Proud of being a POD Person - print-on-demand, that is

How much stigma is attached to publishing with a print-on-demand press? I've realized the stigma may be greater than confessing to a psychiatric diagnosis (in my case, bipolar disorder). But I believe that's changing rapidly, and that traditional publishers are stuck in the last Millennium. What do you think?

Personally, I'm delighted to have published two mysteries POD. I'd say more, but I've already been online far too long today, and I encourage you to read my thoughts elsewhere. My garden is calling and in need of a drink.

Julie Lomoe's Musings Mysterioso

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Hi, Julie,
Another loaded question on the forum -- good one! With the many twists and twisted turns taken by the publishing industry lately, it really does seem to come down to a choice between "POD or PERISH". I'm sure you'll get an earful of how bad the stigma is, but not from me. When you're driven to write and facing the current reality, you do what you gotta do. No apologies, no prisoners...
Thanks for your reply, Donna. I think the stigma's lessening every day.
I think the answer two years ago would've been a "Scarlet P" but with everything so seemingly in flux today who really knows.

There are people today self-publishing (POD, vanity press, Kindle, what have you) and selling enough to get a publishing deal with the major houses. So if that's your goal, it's not entirely crazy to try it this way, just another long shot as with the traditional route via agents, and if your goal is to just get your work out there, then why not?
You said it beautifully, Eric. A major publishing deal is exactly what I'm going for, and it's a lot more fun than taking the traditional route.
POD is just a technology. It doesn't necessarily mean self-published, or vanity published, or anything other than the way your book is printed. People should know that by now.
You're right, Toni, and this applies to Eric's comment below as well. POD does technically refer to the technology, and many small presses are using it now - maybe large ones too, for all I know. It changes the whole industry by making publishing so much cheaper, faster and easier. But POD seems to be a widely accepted term for publishing with a company that doesn't have all the traditional layers of bureaucracy, editing, etc., so I'm using it in that sense. If you've got a better term for it, let me know! Whatever you call it, it's leveled the playing field, and it gives new authors a fighting chance.

Julie Lomoe's Musings Mysterioso
If you're self-published, then say so. If you're with a small press, then say that. I don't know what more terminology you need.
I think part of the confusion here is that POD means print-on-demand--a technology that can be used by either a traditional publisher or a self-published one.

My book was originally with a small press that used POD to print its books. Now I've reissued it through Lulu, which will publish whatever you give it. Technically, I'm not self-published (bear with me here) because Lulu obtained the ISBN and has non-exclusive rights to publish the work, with Lulu listed in the bibliographic info as publisher.

Self-publishing means handling every detail from obtaining the ISBN to arranging printings (usu. POD, because self-pubbed authors can't afford and don't need large print runs) to handling or arranging distribution.

I believe Lightning Source (a POD press) distributes through Ingram. So if you go with that POD press, your distribution is covered, I think.

Hope that clarifies things (probably not :)).
Excellent explanation, Debbi. Can I quote you on my blog? I'm getting about 50 hits a day, so it might be worth your while.
Absol-freakin'-lutely you may quote me! Can you include a link to my Web site http://www.debbimack.com and my author blog http://midlistlife.wordpress.com?

Thanks!
Thanks, Debbi! I began my Q&A post yesterday, but didn't have much space to quote people, so I'll do it Wednesday.

BTW, I'm glad you're using WordPress - so am I. Most people use BlogSpot, but we're part of the elite.
The elite Wordpress people--sounds good. :)

I do, however, have some blogs on Blogspot as well.

Writing for Hire: http://writing4hire.blogspot.com (about the business side of writing)
The Book Grrl: http://thebookgrrl.blogspot.com (book reviews and news)

So, I can't claim Wordpress exclusivity. :)

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