Forrester Research Vice President and Principal Analyst James McQuivey is paid a great deal of money for his expertise on publishers and publishing.
From Why We Need a Dad:
In my analyst work I am an explorer of digital disruptions . . . , many of them in the media businesses. In that work I have the privilege of working with some of the most talented and capable book publishers in the world. Of the many industries I have worked with, these are some of the brightest and most interesting people I have ever met.
And I have just stabbed them in the back.
Not literally, of course, and not even with a very big dagger, however symbolic. But I have just added mine to the large chorus of voices that have chosen to say what they want to say, in what feels like a book form, without going through a publisher.
I know the arguments for and against what I’ve done. The main argument against what I’ve done is that I probably won’t sell a lot of copies of my book — it doesn’t have any bondage in it (a recent hot trend in self-published books), nor does it contain a paranormal romance (see last year’s hot trend in self-published books). Instead, my book WHY WE NEED DAD is a simple exploration of a survey of 1,000 US adults that I paid for with my own money to find out how we feel about our dads. As a father of six, it is a topic that is important to me. As the son of a very good father, it is a tribute to him. It was worth doing and it is worth sharing.
But was it something I should have done with the help of a publisher? Certainly, if I had finished the book a year ago and was content to publish survey data that would be more than a year old by the time I shared it; certainly, if I felt like the book had enough gravitas and if I was willing to listen to a smart editor guide me to a book that would be more marketable; if all of those things had been true, I might have been tempted to work with a publisher. Assuming one would have me, which is a big assumption.
Instead, I had 4 weeks from when I finished the book to when Father’s Day would land.
. . . .
So I struck out on my own. And you know what I found? Self-publishing makes so much sense. Amazon has gotten good at it. They led me through a simple point-and-click adventure of manuscript preparation, proofing, and testing. They easily handed me off to their subsidiary, CreateSpace, so I could make a paperback version (complete with an ISBN assignment process that was completely devoid of mystery), and they gave me attractive control over pricing and promotion, not to mention nearly real-time reporting. And there’s the matter of the huge royalty they pay, assuming I sell some books.
Link to the rest at Why We Need Dad
And here’s a link to Why We Need Dad on Amazon.