E-mail publishing

Warren Adler, who has published 27 novels including The War of the Roses, is e-mailing his latest novel, Death of a Washington Madame free, on demand. The novel will be published as a trade print on demand paperback and an e-book in September.

For someone like Adler, with an established track record and a fan base, e-publishing makes sense. Most new novelists still go down the traditional route, which Adler himself advocates in an interview in the New York Times. Publicity and promotion, as ever, is key, but Adler recommends getting help.

Your friends can hold book parties as easily as Tupperware parties,

he says.

I’m still wary about e-publishing, not just because for an unpublished novelist it carries the stigma of the vanity press, but because it’s not really about getting it printed – the key is getting the novel sold.

Simply adding a paypal link and an e-book jacket to your website won’t do that.



  1. This last point reminds me of being back in my music days speaking to our drummer about our lack of progress despite home produced albums, gigs and so on. He was a TV cameraman and came out with a rare gem: “Unless you’re being paid to do it, it’s just like owning an instamatic camera and telling everyone you’re in the movie business”.

    Of course, once we realised we had a philosophic *drummer* … he had to go (but he was still right!)

  2. There are examples of writers self-publishing and getting picked up by publishers, but it’s pretty rare, and it can be the kiss of death.

    I guess the rules are slightly different in the music business? You can establish a following at gigs, so you have a way to market your CDs.

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