A Major Defection

Eight Million Ways To Die
Burglars Can't Be Choosers
Hit Man

Famous mystery/crime writer Lawrence Block has decided to go the indie publishing route, a major defection from the traditional publishing world. His new indie-publishing endeavor is described in this article from Kirkus Reviews. He cites his reasons for indie publishing as control of the publishing process and timeliness of publication for his readers.

For those who aren’t familiar with his work, I can’t recommend him highly enough. I have, like, a bazillion* of his books.

      * I checked the database; I own 39 of Lawrence Block’s books.


My friend, author Cheryl Baker, asked me why this “defection” is so important, i.e. – why is it worth blogging about?

Here are my reasons:

  • Lawrence Block is a very good mystery/crime author. He’s the author of notable series like the Matthew Scudder detective series, the Bernie Rhodenbarr series about a professional thief, a series about a hit man named Keller, etc.

  • Not only is he a good writer, but he’s won tons of awards and had a bunch of best sellers.

  • Lawrence Block is now self-publishing because:
          – He has more control over the product.
          – He makes more money self-publishing.
          – He can get his books to readers faster than traditional publishers.

It’s a big deal when best-selling writers start defecting from publishers. It’s one thing when a brand new writer like me looks at traditional publishing with disgust and elects to go the indie route. It’s another matter entirely when an established, best-selling writer who could easily have his book published by a Big Five publisher says, “No thanks, I’d rather do it myself.” It’s an indication that self-publishing is becoming increasingly viable as a business model.

It’s also personally relevant because: 1) my friend, Pam Wilson, has self-published a motivational book, Say Yes to the Universe, 2) I’m planning on self-publishing my own fiction in 2014, and 3) Cheryl herself should be looking at self-publishing as one of her options. Since I’m planning on self-publishing, it’s really nice to see some third-party evidence that I’m not charging down a foolish path.

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