2013: Another Year of Success for Self Published Authors

This is worth more than $95 million?

With the new year quickly approaching let us reflect on the growing success we have seen in the self publishing industry in 2013. 

E.L. James, the author of 50 Shades of Grey, has become the highest earning author in the world. This was an author who had began her career as a self published author of Twilight fan fiction for goodness sake. 

Since signing on with Random House and also earning a five million dollar movie deal,  she has earned over 95 million dollars from her famous erotica trilogy. 

One may write James off as a fluke, but while she is a rarity in the publishing world, there are certainly other authors who are finding great success in self publishing. 

Amazon.com self publishing division spokesperson Brittany Turner has stated that there are authors bringing in "hundreds of thousands of dollars a year" through Amazon.com alone. 

For example, Hugh Howey, the author of the scifi novel Wool, has sold over a million copies and has over 5,000 reviews on Amazon.com. Because of the novel's success, Simon & Schuster signed Howey and now publishes Wool

When an indie author takes the time to market their book and grow a following, traditional publishers are willing to take a chance on the author. 

Atria, a division of Simon & Schuster, has specifically assigned one of its editors to discover indie authors that have established a following on their own. In 2013, they have taken on eight indie authors. 

Atria publisher Judith Curr claims that indie authors that sign with her division are not "hampered" by "publishing and marketing [their]books" and can therefore focus on writing since it is a "full-time job."

However, there are more indie authors that decide to go it alone. Especially when they have found their own success. Even though it is more work, these authors keep more of the revenue from their books. 

The fact that one can earn more by self publishing has even attracted traditionally published authors to self publish some of their titles. 

Turner from Amazon.com stated that  “A lot of big authors are doing one book with one publisher and the next one they’ll self-publish. Once you have a lot of fans the royalty difference is huge.”

So clearly, by looking at the successful trends of indie publishing in 2013, you can prepare for 2014 knowing that it is all about growing your fan base.  This will give you more career options as an author. You can then decide to turn to traditional publishing, remain in self publishing or to be a "hybrid author."

Just remember to keep having fun while doing what you love. 


















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