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  1. #1
    Irving Karchmar

    101 Bestselling Self Published Authors

    Check out this list, it is not impossible to have a successful self-published book.

  2. #2
    Gary Kessler

    Re: 101 Bestselling Self Published Authors

    Apples and kumquats, Irving. I agree that it's possible to be successful with a self-published book, but that list is of an entirely different time and industry condition, when self-publishing was the norm. And, truth be known, most of those folks didn't sell many books or make much money off of them during the self-publishing lives of the books. The authors are well-known and the books have made money--and reached best-seller status--after they were picked up by traditional publishers and distributed widely.

    You're really not going to get objective material off a Web site set up to promote self-publishing.

    That said, I'll bet a list of some current well-selling self-published books/authors could be done. The trick would be to be able to identify them as best-sellers before they were picked up and reprinted/promoted/distributed by traditional publishers.

  3. #3
    Mya Bell

    Re: 101 Bestselling Self Published Authors

    Irving said:
    Check out this list, it is not impossible to have a successful self-published book.

    I know several successful authors who have self-published but many of the examples in that list are of authors whose fame and fortune was based upon their traditionally-published books, not their self-published books. The sales figures for most of the self-published books are low.

    Rather than being a list of 101 Bestselling Self-published Authors, it's more correctly a list of 101 Bestselling Authors who have at one or another time in their careers self-published.

    Tufte, Poynter, and McGuckin have done well in self-publishing by being constantly on the road promoting their books through workshops and seminars (and by constantly, I don't mean for a few weeks, I mean for a few decades).

    If you are an A-type entrepreneur who doesn't mind living out of a suitcase (some people are comfortable about that), your odds of success in self-publishing are much higher than those of a stay-at-home writer.

    I don't think anyone here disputes that there are self-publishing success stories. They are just few and far between and, for the most part, restricted to people with very strong entrepreneurial skills.

    --- Mya Bell

  4. #4
    Jerry Hatchett

    Re: 101 Bestselling Self Published Authors

    Isolated examples can be plucked out and held high, but it doesn't change the reality of the whole. For the average fiction writer to believe they're going to have significant success in self-publishing is only slightly more realistic than planning their retirement around their future lottery winnings.

    Even for a superb book that has the quality level worthy of traditional publishing, success will be EXTREMELY difficult to attain unless the writer, as Mya said, has a formidable set of entrepreneurial skills, and the money and fortitude to put them into play in a way that offers a chance at success.

    And to drill down one more level into the core of reality, the incredible majority of self-published novels are so poorly written that they have no chance of success no matter the approach. Plainly put, the vast majority of self-published books were rejected for a very good reason: they're junk.

    I've read (or at least attempted to read) many self-pub novels. Thus far, I've not found a single, solitary one that I would consider publishable by conventional standards. (I have high hopes for ERAGON; I own the SP version but haven't gotten around to reading it yet.) I've found one that came close, and I shared my thoughts on that one, in great detail, with the author. I encouraged him to slow down and hone his craft, because he has the talent. I offered many specific suggestions on where to start. He declined. Completely his call, no doubt, but it's a shame because he robbed himself and IMO deprived the reading public of the possibility of a string of excellent books.


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