Kirkus Reviews will lead a roundtable discussion on Thursday, July 17 at 1 p.m. at the Sagebrush Conference Center in Taos, NM. This event is free and open to the public.
We asked Karen a few questions about what the roundtable will cover:
For participants who aren't familiar with Kirkus, can you describe it? What all is encompassed under Kirkus Media?
Kirkus has been an authoritative voice in book discovery for more than 80 years. Kirkus Reviews gives booksellers, librarian, publishers, and editors a sneak peek at notable books being published weeks before they’re released. When the books become available for purchase, Kirkus serves the reviews to consumers in a weekly email newsletter and on kirkus.com, giving readers unbiased, critical recommendations.
Your roundtable is going to focus on self-publishing. Can you give us a little preview of Kirkus Indie and what your roundtable will be focusing on specifically with in the self-publishing world?
Kirkus also has a full suite of professional services, including Kirkus Indie, a review service for self-publishers; Kirkus Editorial, book editing services for publishers as well as unpublished and self-published authors; and Kirkus Marketing, services that help authors get discovered by consumers as well as industry influencers, such as publishers, agents and film executives.
The roundtable is less a how-to—platforms including BookBaby, IngramSpark and Smashwords already make that easy enough to do—than a “why-to.” Topics include how self-publishing can fast-track building a readership and foster participation in local book culture. On the other hand, if an author would rather aim for publishing traditionally, self-publishing can be a creative, effective way to catch an agent’s or editor’s attention.
Do you see the hour-long roundtable as more of a lecture or a conversation? Who should come to the roundtable?
The roundtable will start with an overview of the advantages of Indie publishing and include an open conversation and Q&A with attendees. Authors who are considering publishing their work themselves or authors looking for resourceful strategies to publish traditionally should consider attending.
Any other issues you may want to address? I know that there seems to be mixed feelings about self-publishing and you say in your description that you are going to talk about the "pluses" of self-publishing.
The boom in self-publishing (according to Bowker’s latest figures, 391,000 books were self-published in 2012, a 59 percent jump from 2011) has launched a revolution in writing. Self-pubbed authors have been signed by agents, publishers and film executives, and they’ve sold millions of books. This trend is only going to continue. Also, navigating the traditional world of publishing can be so daunting that it blocks progress; self-publishing allows writers to focus on writing and set their own pub date.