I got a Kindle a few months ago. I knew I'd love it, but never expected to fall so hard for it. I love buying good books for cheap and then buying more. There's something inherently American about that, isn't there? Finding a good deal and a good author, all in one fell swoop.
This is what self-pubbing is all about.
Two of my current faves, Kendall Grey and J.L. Bryan, fit this category to a T. If you're anywhere near twitter and plug "indie author" into the search criteria, undoubtedly you've run across them. They're prolific tweeters. I love their brand of writing: incredibly copious attention paid to details and motivations, a mastery of the language, and a great sense of humor.
Alas, if we play the odds, these good writers probably wouldn't have been published by legacy publishers. Maybe they would've, who knows? But odds are, no. They write in genres that are packed with other writers (dystopian young adult/speculative/urban fiction), and they're relatively new authors. Without the kindle and self-publishing, I never would've found them. Or rather, they never would've found me.
Which leads me to my premise: there is absolutely, positively nothing wrong with self-pubbing.
I know, I know. Your mother hates the idea. Aunt Suzy says you didn't pay all that money for college just to publish drivel. Shakespeare is rolling over in his grave. Whatever. Listen, you've got to get yours. You've put a TON of effort into your writing. You've sacrificed sleep and time with your loved ones. You write on the bus and subway when every normal human being is trying to catch a few extra Z's. You've missed all of Season 15 of The Bachelor. And all just so you could put in the extra effort necessary to make your WIP perfect. Now, it's time to reap the rewards.
And I don't mean reap in the sense that you only make 17% on the sales of your book and don't get to choose your cover art.
What I mean is you need to self-pub. Just so you know where I'm coming from, I'm insane. It's taken me almost two years to get to the point where I'm almost done with my first draft! OK? So I'm assuming it'll take me at least another year of editing to get it to the point of where I won't be embarrassing my family's good name by releasing it in book form.
I want to be rewarded for this Hurculean effort. This is only logical.
Even if it only takes you 10 minutes to write a novel, I still say self-pub unless you get some massive advance from a publisher. Just do it. And then use social media wisely (don't tell me about every time you get a drink of water, in other words) and work hard to sell books. This is the advice I'm giving myself, too, by the way. Because we're all in this together.