Today I found a great resource for those of us trying to decide between traditional and self publishing. Agent Rachelle Gardner and author Michelle De Rusha lay out the ins and outs of both in How Do I Decide? Self-Publishing vs. Traditional Publishing (which was released in 2013, so it’s not exactly breaking news, but it was new to me).
I know a certain amount of skepticism comes with the fact that a literary agent–a mainstay of traditional publishing–co-authored the book. Some might be tempted to write the book off as biased toward traditional publishing. It’s virtually impossible to write in a way that’s free of all bias, but I do believe Gardner (and co-author DeRusha) have done a great job summing up the hallmarks of both self and traditional publishing. Unlike other guides I’ve seen, this book doesn’t just offer a generic list of pros and cons. Instead it asks you questions about yourself, your work habits, and your desires, which you use to determine whether traditional, self, or a hybrid publishing approach is best for you.
You may already have a good idea of which publishing path to pursue and are just looking for confirmation of what you feel in your gut. In this brave new world of publishing, I think most aspiring authors have considered the indie route, but it’s a daunting choice. This book helps you better understand the skills, resources, and commitments needed to self-publish well, what set of needs are better suited to traditional publishing, and what is necessary no matter which path you follow. If you feel like the deciding factors are too ambiguous, this book helps to make them concrete so you can proceed with confidence that you’ve made the right choice.
How Do I Decide: Self-Publishing vs. Traditional Publishing is $2.99 on Amazon, or free with a Kindle Unlimited subscription.
Great Book Covers: The Inheritance and A Beauty So Rare by Tamera Alexander
I’ve been keeping a Great Book Covers board on Pinterest for a while now, and that’s how I found The Inheritance. (Though for some reason I had to repin it yesterday because it wasn’t there. I may have accidentally pinned it to another board.)
It took me a while to figure out what makes this cover so stunning, but I finally realize it’s more than just that vibrant purple dress. It’s the yellow grasses and the purple dress together. A beautiful complimentary color scheme, but it looks so natural that I didn’t even pick it out until I’d looked at it a few times. It makes this cover stand out while at the same time being instantly recognizable as an inspirational historical romance.
Now, while I was first jotting these observations down, I got to thinking about the book itself. Cover art really does attract readers. I read this book because when I encountered it out in the real world, I recognized it instantly and snatched it up.
Anyway. The Inheritance was good, but as I wrote these cover notes, I got to thinking about how I liked another of Alexander’s books better. And I remembered that this book also has a beautiful cover.
Then I realized that the book–A Beauty So Rare–features complimentary colors, too! It’s even more subtle than in The Inheritance. It’s not straight-up red and green, and there’s not even a lot of green, but the green plants positioned just behind the cover model make the pink dress really pop. Just like the yellow background in the other book does for the purple dress.
Since I’m shooting for traditional publishing, I won’t have much say in my cover art–which is definitely one of the cons of this choice. (There’s pros and cons to everything, right?) But if I did, I’d be sure to discuss such a design choice with my cover artist. I love the idea of a complimentary color scheme!