Self-Publishing - Gaaaaahhhh!

In a post entitled "The Self-publishing paradox; or, why I love my editor", author Shannon Hale carefully lays out her reasons to celebrate books that are professionally published as opposed to self-published.  I am with her all the way. As a long-time reviewer; as someone who has served on both the Caldecott and Newbery committees; as someone who cherishes beautifully crafted writing, plot and illustrations for children, I am aware of how grating most self-published books are.

Agents, publishers and editors fulfill a key role in the evolving work of authors. I am sure I am not alone in listening to book creators talk about multiple rejections that spurred them on to re-craft and refine their writing and make their books even better. Editors work closely with writers and illustrators to bring out the best quality books.And the publishing houses provide massive support for the books they publish that a self-published author handles on their own. Editorial Anonymous also advised on this topic here.

I blogged about our current library policy in dealing with author's of self-published materials here. I fear we will continue to see more self-published works. While I appreciate the passion of those who write, I find myself, with ALA about to happen and all the amazing book creators celebrated there (Susan Cooper! Kadir Nelson! Jack Gantos! Chris Raschka! Duncan Tonatiuh!Melissa Sweet! Josh Schneider! Shane Evans!), wishing that those who can't stand the heat of the publishing crucible would re-consider their path. A look in the mirror; an honest look at their writing might yield a re-commitment to honing their craft.

I thank Shannon Hale for her words and hope we see many someones out there listening and reflecting on them.

Image: 'letter writing is a dying art' http://www.flickr.com/photos/62033724@N00/3539175858

1 comment:

  1. I feel the same way, Marge. It's extremely rare for me to accept a self-published book for possible review on my blog. There are just so many books out there that publishers have already vetted and worked on and improved. I don't have time to sort through the volume of self-published book to find the ones that might be ok... You know how it is.