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From Issue #3 November 8, 2012

The Problem with Self-Publishing

The importance of the publishing industry’s established feedback loops.

By Harry Marks Twitter icon 

It used to be difficult getting a novel published. Aspiring writers would slave over their legal pads and later computers for months, even years, writing and revising and rewriting until they had something they could call “passable.” These hopeful scribes would then draft query letters, synopses, resumés, and other proposal items and submit them to agents, filing away rejection letter after rejection letter until the fateful day one brave literary agent would take a chance on them.

It hasn’t stopped. This still goes on for writers who want their Scrivener files turned into volumes, covers displayed proudly face forward on store shelves. They know the agent is the person who takes a decent manuscript (once it’s been edited, and...

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