Why I choose to self-publish some of my work

This post is really to repeat (and expand a little) on a facebook status update of a few days ago.

When looking at my available books/ebooks you might notice that some are released by various different publishers while others are self-published (under the name of C&N Publications sometimes – C = Cathy, N = Neil). As a general rule my aim is to be published by other publishers – I find it more satisfying for me personally to know that someone else believes in my work enough to publish it. However there are circumstances and reasons under which self-publishing a particular work becomes my preferred option. What follows is my attempt to explain why my self-published works are self-published.

As you might expect this is a very personal view and does not attempt in any way to explain other writers’ reasons for taking whatever publishing route they choose.

Here we go!

Welcome Home – originally this was going to be a free ebook released through the Screaming Dreams website as a taster of my novel writing before the paperback release of Raised In Evil by the same publisher. When Raised In Evil was put back, due to unavoidable and understandable problems at Screaming Dreams, I decided instead to release it in ebook form for a small price. So much had already been online in various places pushing the free book that it didn’t feel right even trying another publisher.

Raised In Evil – as mentioned above, this is still on the future schedules for a paperback release from Screaming Dreams but at the time they were not producing ebooks (they do now) and the publication of the paperback had been delayed. I therefore decided to release an ebook version myself (after checking with Screaming Dreams that they were ok with this).

Interludes – the majority of these short stories had already appeared in various print and online magazines and putting the collection out myself allowed me to gather them together in one place. More than any of the others this one can be considered a ‘vanity’ piece.

The Szuiltan Alliance – this is the most difficult to explain clearly but I’ll try. The Szuiltan Trilogy is something I have worked on and off with for many years and this release of the first book is the final, approved version. Why self publish? To be honest, I completed this at a time when my depression had a pretty good hold on me and self esteem was extremely low. I looked at various publishers and decided no one would publish this style of science fiction these days – it’s a space adventure, light to non-existant on the science, heavy on the adventure, spaceships and characters etc. I saw no market for it (or interest from readers for that matter) and, in my low mood, decided I could not face the numerous rejection letters I foresaw. So I took the easy way out and self published – right or wrong. Interestingly it has so far sold more in the first couple of months of its release than my other ebooks have overall – but only in the US. No one in the UK has bought it. So, maybe I was wrong and there is a market out there for it, but only in the US it would seem.

Those are my reasons – whether they’re good ones or not is up to you to decide.

I fully expect to do more self publishing in the future when I think that’s the best way to go with a piece of work, but it’s not going to stop me pestering publishers with everything else! 🙂


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