Saturday, August 14, 2010

The Great Internet Rush of 2010.

by Louis B. Shalako


All Rights Reserved

It’s been pretty compelling over the last couple of weeks to see the rush of people self-publishing their works.

In some ways it reminds us of the great Oklahoma land rush of a previous century; or even the California gold rush.

What spurred this sudden flurry of self-publishing was a number of credible reports, in which commentators speculated on the future of the mainstream publishing industry. In light of the burgeoning growth of e-books, and the number and variety of new platforms, at first glance, it looks like traditional publishing may be in trouble. E-book market share is growing by leaps and bounds. At some point the business model reaches a ‘tipping-point,’ where the capitalization of further production is simply gone.

The old-fashioned model had the author submitting a work, and then the editor would send it back. The author would re-write it, and send it in again. This process would go on and on for anything up to a year and a half, maybe even longer. Nowadays, people can write something and post it later that day, on Amazon, or anywhere for that matter. They get up to a 70 % commission or royalty on their work, which is impressive compared to a more usual 10-15 %. If you have your own site, after costs, you get to keep 100 % of the money. That's pretty hard to ignore.

It is not unusual for commentators to blame the industry for its own problems, some of which may have arisen from short-sightedness, or more likely recession-based cash flow problems.

But the sight of all those people staking out their ground and making their claims is nothing if not interesting.

In the gold rushes of history, people who came in a little too late often found the ground was all staked with claims, and so they would sell eggs for four dollars each—this was back in 1849—and some of them did a lot better than the people who just dropped everything and took off on the first available ship.

Preparation is the key to success. Also, a little editing can go a long way.

For that reason, we here at Shalako Publishing would like to reassure readers that our e-books will adhere to the highest literary standards, and will conform to the currently-accepted, standard e-book format.

We will sell no wine before its time. We are in the business of creating enduring works of art.

That sort of thing absolutely cannot be rushed.


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