James Frey (A Million Little Pieces) has self-published his most recent novel. Not really a POD/Kindle kind of venture – more like a boutique, art book, but a novel. Significant because self-publishing is no longer just a fall-back plan, or even a way to make more money, but it’s a way for writers to experiment. Writers should always be looking for ways to experiment, which was why the initial negative reaction to self-publishing was so puzzling, given that it gives writers so many options.
Via Indie Reader:
AHE: Tell us Mr. Frey, why did you decide to self-publish?
JF: I didn’t want a huge number of copies of this book produced. I also wanted to control all of the editorial, publication and marketing decisions. Self-publishing is the only way to do this. And I’m excited about all of the changes in printing and technology that have made self-publishing easier. I wanted to try it, and see how it felt and see how it worked.
AHE: Did your deciding to self-publish have anything to do with any dissatisfaction with traditional publishing?
JF: Not really. I just love the idea of being free from the system. There are great things about traditional publishing, but I wanted to try to do this book on my own, to try to work within the new digital world. I think it’s a really exciting development for writers. The changes are going to provide us with a ton of new opportunities.
AHE: What did you find to be the biggest difference between self and traditional publishing?
JF: That I get the final say on every aspect of the book, which is great. That I have to deal with all of the logistics of publishing a book myself, which is a little overwhelming. After having done it, I have a huge amount of respect for writers who self-publish. It’s a bit overwhelming.
AHE: Knowing that most traditional media outlets don’t review self-pubbed books (altho I’m quite sure they’ll make an exception in your case) what are your plans for marketing and PR?
JF: I’m doing very few interviews. I want to let the book come out and see what happens. Let it find its way. Or not. That’s part of the fun and part of the anxiety about releasing any book, whether it’s self-published or not.
AHE: Do you plan to continue to self-pub?
Yes, definitely. Probably not for everything I do, but for some of it. It’s been a fun, cool experience. Moving forward it will depend on the book.