for someone to claim they’re an expert or qualified to be an experienced writer. To put it another way, this would be like an avid Law and Order fan, deciding that since they’ve seen every episode ever, tomorrow they’re going to successfully try and win their very first criminal case with no law degree or legitimate training. Likewise, it’s comparable to a baker deciding to try and intubate someone because they’ve seen all 16 season of Grey’s Anatomy, though they’ve never taken a human physiology and anatomy class or gone to med/nursing school. I’m not saying you have to go to school and get an MFA in writing or English. But you do need to read literature and academia, take workshops, find a mentor, rely on CP’s (critique partner), beta, and editing advice to get better. By pursuing multiple avenues that teach you expert techniques to improve your talent.

This applies to those who have degrees or higher ed or have taken CE (continued education) classes in their profession. It’s not just writing. Many professions (law or medicine are the obvious ones) you have to keep up with the latest rules, techniques, trends, etc. It’s not just “I’ve written a book and now I am a professional.” It’s a lifelong continued experience of bettering and teaching yourself how to stay fluent and experienced in your profession. In any profession you must always keep educating yourself. Having an M.D. doesn’t make you a good doctor, just how having an MFA in writing doesn’t automatically make you great at writing. Continued practice and drive to be better is what makes the best in their field shine.

Another reason why KU is looked at as “amateur” is because most of the people who are publishing, are–in fact–amateurs who have no desire to put in the work to get better. This might sound mean, but literally no one says this about any other profession. So why do we take the Arts, and writing in particular, for granted as something “anyone” can do. Clearly that isn’t the case. And KU is proof of that. It’s clogged with poor-quality robots (books) and writers on Twitter complaining that NASA (the Big 5) won’t recognize or pay for their work.

This is a standard and wholly agreed upon viewpoint outside of writing Twitter. Here’s a Twitter thread that speaks more to it!

Of course in any field you have your prodigies. But as He’s Just Not That Into You taught us, they are the exception. And you, my friend, are the rule. We are all the rule! The vast difference in my writing from before I went to school to study it to now is incredible. I tell people as often as I can, if you want to make this a career and are in any way considering doing an MFA in creative writing, do your research, find the perfect school and APPLY. But even after being out of school for more than a year, reading, educating and continuing to write, my writing only gets better as time and energy go by.

This Hot Take™️ is the (un)popular opinion in self-publishing. Which basically translates to mean: this is how the entire publishing world views self-publishing and why. Except for the one sect of Writing Twitter. This isn’t to be mean. This is an honest and blunt account of why people have such a low opinion of self-publishing and ways for you to rise above, if this is the path you plan to take. There are a bunch of self-published authors doing. it right! Pippa Grant, C.N. Crawford, K.F. Breene, Emma L. Adams, Suzanne Wright, Shayne Silvers, etc. But they all put the time and money into it. And they all had a slow and painful climb to the top. That’s how it is in any profession. Why should writing be any different?