Monday, September 16, 2013
Prejudice Against Small Press
Book publishing as an industry is experiencing dramatic changes. Ebooks and Amazon have dramatically changed how we buy books and how we read them. I was first published in 2005 by a primarily ebook publisher. Needless to say, I didn't sell many books. Ebooks were not yet widely accepted and people didn't have the devices necessary for reading them. Brick and mortar bookstores often didn't carry books by small, independent publishers, often because it was difficult to return books to these smaller houses. It was very difficult to get a book published by an indie book publisher "out there."
Fast forward eight years. Many small electronic and POD publishing houses have opened and shut down. I have had several books and several short stories published by a number of publishing houses. My books are up on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Ereaders are widely accepted and utilized. But still, it is very difficult as an author published by a small house to get reviewed by the big review journals. Midwest Book Review is one notable exception; they encourage the submission of small press publications. Other review journals seems to make it as difficult as possible for small press publications to even be considered. There seems to exist a very real prejudice against small press works, which are often disparaged as poorly written and barely edited. In addition, there are some writer's organizations which refuse to allow those published by small press to participate. The message by the "establishment" of book publishing would seem to be that there is no place at the table for small press. Recently, I considered applying for membership in a writer's organization. However, the organization included the following information on their site: