Yesterday the romance publishing world (or at least my little tweet corner of it) went into a bit of a tailspin with the announcement of Harlequin going into the self-publishing business with the launch of Harlequin Horizons (see site here). There were arguments a plenty and plenty more over if this was a good decision for Harlequin and if self publishing is a respected option at all for writers (Check out Smart Bitches post and comments here). Interesting on both sides but the initial anger is upsetting to me.
Now I’m not going to give an opinion, ok I’ll give something (I can’t resist). I’d like to be traditionally published. It’s a dream of mine. I’d love to be published by a house like Harlequin or Avon or Berkley I could go on and on here and I’m not ready to give up on that dream (some dark days maybe) despite many years of work, numerous manuscripts and countless rejections.
But let’s play What If for a moment here. What if you’ve been this close for so long and the playing field keeps getting smaller and smaller? Or what if what you write doesn’t fit into any box that said dream publisher is looking for? Or what if they already have your box ticked off? Maybe the slot is already filled for that African America romance or interracial romance or they don’t publish any of what you write. Then what? Do you keep submitting? Change what you write or take a chance on self publishing to get your work out there? Notice I’m not saying have fame or fortune here.
Now I know the argument of the good stories will someday get published and it’s just a matter of time. Or the one about the reason that most manuscripts get rejected is because they are not up to snuff and I do think that’s true for the most part. But I also think there are those few gems that may never get a chance because they don’t fit into any open box on that special given day when the stars align for subjective publishing dreams to come true.
Honestly, I don’t know my final thoughts on this. It makes my dreamy writer head spin but all that said. Here is my question for you:
Do you have an opinion on self/vanity published fiction books? Have you read any lately?
Please all you non-writers speak up. I want to hear from you too.
P.S. Update please go to Smart Bitches blog to read comment from Harlequin’s Malle on the subject here. I do think there are many sides to a story and breathing through is key.