Tuesday, 8 May 2012

To self-publish or not to self-publish?

Further to my recent email update, this is to let you know the options I’m considering for A Million Miles from Broadway.

Last month, shortly before I completed the manuscript, I sent out proposal packages to a number of trade publishers.  This package included an audio CD with musical excerpts from some of the shows covered by the book, as well as clips of my appearances on two radio programmes.  I have not received any responses.

A number of people have made various suggestions to me, including that I publish the book myself, either as an e-book or as print on demand.  I am holding both of those options as a fall-back in case I am unable to secure a trade publisher (or in any case one who will publish the book as I have intended it, with its international focus intact.)  I have received a lot of support, and it is clear that interest in this book is quite high within the musical theatre community.

There are a couple of ideas that may help see this project through – whichever option I end up taking.  One would be testimonials that I could quote in my approaches to publishers.  (I have already received ones from Tony Castro, John Sparks and David Overton).  The other thing is that it would be very valuable to me if some of the schools with musical theatre studies programmes could give me a written expression of their intent to use the book – either by purchasing it or placing it on reading lists.  If anybody is willing to consider this, I can send them a perusal copy of the manuscript.

I still have great reservations about self-publishing, as in the past I have always found the support that a recognised trade publisher provides – both in editorial and marketing – to be invaluable.  However, I must accept that this book may be a little too “specialised” or “niche market” for that – although I am still convinced that there is a large enough market for a publisher who knows how to reach it.

I appreciate all of the support that this project has enjoyed from many corners, and hope to be able to announce some progress soon.

Mel Atkey
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