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Print vs Internet for Writers

What are the differences between writing for traditional print publications and writing and self-publishing on the Internet?




Marketing: you propose articles to editors


No marketing: you write and publish whatever you like

Important deadlines


No real deadlines

Disadvantageous contracts


No contract

Your copyright diluted or signed away


You retain all rights

One-time payment in weeks or months (if ever)


Continuing payment for years

Payment predetermined


Payment open-ended

Article may be "killed"


Publication guaranteed

Editing: helpful or destructive


You control all editing

Errors permanent if not corrected before publication


Errors can be corrected any time from anywhere

Publication in months or years, if ever


Publication immediately

In-print a week or month to a year   In-print forever
Publisher pays (a lot) for publication   You pay (a little) for publication
Publisher performs most business functions: ad sales, accounting, marketing, distribution, legal   Because you are now a publisher, you perform all business functions, but they are less onerous

When you publish your own work online, you become a publisher. You take on all the duties, responsibilities and risks of being a publisher, but they are much less onerous, expensive and time-consuming than for print publication.

Your financial outlay and exposure (excluding legal exposure) for online publication is the merest fraction of that for print publication. Instead of tens of thousands of dollars per publication, you'll pay tens or a few hundred dollars per year.

The Problem with Print

Declining Print Revenues

The Problem with Newspapers & Magazines

The Problem with Travel Guidebooks

Change Your Thinking!

The Website Advantage

7 Reasons for a Writer's Website

Here's Where to Start

Book Self-Publishing

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Tom Brosnahan