Speak out on reading

Today, I’m asking you to help me with a research project, and I have four bright, shiny polls for you. Yeah, I know you already voted this month, but we haven’t had a voting here in awhile, and I think it’s the best way to get the answers I seek. Plus, in my polls, your vote actually counts.

Absentee votes? May I ask those of you who prefer to read my posts secretly to please participate in these polls? You will remain anonymous.

I’ve used the generic terms e-reader and e-versions in these poll questions, and print version applies to any print-on-demand option. If you do not yet own an e-reader, but use a reader app, please respond in Poll #3. Examples of reader apps are Kindle for PC or Stanza for iPhone.

Please feel free to voice your opinions in the comments section.

 

Thank you for participating. If I could ask one more favor, would you please re-tweet this post? More votes equals a better research sample.

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Can we get together and discuss this?

I know very little about self-publishing or e-publishing—or even small press publishing. I wanted to get that out of the way, so you understand I’m asking for information and discussion today, not stating an opinion from a knowledgeable viewpoint.

I do know that vanity publishing (where the author pays money to the “publisher”) is NOT something I’m interested in. But the longer I travel this agent query road, the more I find myself wondering about other publishing options. I haven’t given up trying to find an agent to represent my novel to a big name publisher (I have queries and partials out) but when I allow myself to read agent statistics, I tend to question whether I ought to face those facts with my head rather than my heart.

Consider this: established agents receive a conservative average of 50 queries a day—that’s almost 20,000 queries a year—but during that time take on maybe 5 new clients! Sobering odds, huh?

If you’ve ever looked up the agent who represented your favorite author, chances are you found that said agent “does not accept unsolicited queries.” The fact is the best way to get an agent to consider your query is by client referral. How many of you know an author offering to put in a good word for you with their agent? Show of hands.

For the most part, I search for new agents trying to build their client lists. They are just as hopeful they’ll discover the next best-selling author as we’re hopeful we are that author.

I know I’m not the only one who’s curious about the other publishing options. Natasha recently wrote a post about this. And super agent Nathan Bransford has written about e-publishing and self-publishing options.

So now, I’d like to know your thoughts. Have you considered (or chosen) one of these options? What do you know about the pros and cons? Do you think what you write should be a consideration? In the end, does it come down to a simple decision of why you write, whether you write just to share a story vs. writing to make money?

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