Tips to Keep in Mind when Planning on Publishing
Writing is a solitary affair. At times we just want to get onto paper all the stuff that is going round and round in our heads; clogging brain cells; clouding thinking; preventing us moving on. Writing can be very effective for dealing with all this. In which case it is the end of the story; a done deal; filed away and forgotten. We get on with life.
However, for most of us, most of the time our efforts are not therapy but creative, stimulating, exciting and fulfilling. When we write this way, virtually all of us want those products of our creativity to be out in the wider world; read by others; appreciated and responded to. Don’t we all want our babies to be admired?
So it’s at this point that we enter the world of publishers and publication – a world that can be fraught with danger, difficulty and potential disaster.
A couple of weeks ago we told the sad story of friends of ours caught up by a vanity publisher. The joy of having been “accepted” by a “publisher” has turned to frustration and financial loss for them. Fortunately, for them, the disappointment and disillusionment has not killed the urge to write – but it could well have done so.
We have become aware that there seems to be a lot of confusion and misinformation among newbie writers; those of us with big dreams but little experience. This is a confusion we hope to be able to clarify for those of you who are finding the whole thing a bit of a puzzle and are not sure which way to go.
All this publication stuff is a big and complex issue. It will take some time and more than a few words to explain what is involved so we hope you’ll be able to stay the course and give us feedback if we do not make things clear and understandable.
Publication is linked to “publicity” – a word my big fat Macquarie dictionary tells me means (among other things!) “the measures, process or business of securing public notice” and also (but denser and less comprehensible) “the state of being brought to public notice by announcement; by mention in the mass media or by other means serving to effect the purpose”.
Point #3: Printers and publishers are different; connected but different; playing different roles; fulfilling different niches in the whole deal. They must never be spoken of as if they are interchangeable because they are NOT. Publishers use printers but printers are not publishers. They are merely one aspect of the publishing business; one cog in the system as it were, – a critically important cog to be sure but one that, as part of their own business has nothing to do with publicity; i.e. “securing public notice”.
In future blogs we will go into detail about various specific aspects of this whole deal.
© Mary McDee 2023
Feature Photo: Scene for inspiration, Glenelg South Beach © L.M. Kling 2023