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Elitist attitudes toward self-publishing and POD or small press publishing is still rearing it's ugly head. Yes, there are a multitude of writers out there who should take up art or music instead, but they abound in traditional publishing, too. I'm sure many readers have opened a book published by one of the five major publishing houses and closed it after a few pages; badly written, boring, slow, poorly executed plot, editorial errors, ad infinitum, but nonetheless published. On the other hand, I have read books that are self-published or published with PODs and small presses that are superb.

My question: why do national and international writers groups discriminate against indie writers without ever reading anything they have written? Is that fair? Is it just? Or is it just snobbery. Do 100 rejection letters denote inability to write, or is it just indicative of the economic times? Does despair after years of rejection letters that leads to alternative publishing mean the writer can't write, or is it just the overwhelming flood of query letters and manuscripts that drain the limited resources of the editors and agents?

I dropped my membership in a national socity because of this discrimination and that was before I was even published. After finally throwing up my hands and publishing with a small POD publisher, I left one of their critique groups because all I ever heard from the unpublished writers in the group was that if you weren't published with a "traditional publisher" you had no credibility. Good luck, folks! At least my books are out there and being read. Where are yours, still sitting on a computer or disk or in a dark, rarely opened drawer?

So writer's organizations, look at the real world. There are a finite number of publishers and agents and far more writers who want to be published. If they have to go an alternative route to get their work out there, more power to them. You still have the luxury of choosing what you read, but reconsider the elitist attitude, please.

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Comment by Fran Orenstein on November 17, 2010 at 2:30pm
Thanks, Donna. It's good to know other people feel the same way.
Comment by Donna Marie Williams on November 17, 2010 at 12:31pm


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