Is Self-Published Self-Help at a Disadvantage?

In Discussion by Edward Nawotka

Are you more dubious of self-published self-help books than those coming from traditional publishers?

digital self publishing

By Edward Nawotka

Today’s feature story about the popularity of mind, body, spirit and self-help books in India notes that self-help has long been a staple of self-publishing.

As people get older, they are often eager to pass along their hard earned wisdom to future generations. Many individuals see getting their life story — and decades worth of advice — into print as form of self-fulfillment or actualization toward the end of a long life.

The demographics of the self-publishing e-book movement typically skew older and bear this out.

As a book buyer, are you wary of such work? The cliche goes: “The best advice is…Don’t take advice and don’t give advice.”¬†And certainly, when listening to advice it is always important to consider the source.

But what if you don’t know a thing about the source? With traditionally published books you have the reassurance that the work has been vetted to some extent by a team that likely includes an agent, an editor, and others. There is a modicum of reassurance. With self-published books, you have only the author’s word.

Does that put the self-published books at a disadvantage? Or does it no longer matter since the traditional publishing industry a squandered at least some of its own credibility by pumping out money making business tomes, diet books, and spirituality of equally dubious credibility.

Let us know what you think in the comments?

About the Author

Edward Nawotka

A widely published critic and essayist, Edward Nawotka serves as a speaker, educator and consultant for institutions and businesses involved in the global publishing and content industries. He was also editor-in-chief of Publishing Perspectives since the launch of the publication in 2009 until January 2016.