Is 'Self-publish' No Longer a Dirty Word? Author Solutions Inc. CEO Kevin Weiss explains why some major publishers now are embracing this model.
Extra: How does this type of publishing impact the industry?
Weiss: … One thing that it means is that there's more choice for people. I think we're going through a transition. ... And that old standby model, which was, "I give you a big advance, you give me a manuscript, and we'll publish the book and print lots of copies, and cross our fingers and hope you're a success," just doesn't work anymore. It's a very risky model, and it's one that I don't believe can stand completely on its own. ... There will be a lot of opportunities in the future for people to experiment with different methods of publishing. … We want to help participate in those changes that are taking place. And, where appropriate, we'd like to be the catalyst for change. ...
Extra: What sort of reaction is ASI getting in the industry from the introduction of this model?
Weiss: ... It's far more favorable than unfavorable. But the unfavorables tend to dominate the landscape. When we announced the Harlequin partnership, the Romance Writers of America just threw up their arms and went into a fit about this. ... The Mystery Writers of America came out and said, "No way. Absolutely not. We're not going to support Harlequin." And the Science Fiction [and Fantasy] Writers [of America] came out [with] ... (basically, my words, not theirs): "No one in their right mind would ever read something that was not traditionally published." ... It's amazing to me that these writers guilds would … be so archaic. They're there to support writers. We have mutual interests. ... We're in an age where consumers choose, right? ... I think that, over time, they will come around and see that this is not something that's going to restrict writers' ability to get published; it will not restrict anybody's ability to be a traditional publisher versus an assisted self-publisher like we are, an indie publisher like we are. And everybody's going to come around. It'll be a while before they do.