I love books, I am pretty sure that I learned to read before I learned to walk! For the past decade or so my interest in books has moved on from being the recreational reader of books on the best seller list.

Books are like drugs, addictive! The veritable New York Times publishes the top 10 selling books each week, but not all great books make it to the top 10. It is unfortunate, I have read many books that were deserving of notice.

The year 2000 is best known for the software bug that didn’t happen, less well known is that it ushered in the era of ‘Self Publishing’.  Vanity publishing has been around since Gutenberg invented the printing press, but the silicon chip suddenly put publishing in the grasp of every person.

The problem was that in those early days, there was little in the way of quality control. There were some truly awful books published. My mother had a saying ‘never judge a book by its cover’, she was talking about people and their appearance rather than literature. I must admit that for a while I judged a book not on its cover but on its publisher.

There was a stigma about being ‘self published’. Actually the industry came a long way in a short time. The quality of self published books is for the most part just as good as books from the traditional houses but the stain persists.

So, what is the way forward? Is there a way to take the pain out of self publishing? Publisher Don Bracken says yes. I have known Don since he created History Publishing Company. I like him, I like his authors, HPc rocks!

As his press release explains, he does see an alternative to self publishing. I also had the opportunity to talk to him on the radio. This is 20 minutes that no author should miss.

Simon Barrett


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