To sign or not to sign with a small publishing house

I share a situation that may be happening in the future with a small publishing house, and my thoughts on whether to sign or not should an offer be forthcoming.


Hi everyone,

As many of you may know, Brass Legionnaire recently won the EPIC eBook Award for Best Action Adventure Novel. And I get an awesome new little award thingie to put on my blog and my book website! Yay! 2013_EBook_WINNER-smWhat I didn’t add earlier is that while at the conference, I was approached by an editor at a small independent publisher. She was very interested in my book, and the award made the series more attractive. She asked me to email her when I got home, so I did. She recently got back to me, and was very interested to read more, so I sent her the entirely finished first and second books of the Steam Empire Chronicles, plus Roma Aeronautica, the short story that I’ve been working on.

I’ll admit, I’m feeling a tad bit nervous. One of the best things that self-published authors have is control. Control over editing, cover art, interior illustrations, when to publish, even deadlines. With a publisher, any publisher, you lose that. I was also worried because of my Kickstarter. Companies don’t like it when you give their stuff away for free (although in this case, the people have ‘technically’ paid for it, and saved the publishing house money as they won’t need to spend as much time editing or revising the novel – theoretically). I’ve also been looking at some of their writer’s work on the computer, and while it has some good reviews, they don’t seem to have a ton of downloads, which worries me to another degree.

The end result is what to do? I’m not sure. I’m going to hold off posting this until I hear some feedback from her. Here’s what I’d love to ‘get’ out of this situation.

  1. I want to keep my cover artist and interior artist because I believe consistency is CRITICAL with a series.
  2. I want flexible deadlines because I’m a teacher and can’t crank sh…er… stuff… out at a ridiculously fast pace.
  3. Money! (duh, but really, a healthy percentage cut or something…)
  4. Marketing assistance – I can do some, more in the summer, but not a lot due to my day job. I’d love some help.

What I don’t want

  1. Going back into edits on both novels
  2. Arguments over illustrations or cover (MY BOOK = MY COVER)
  3. For someone to get me to sign it over then sit on it.
  4. Changing the character/nature of the novel
  5. Being hung out to dry
  6. Watching my sales stagnate.

Let me add some caveats – I’m not a control freak, not am I a crazy person to work with. Just ask my editor, cover artist, formatter, etc. I’ve very low maintenance, but I do want to be listened to and included in the conversation. I don’t want to be talked down to, but I am willing to listen to constructive criticism. I know that Self-Published authors get a lot of flak for being difficult to work with or unprofessional, but I think that publishers often think that their work is superior in all ways, and that they don’t have to listen to people. I’ve found plenty of typos in major publishing house’s work before, so that’s not an issue with just one publisher. I also don’t think the stereotypes about either side are true, as I met absolutely wonderful people at EPICon who would fit either of those categories. I’ve also been looking up and doing my research, and I noticed that this particular publisher was relatively low on the Alexa score rankings, (type in Alexa Rankings and you can type in any website and see their traffic information). So I’m still torn.

Of course, nothing has been offered and therefore this could all be moot!

Lots to think about I suppose.

 

Brass Legionnaire out Today!

Brass Legionnaire is fully published. Check out amazon, barnes & noble, and smashwords for more details.
Only one day left on the free signed copy giveaway!


Happy Brass Legionnaire Day!

As of this moment, folks, the first novel of the Steam Empire Chronicles, Brass Legionnaire, is published in all formats and available for purchase!

I’ve made a new page at the top of the blog that features all of the easiest ways to purchase my novel. You can also use the links in this post to purchase them as well.

What about signed copies, you say? Well, I’ve got TWO give-aways running. Each one has three signed paperback copies of the novel available for you to win! You can even enter both. (If you win both, I reserve the right to only send you one signed copy!)

So either comment on this post of mine from earlier,

Or check out my Goodreads Giveaway and sign up there as well!

You have just ONE day left to enter and win for both contests!

Here are the links below to each book.

Nook

Brass Legionnaire (Print edition and Kindle Edition)

Smashwords (all other formats)

If you aren’t sure about purchasing yet, download the first chapter for free here, or you can sample the first 20% of the book (For more Roman-Steampunky goodness) for free also at the Smashwords link above!

Thanks again for all of my readers and fans out there. The journey started because of me, but it really finished because of your encouragement and positive attitudes. I love you all, and I’ll continue to blog about my adventures in life and self publishing. And yes, there will be more Brass Legionnaire novels to come. Copper Centurion (Due out sometime next Spring) will be even longer and more chock full of airship flying roman legionnaires.

Thanks again! Be sure to subscribe to the blog, Like me on Facebook or follow me on twitter! I keep it pretty interesting, and don’t spam you with a million for sale ads. Hurray!

– Daniel

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