What Do Authors Want, Really?

As an aspiring or published author, what do you want from your writing career? Fame? Fortune? Freedom? All of the above?

It seems that today some authors get to have their cake and eat it too. Not only did their self-published books develop a huge fan base, and provide financial independence, but the authors got recognition from traditional publishers which led to lucrative book deals. Is this your dream as well? Is Amanda Hocking your role model?

What Do You Want Most As An Author?

Every writer is different so there is no one answer to this question. For many years I wanted the prestige of being published by a top New York publishing company. Other writers are happy if a small press decides to publish their book. There are writers who envision winning important literary awards, while others want to make as much money as possible.

However, now I see the many advantages of self-publishing. First of all, you don’t have to wait months or years for a literary agent or a traditional publisher to see the merit in your book. If you know you have a well-written manuscript, you can self-publish it in a variety of ways. It takes more work, but you maintain more control over your book.

In fact, you are responsible for every aspect of the book including launch date, production, marketing, and distribution. But the best part of this is that you get to keep most or all of the profits, depending on whether you choose Amazon, Lulu, E-Junkie or other platforms to sell your book.

For people who just want to write, and leave all the details to others, than traditional pulsing or vanity publishing are your options. Of course, with a vanity press you spend tens of thousands of dollars to print copies of your book. If you want to be discovered as a literary talent, the traditional route is best for you, but be prepared to submit your queries and manuscripts ad infinitum until you hopefully find the right publisher amidst all the competition.

Who Best Serves Modern Authors Today?

I think the self-publishing industry is most in tune to what today’s authors are looking for. More and more companies are springing up to cater to the self-publishing industry. These services include editing, cover design, marketing tools, and publicity strategies. What their self-publishing companies can do better is to provide authors with tools that are simple to use and inexpensive. Another thing authors like are a la carte services so they can pick and choose the type of help they need or want.

Technological innovations have made self-publishing an easier prowess. From ebooks to POD (print-on-demand), these options are making self-publishing more feasible for aspiring authors. What today’s authors will always look for are new ways to get their work into a reader’s hands. Whether through self-publishing platforms, printing methods, or marketing methods, authors want anything that helps to make their dreams of publication a reality.

Authors really haven’t changed in the last few decades. Some want the financial rewards, while others want to be hailed for literary prowess. What have changed are the new technologies available and the lessening stigma of sell-publishing.

Are you self-publishing your books or waiting for a traditional publisher to discover your writing gifts? I’d like to know.