But as an implicit indicator of quality, the idea inherent in the phrase “self-publishing” increasingly serves no purpose (other than a historical one).From my own reading of indie books, I think he's right. I've read several this year so far that were indistinguishable from traditionally published books. They were creative, interesting and well-edited. What more can you ask for?
I self-published two books, soon to be three, and started in mid-2010. Since then, I feel like acceptance of self-published books and as a route to getting your books in the hands of readers, has increased tremendously. I remember feeling a little defensive when I first self-published. I posted on my blog about it, but it was a very short post because I was embarrassed to admit to self-publishing my book. Even just a few short years ago, the stigma of self-publishing was very much present. It was assumed that only those who weren't good enough for traditional publishing would even consider self-publishing. I'm not saying that was an accurate assumption, just that it was the prevalent one. J.A. Konrath had begun making dents in the stigma, but there was always the fact that he had been published traditionally before, so people would point to that and say, 'But he was good enough to be published, so that's why he has done so well.' Then there was Amanda Hocking who had never been published before. I'm sure she was an inspiration to many. I had already self-pubbed before I heard of her, but her success has always made me smile. She proved that self-published books could become mainstream. That helped smudge the stigma. John Locke knocked the stigma for a loop with his million books sold.More and more books continued to chip away at the bad reputation of self-published, and I hope my own did a little something to help as well.
Authors self-publishing for the first time this year are more likely to see it as just another alternative instead of the only one. It was because of people like Konrath, Locke and Hocking as well as the countless not so famous but still successful indie authors, that those publishing today can do so without feeling too worried about the stigma of self-publishing.