From Women Writers, Women’s Books:
Independent publishing, as opposed to commercial pushing (think Random House), is a terrific option for authors whose books don’t fit a literary agent’s idea of “saleable.” Authors of short story or essay collections, flash fiction, poetry, hybrid work and off-the-beaten-path novels very often seek out independent presses for possible publication, and they are right to do so: the world of independent publishing is an exciting one, full of terrific presses and excellent books.
I have written three collections of stories, two published and one forthcoming, all with independent presses, and I cannot overstate how supported I have felt, and how preciously my books have been treated.
My first press was very small—a “micro” press—that publishes only two books a year, so you can imagine the attention that was paid to every aspect of my book. I was treated as an artist and my book a work of art, and it was marvelous. Though my editor there wasn’t interested in publishing my second collection, I am indebted to her, and we are still good friends.
At the other end of the spectrum, my second publisher was quite large; my book was one of many and so did not receive the same attention, yet that press works with a larger distributor than a smaller press can, which means my book could end up on bookshop shelves—a big plus, as brick-and-mortar stores rarely stock small press books.
My third publisher lands between the first two in terms of how many titles they publish in a year. So far, my editor there is attentive and sensitive, and I foresee a good experience.
How do you find the right publisher for your book?
. . . .
By now you’ve doubtless gathered that if you want your book displayed in the front windows of Barnes and Noble or to be an Oprah pick, independent publishing is not for you. There are downsides to publishing independently, and lack of exposure is one of them. Amazon will carry your book, of course, and bookstores will special order it on demand, but it will likely not be available to browsers and that will affect sales.
Link to the rest at Women Writers, Women’s Books
PG has an alternate answer to the question in the OP, “How do you find the right publisher for your book?”