Some of you may know, some may not, but I just recently had to make a big decision with my novel. There's a lot of choices to consider, but I think the biggest, for me, is between traditional publishing and self-publishing.
I spent a lot of time looking back and forth between the two options, weighing the pros and cons. Self-publishing gives you a lot more freedom and a lot more control over the end product. It also costs a lot more. I have to pay for an editor, a cover artist, an ISBN... so many things. Then, I have to do all my own marketing, which, arguably, I may have to do on the traditional path, too. The bright side is, I get to keep all the profits, though. Plus, I'm told that if you can build a good audience with self-publishing, you have a better leg to stand on if you choose to switch to traditional publishing later.
With traditional, I actually get paid for my work! It's not much, though. All the money my book makes gets split up amongst me, the publisher, my agent, editors, formatters, artists, and everyone else involved in bringing my story to life. On the bright side, a lot of the hard work gets done for me by the publisher. I don't have to pony up cash upfront for a lot of the expenses in making it.
I've been waffling on this for a while, but if you read my front page, you'll know what I decided on. I'm taking a year to pursue an agent and see if I can secure a contract. I'll be focusing on cleaning up the manuscript and getting up sample chapters for online readers. And mostly, I'll be querying agents off and on to see if I can get a good contract. If that fails, I'll fall back to self-publishing.
So... that's the plan, folks! Wish me luck. This is a long, arduous road.
Keep your eyes open for my debut novel, The Paladin.