Re: Self publishing

Subject: Re: Self publishing
From: Dick Margulis <margulisd -at- comcast -dot- net>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 13 Dec 2004 16:04:32 -0500

Downing, David wrote:

I think the disagreement over whether a POD outfit is actually a
"vanity" publisher has to do with a nasty connotation of the term
"vanity publishing." Your definition is correct, but for a lot of
people, the term implies that the reason the author must pay to have the
book published is because the book is awful -- awful enough that only a
very vain person would want to see it I print, and this fool themselves
into thinking it was worth publishing


You're not the first person in this thread to ascribe that connotation to "vanity publisher." And, in truth, that's undoubtedly the origin of the term. But it's also the common term applied to that type of business; it's just the value-neutral term that distinguishes it from a "trade publisher" (which a sensitive literary type might think connotes crass commercialism rather than dedication to art, I suppose).

If we want to come up with a different term than that used within the industry for the last century or more, then we're going to find ourselves in the same quandary as people trying to replace "male" and "female" {plugs | pipe fittings | whatever} or "master" and "slave" {drives | computers | whatever}. We'll come to some artificial consensus, but we won't be able to dictate it to other users of the language. We'll end up with ambiguity, miscommunication, and unnecessary divisiveness. Better to just accept the terms as they are and see them as value-neutral in their modern use.





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RE: Self publishing: From: Downing, David

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