DIY publishing soon. I have a theory about the 'traditional' publishing route. Well its not particularly original but it is a source of some annoyance. One of the areas I've dipped into from the point of view of a reader is biography. It all began when someone recommended a sportsman's autobiography. It was Niall Quinn's a hero of mine for more than his football skills. If memory serves me the book is entitled 'Head First' and it is amusing and interesting however, it took me on to a succession of less than wonderful autobiographies. It was after reading one of these that I woke up to the fact that the publisher's have taken some of this rubbish on board because they have a ready made market. It has nothing to do with quality. Also if the publishers are spending time on such dross there will be fewer opportunities for genuine writers.
There is another aspect of the celebrity autobiography and that is of course the ghost writer. I know a ghost writer who is also a sports journalist and he is a quality writer but when the sportsman is a characterless dimwit what can a ghost writer do to produce a worthwhile finished article? Again the pressure is on from publishers to sell and they will do anything to ensure that happens. I cringe when some pop star in their early twenties produces an autobiography. They haven't lived at that age! I had bought a DJs autobiography and there are about three words to a page! Publisher's are slaves to profit and the production of quality books is almost secondary.
As a result of the above I have become less interested in being published in the traditional way and happily focussed on writing for the joy of writing.
I use the above internet publisher and have been quite happy with the process and more importantly the support received from this London based company. A little different from the nightmare in trying to publish on Smashwords. I am not a computer geek but it seems to me that if the standards on both sides of the 'pond' were the same then the process would be less fraught with umpteen re-submissions. I uploaded my first 3 Steele stories to Smashwords but then they changed the size of their book cover and it was so difficult to overcome with my 4th book I gave up. I mention this because I'd quite like to have the 4th and 5th stories on their website so that they are available in the US but the style guide is longer and more complex than my novels - no comments please!