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Alison Baverstock blog posts

How many self-publishing authors do you need to change a light-bulb?

Lots, but they need do nothing. They glow on their own.

It’s always an interesting exercise to look back on a big event and think about what was really going on. At the time you are often too embedded to spot the significance.

My main feeling on leaving Bloomsbury’s Self-publishing in the Digital Age Conference, organised at The Wellcome Institute last month, was of total exhaustion. Witnessing that much sheer energy was extremely tiring – and having given the initial presentation, and then chaired a panel in the afternoon, I confess I picked up a copy of Hello at Euston Station and tried to talk to no one else until I got home.

Now, one month on, what stands out? The main thing is how self-publishing has come of age. For so long derided as an undifferentiated mass of second-rate content, unable to achieve the quality barrier demanded by the traditional industry and therefore necessarily awful, a much more sophisticated picture of associated activities and …

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Launch day for 'The Naked Author'

Derek Parker, for many years the editor of The Author told me years ago that there was one subject on which he got more submissions than any other: how it feels to be accepted by a publisher and finally see your work in print. Given how profoundly most authors feel about the validation that comes from being published, it is likely that the inbox of the current editor receives just as much material on the same theme.

So please forgive me for adding to a much over-written about subject. My reasoning is this. Today is the publication date for The Naked Author, a guide to self-publishing (Bloomsbury) in the US.

OK the date is largely arbitrary. It was published in the UK last October, and I have meanwhile been communicating via Twitter (@alisonbav) with a growing number of writers, and writing support groups, in the US. The foreword to my book was written by Mark Coker – founder of smashwords.com – whom I visited in California last year, and who is increasingly …

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