It’s happened again. Every time a book reaches the top of our best seller list–including “Bared to You” by Sylvia Day, “Wool” by Hugh Howey and “On the Island” by Tracey Garvis-Graves–it gets snatched up for tons ‘o cash by a traditional publisher or movie studio.
This week it’s Jamie McGuire’s “Beautiful Disaster”, the tale of a young woman trying to choose between two men. Picked up by Atria, the ebook will be re-pubbed in July 2012, followed by a paperback in August 2012 and a sequel, “Walking Disaster”, for publication in 2013.
When reached by IR earlier today, Jamie said that she is , “very excited to be working with Atria. They have been incredible and worked all hours to make this happen so quickly.”
So is the old “try-to-get-an-agent-who-will-try-to-get-you-a-book-deal” method of publishing gone the way of the Tom and Katie? Looks like it.
The new trajectory looks something like this.
1. Self-pub an ebook. If it’s a story that includes a handsome billionaire with a taste for S&M, so much the better.
2. Work like a dog to get your book to the top of various best seller lists. Jamie says that she simply, “…reached out to readers via Facebook, and that’s really it.” She never advertised “Beautiful Disaster” but the book does have a kick-ass cover and did get a 4.5 star review from IndieReader. Adds Jamie, “It’s just a book that readers feel compelled to talk about.”
3. Making a pile of money due to the fact that, as an indie, you get to keep more of it.
4. Field offers from traditional publishers, who might not be offering more cash but who will certainly lend more than a whiff of prestige, not to mention the ability to get your book onto bookstore shelves nationwide.
5. When your second (or third) title fails to sell and/or you are no longer the apple of your publisher’s eye, jump ship (a la Barry Eisner, Micheal Prescott, et al) and go back to being an indie.
Or, have the best of both worlds. As Jamie puts it, “I don’t feel like I’ve left indie behind. I still have three books, the “Providence” trilogy, that are self-published, and I plan to continue self-publishing certain titles throughout my career.”