Thursday, October 4, 2012
Three days in, and we're already at 25%! I'm really, really pleased with how it's going. I'm even more pleased at how much conversation this campaign is generating. Thanks to a mention by the fabulous Emma Dryden of drydenbks, I've been corresponding with a lot of people interested in this idea. One of the questions I'm being asked most often is if I'm doing this because I think authors and traditional publishers have an adversarial relationship. The short answer is that no, I don't think authors and traditional publishers have an adversarial relationship. What I think is that the publishing world has changed so quickly--and continues to change so rapidly on a daily basis--that no one really knows what to do. And because authors are ultimately the ones most affected by whether or not their books sell, we're the ones who need to take control of our work and our careers. Nobody else is going to do it for us. I started in publishing in 1988 as an editorial assistant. When I left five years later to write full time, editors at my company still weren't using computers. "Electronic rights" were a vague concept that neither the contracts department nor agents really knew what to do about. We all pretty much had our heads in the sand and kept reassuring ourselves that huge changes might be coming, but if so they were waaaaaay down the line. Well, that lane was shorter than we thought. Those changes came, and they're still coming. And we still don't really know what to do about them. Ebooks have changed everything about how we read books, about how we sell books, and about how books themselves are perceived. Self-publishing has gone from being largely a vanity undertaking to a viable pathway for authors who want to have more control over their work. Publishing is a totally different world now than it was when I stepped into it 25 years ago. I decided to go this route with LILY because it's an odd little book that, frankly, probably would have gotten lost in the shuffle if I'd taken the traditional publishing route. This way, readers who want to read it can get it, and I get to do the book the way I want to. It's simply another way to get a book into the world. I'm still working on projects with traditional publishers, and while I think there's definitely room for improvement there, I'm also excited by the things publishers are trying to do. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU to Emma for mentioning my project, to everyone who has written, and to everyone who has donated to the campaign. There's still a long way to go, but every time I get an email from Indiegogo letting me know that someone else has contributed, it makes my day. Please keep spreading the word!
Posted by Michael Thomas Ford at 11:53 AM