If you’re like me, then you’ve been writing along, doing your own thing, with no idea that Authonomy existed. (If you’re not like me, you already know all about Authonomy and can skip to the end and gloat.) So, here’s what I found out about this Harper Collins site:
1. Authonomy is a site where you can upload your book (unpublished or self-published) and hope that at some point, the readers will like it so much, that you’ll get a look-see from the HC editors. (People read, they review, your book earns points.)
2. That could take a while. Unless you have a TON of friends, willing to read your book and sort of give you a push in the right direction. (Which sorta happened last spring. Harper Collins said it wasn’t cheating. But a whole lot of a other folks begged to differ.)
3. People have actually gotten contracts from Harper Collins (three). And according to HC, other folks have been contacted by agents and garnered attention (Quantity unknown).
4. They’ve recently added Christian to the genres (Authonomy.com/Christian). They take all genres, but no pictures, diagrams or such. However, you can upload a pretty picture as a cover for your “book.” From my quick look-see, it appeared as if fiction fared better in the rankings.
5. It’s free.
6. HC wants to “flush out the brightest, freshest writing talent around.” I suppose if you’ve got something you really believe in, and all that work has so far gone down the drain, you’ve got nothing to lose, trying Authonomy. Maybe your book will be the one that rises to the top.
Okay, I’m going to stop now. ‘Cause this metaphor is making me a little uncomfortable.
William P. Young technically self-published "The Shack" and has since sold over 7 million copies, mostly by good old fashioned word of mouth. The words being "I LOVED this book. You MUST read it." HC probably wouldn't have been able to pick that one out on their own. People should self-publish, because people are the mainstream and know what the people want. Publishers, on the other hand, do not necessarily know what the people want. Publishers simply choose what they figure they can market well and then market it with flourish.So, whether HC will choose or not choose a great book, it's anybody's guess. Hopefully, the people will get involved and demonstrate to the publishers what they really want to read.
I think that's certainly the theory behind HC's site, Tami. It really is a popularity contest. Out there in the real world, authors promote like mad, hoping their book will catch on-that we'll like them the best and make their book a bestseller! (Are the bestsellers always the best-written books? Hmmmm…I'll let y'all be the judge of that 🙂
The "flush out" process doesn't sound pleasant. Great informative post, as usual!