Yeah I agree 100%. I just SO wanted to stay away from the traditional route... cut out all the middle men/women and the BS that comes along with it.
I am still on the fence about shopping my second novel to the traditional route, but at this rate I might just have to.
There just has to be a better way to do this. I paid for a professional editor... and my professional, I mean a solo, career editor. I also hired a professional cover designer to create a cover that truly conveys the "meat" of my book. It was an investment on my part, but I wanted to put forth the best product possible to the readers. Will I make the money back? Likely not, and also not the reason I got into this.
I am in a debate right now with an awards-runner about this (through e-mail, since I questioned their no self-publishing policy). I FULLY understand not wanting to open up the floodgates of self-published works and them not wanting to overwhelm their judges.
The industry has changed, though. The advent of the e-book and self-publishing has forever altered the writing landscape. so in this discussion we are having, I am stating that there has to be a better way to distinguish between different types of self-published works.
My self-published work still involved the rest of the writing industry, just on a smaller scale. Does that make it better? No (that is up to the reader to decide). I still collaborated with others in the industry though, those who make a living from it (i.e. Editors and Cover Designers), so there in lies the difference.
Am I wrong on this? I would like some more opinions.