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what does it mean to self publish as an ebook

A simple question. I have been trying, unsuccessfully, to interest a publisher and/or agent in my novel. If I publish it as an ebook, will I sacrifice the chance of traditional publication? I have two titles for my book, what if I publish under one title for ebook and offer it to a traditional publisher under a different title? Some feedback and opinions would be very welcome.


  • That depends on so many things.

    But NEVER offer a traditional publisher a manuscript under another title that you have already published as an e-book- whatever the title, without telling them. And researching the publisher's attitude to previously published works.
  • Self publishing an ebook wouldn't automatically mean you couldn't later sell to a traditional publisher, but as Carol says, you'd have to tell them about the epublishing.
  • If your ebook sells well you may be snapped up by a publisher. That's happening more and more and suggests agents and editors are more interested in SP books than people think. Certain genres and series are particularly favoured as they have a built in readership from one book to the next.

    BUT you have to sell VERY well, so make sure your book is as good as it can be before you put it out there.
  • I very much appreciate your comments. You, more or less, confirm what I thought would be the case. It looks as though I have nothing to lose as long as I am honest. If you ever come across Angels Don't Travel Distance, that'll be me.
  • Although agents may still consider your book, poor sales of the e-book could put them off, as they may consider it a reflection of the saleability of the book and/or the marketing effort you are prepared to put in.

    So if you are going to go this way, I think you really have to count on putting an awful lot of time and effort into making the book excellent and in marketing it realy well.
  • It won't be an easy ride to self-publish: and you will be responsible for advertising and selling your work as widely as possible. But never try to dual-sell - it won't be viewed favourably!
  • From the work I've witnessed of those who have e-published I'd say it's darned hard work. Marketing 24 hours a day seems to be the norm - exploiting anything and everything.
  • It's true the self published authors need to do a lot of promotion - but then so do many of those with publishers.
  • I think, though, that if someone self-publishes they need to come up with the ideas too.
  • Finding ways to meet your target audience needs, while promoting your own offerings, is surely the key. It is almost a symbiotic relationship. What you give, can come back to you.. In financial and status rewards..
  • Agreed Lydia - target audience is the key - know your audience and sell to them. The trick is finding a way of doing that. Remember John Grisham couldn't get ANYONE interested in his early work and ended up selling his books from the boot of his car in shopping centres - or as it was the USA - from the trunk of his automobile in malls.
  • That's a great example of successfully pursuing one's dreams to fulfilment. Self belief is a primary requirement, methinks.

    When everything seems to be conspiring against one's plans, one must somehow pursue that dream and hope that some special luck, as well as dogged determination gets you across that winning line..
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