By Jean Henry Mead
I’ve waited up to 18 months for a book to be published, but that was before publish on demand technoogy greatly enhanced publication time. POD is considered second class by many in the publishing industry, and I don't understand why. It's much more efficient than traditional publishing and isn’t it great that the wait between submission and publication is only a few months? Your books aren’t languishing in some warehouse, perhaps never to be delivered to the bookstores. That's happened more often than publishers care to admit. It’s also the reason bestselling authors have delivered pizza and donuts to warehouse workers. It insures that their newly published books leave the loading dock.
Young writers have time to wait for a major publisher to produce their books. But as you grow older and wonder if you’re going to live long enough to see them in print, you think POD is the greatest invention since the computer.
I came to that conclusion when the first novel of my Logan & Cafferty mystery/suspense series was orphaned. Who would want to publish a series that had already been published? I wondered. I received an almost immediate response from Avalon to my query letter, but I waited and waited for a go-ahead to my submission. Seven months later and tired of waiting, I decided to go with a small POD publisher that is very accommodating.
My first two books were published within three months of submission and released not only in print but Kindle and Fictionwise multi-format. Not on the bestseller list, by any means, but they remained #1 in sales for a couple of months at Fictionwise-epress. That made it worthwhile. The ebook edition of my first novel, Escape, a Wyoming Historical Novel, is currently number one in sales as well as the most highly rated although it was published in July 2008. I'm simply amazed and wonder if that would have happened with a traditional publisher.
This week I submitted my Mysterious People manuscript, all 145,000 words and 75 mystery writer photos to Poisoned Pen Press for publication. Although they're not considered a POD publisher, they accepted the manuscript via email so I didn't have to search for a box the right size to snail mail the manuscript or wait in line at the post office to send it on it's way.
I agree with Chester. You can teach an old dog new tricks and I'm happy to embrace electronic technology. When are the large publishing houses going to catch up with the innovative smaller ones?