Posted by Willy Franzen on August 17, 2011. Jobs updated daily.
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It amazes me how many people dream of writing a book. I never had that dream, yet when a publisher came to me and pitched a book idea on career development, I jumped at the opportunity. I had no idea how hard it would be, and I ended up backing out because it was sucking up time that I should have been spending on my business. Most people aren’t anywhere near as lucky as I was. Getting a publisher to work with you on a first project is nearly impossible–though I watched a good friend of mine totally hack the process and get a deal for his book. Luckily, you don’t need a book deal to publish a book these days. If you’re willing to take all of the risk, self-publishing can be a great alternative. Author Solutions is the parent to a number of companies that serve this market. They’re located in Bloomington, IN, and they own both the largest and second-largets print on demand companies in the U.S.
When I started doing research on Author Solutions, I came across a lot of negative blog posts and comments. It seems that the self-publishing industry can be extremely controversial, and Author Solutions is a big target because of their size. The term vanity press gets thrown around a lot, as it seems that some people don’t think it’s fair to charge an author to publish his or her book. Others are more direct with their criticism of Author Solutions’ services. It’s hard to say how much of this is accurate and how much is sour grapes from authors who paid a lot of money to publish a book that would never sell no matter who published it. I still think that Author Solutions has built a business that is worth at least taking a look at.
Author Solutions has published more than 140,000 titles, and I’m sure that number will continue to grow. They operate a bunch of businesses, and those include AuthorHouse, AuthorHouse UK, iUniverse, Trafford, Xlibris, AuthorHive, WordClay, lnkubook, Palibrio, and Author Learning Center. Through these different businesses Author Solutions is able to offer a wide range of author services including Editorial Services, Illustrations, Book & Cover Design, Publicity, Promotion, Distribution, Online Sales, and Bookstore Sales. If working in any of these areas sounds interesting to you, then you should take a look at Jobs at Author Solutions. Right now they have a ton of openings that might interest new or recent grads including:
Lots of options here, so give them all a good look.
Links to Help You Begin Your Research
Would you ever self-publish a book?
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My initial thought is, if a publisher doesn’t want to publish your book, chances are your book should not be published. Whether because your writing isn’t good enough to sell enough to make publishing worthwhile, or the topic/subject matter is problematic for any number of reasons, publishers have experience selecting the gems in the rubble, as well as identifying the rocks with potential. By the same token, there’s that whole bit about “it’s all about who you know.” There’s no doubt that there are plenty of people in the world who have exceptional ideas and talent, but may not have the connections or the savvy to get to the right person or the right place to get themselves published. A literary agent seems like it would be a good solution for these people, but as with anything, I can imagine a number of reasons why a person may not be comfortable with an agent. Are they putting me with the best publisher for me, or the one most inclined to get them their money the quickest? Relationships take trust, and a lot of people have a hard time entrusting a stranger with their work – their pride. When push comes to shove, if a person wants to publish their book and believe their book should be published, their going to find a way to do it. So, if there is a comprehensive service that can facilitate that goal, they will, without a doubt, attract business. If the published work has what it takes, it has the possibility to be a success with or without a commercial publishing house.
Although its an entirely different animal, look at the blogging phenomenon. People start blogs just to… start blogs. And not so long after, if the content is quality and original, and the person has the connections or savvy for solid outreach, the following can spiral upward of a million. We’ve entered an age where all is simultaneous, everything is possible, where is nowhere, and anything can happen anywhere. Pluralism + diversity + chaos = CHOICES.