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Comment from the book world in November 2023

November 2023

'The freedom of self-publishing'

20 November 2023

‘My success, I believe, stems from a combination of factors. Firstly, the freedom of self-publishing allowed me to explore and cater to my niche without being constrained by traditional publishing expectations. This direct connexion to readers, without intermediaries, provided invaluable feedback, enabling me to refine and better my work. Secondly, being proactive in leveraging social media and other marketing tools has enabled me to build a strong reader community. Authenticity and a strong personal connection with my audience have been key.

Traditional publishers could learn the importance of agility and flexibility from my journey. In a rapidly changing market, quick decision-making, experimenting with new platforms and strategies, and listening directly to readers can provide a competitive edge. Moreover, the essence of personal branding and fostering a direct, genuine relationship with readers can often be more potent than large-scale marketing campaigns.'

L J Ross, author of 29 books, including 20 books in the J C Ryan series, 4 in the Dr Alex Gregory series and 4 in the Summer Suspense series, in the Bookseller.


'Everybody can write about everything'

6 November 2023

‘There's a kind of uncertainty among young writers about what they're allowed to write about. Not only for political reasons but also for social and cultural reasons.

And I worry about that because my view is that everybody can write about everything. If that's not true then the art of the novel ceases to exist. The question is whether they do it well or badly and to my mind that's the only question.

Otherwise, if we're in a world where only women can write about women and only people from India can write about people from India and only straight people can write about straight people... then that's the death of the art. The whole point about the novel is that you invent the world that is not and that includes inventing people who are not like yourself. If all you can do is invent people who are like yourself then that's nothing.'

Salman Rushdie, author of 20 books, including Midnight's children, The Satanic Verses, the Ground Beneath Her Feet and Quichotte, in The Times