Just read this article in Publisher's Weekly. If I was a tradtional publisher I think I'd start to get nervous. This has all the feeling of a small snowball rolling down a mountain side turning into a massive avalenche.
It's ultimately your call. Edward's probably right in that Amazon's ebook exclusive deal might actually make the series less attractive to a print publisher at this point, even if just the first of three were committed. I don't know anything about CreateSpace, though. How's it different from Kindle in terms of self-publishing?
I'm fairly sure the comments here about Kindle publication hurting one's chances with major publishers are wrong. Last summer Boyd Morrison signed a 3-book deal with Simon & Schuster largely on the back of his Kindle sales, and I believe the three books are for the three he'd offered on Kindle, and John Rector was recently on this site claiming that his Kindle sales led to his most recent deal. I'm sure there are other recent examples of this kind of thing I'm not aware of, or have momentarily forgotten.
Plus this whole "your book has to be virgin" argument makes no logical sense to me. If your book succeeds on a small stage, then that would seem to encourage those who can bring it to a large stage. That John Grisham's A Time to Kill was originally published by a small press, for example, did not prevent a major publisher from obtaining the rights and re-publishing it in a major way.
I agree, Eric. If we make the assumption that agents and publishers are out there to make a buck--then any author/writer who shows empirical proof that can move books in sales will be a prize to catch.
On the one hand, if you've got strong self-Kindle sales, it shows you can move ebooks. On the other hand, if you've already assigned exclusive ebook rights to Amazon, prospective publishers can only sell print versions of those books. On the other hand, ebooks are only a tiny fraction of the market right now. On the other hand...
Don't get me wrong: I would much prefer to go the route of legitimate print publishing. And yes, my going directly to Kindle isn't all that different from vanity press. But the point is that getting the books out at all will give me publicity and help promote the other books. And if that means that I close the door on getting the books traditionally published, then so be it. They aren't doing me any good at all sitting on my harddrive.
And lastly: it's a brave new world out there. Lots of well-known authors are going directly to Kindle (et al.) In a small way, this is a protest against the way too many authors have been treated by their publishers.
True dat, John. I'm lucky indeed--I thank God and my agent every day for finding what's probably the best possible situation for me, at the same time I pray that my editor doesn't pass me off to someone else.