I knocked down a newly-created wasp’s nest from my patio screen door this weekend but the wasp keeps returning to the same spot.  You can sense the wasp’s confusion as it searches the area, now devoid of the home of its future offspring. I have often felt like that tenacious wasp as I searched for a publishing home for my book. I tried and tried to find a traditional publisher but despite repeated rejections, I kept returning to the same spot – the traditional model of publishing – just like the hapless, confused wasp.  How long would it take for me to understand that, like the sliding screen door, traditional publishers weren’t right for me?

It took me about a year of this abject pursuit to realize that I was looking in the wrong place. Traditional publishing was not the right fit for my book.  This reality finally hit me when an interested publisher told me that my book may not be published for almost two years.  That was their current queue.  Two years!!  At that moment, I knew that I needed to stop seeking a home for my book in a place that was all wrong.

While I was looking at my publishing options, I had considered self-publishing but falsely believed that only a traditional publisher had the capability of successfully marketing the book.  This is no longer true. Publishers have small marketing budgets – unless you are a celebrity – and the author must do most of the book’s marketing.  So, with that in mind I said, “Why should I wait two years for a traditional publisher when my book has to be published now?”  I could self-publish, retain complete editorial control and, best of all, make the book available much quicker than two years.

I’m happy that my book has the right home and I’m sure that the wasp found a much more suitable place for its nest as well.  The first choice may not always be the best.

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