Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright and author David Mamet is the latest in a string of established writers who are starting to self-publish, according to this story from The New York Times.
“Basically I am doing this because I am a curmudgeon,” Mamet is quoted as saying. “and because publishing is like Hollywood — nobody ever does the marketing they promise.”
Lack of marketing follow-through is often cited as the biggest reason established authors are switching from traditional publishing to a self-pub model.
The New York Times article says:
For one thing, as traditional publishers have cut back on marketing, this route allows well-known figures like Mr. Mamet to look after their own publicity.
Then there is the money. While self-published authors get no advance, they typically receive 70 percent of sales. A standard contract with a traditional house gives an author an advance, and only pays royalties — the standard is 25 percent of digital sales and 7 to 12 percent of the list price for bound books — after the advance is earned back in sales.