I've worked in the publishing industry for 35 years as an acquisitions editor, publisher, and a traditionally published author by Workman, Simon and Schuster, and Beyond Words. I've also self-published three non-fiction books with Amazon's createspace. Self-publishing works well in certain situations: especially non-fiction where you have an established audience and can reach them easily.
A broad market that is thinly spread out across the country/world is a self-published author's nightmare. How to reach potential book buyers becomes your greatest challenge. True, there are many social media outlets where you can promote your book. Be aware, however, that 97% of self-published books sell less than 500 copies, unless you have a really, really LARGE family and/or enormous holiday gift list.
Based on my experience as a publisher, I believe writers are not capable of shifting from telling their story to selling their story. Creating and marketing books is simply not in their genes. Writers write. Period.
When clients tell me they want to self-publish their fiction book, first I check their foreheads for fever, then make the following suggestion: DON'T DO IT! Instead, I suggest they focus energy and efforts on the query quest, and locate a competent and compatible agent to guide them the rest of the way to that book-on-Barnes-and-Noble-shelf moment.
If you’d like to re-post any of my blogs, help yourself. Please reference the source as: Molli Nickell. THE Publishing Wizard at www.getpublishednow.biz