People have asked me several times why I self-publish my books. Additionally, there are those people who look at me like I am not really a writer of books because I am self-published. So, I am going to put some thoughts here so that maybe more people can understand. The ultimate answer is that I am impatient. When you submit your work somewhere, especially if they have an exclusive submission clause, it takes FOREVER for them to get back with you. I realize that they have thousands of submissions and that they need to give every submission a share of that time. I don't envy their job, I really don't. But when I was submitting things - I hated the waiting. Especially since the waiting always resulted in a "We like your story, but we are not sure how to market it."
Perhaps it is amateurish of me to want to get my stuff out in rapid fashion. Sure, I cut some corners as a poor amateur author which resulted in a book that was not as well put together as the pros do it. I understand and accept that. Still, I wanted to put my words out there into the universe. I wanted to see the physical book in my hand, and be proud of the work I had done. When that day came - I felt accomplished. It made me want to do it again.
I have no illusions that I will sell thousands of books, or ever be able to make my living from sharing my stories with other people. I do it because it thrills me. It makes me happy bring my imagination to life. So why is that wrong?
Are authors like me really diluting the market for "real" publishers that much? Are we damaging the literary world? Personally, I don't see that. There have always been people who have self-published. Some of them even made it to become (in)famous authors. I just don't see what all the hubbub is about.
If you want to write, write. If you want to share your words - we live in an age where that is not only possible, but easy. Why should we shy away from it?
Writing not only gives me an avenue to create, it also makes me want to read more. Both of these things are good, in my opinion. So I say: Do what makes you happy. We have such short lives that looking down at someone because their words don't come from a big publishing house just seems silly. If you like the story, enjoy it. If not...there are millions of other books out there. Read something else.