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by Deborah Greenspan
Sometimes, when you’re living in the midst of a revolution, it’s hard to keep up. A revolution involving swords and guns (which many unfortunates still live with) might drive us into hiding or out into the streets, but today, we’re in the middle of a new kind of revolution, one in which we participate and by which we can profit. Through an almost infinite number of methods including self publishing, this revolution can work for us.
The Communication Revolution began with Gutenberg’s printing press 400 years ago when he printed the bible, making it accessible to anyone, not just priests and the very rich. It wasn’t exactly self publishing, but it was the first time ordinary people had a chance to read and to learn, and yes, to have an opinion. Today, we can print a book in minutes, send an ebook around the world in a heartbeat. And we’re not even talking about computers, the internet, phones, faxes, blogs, movies, cgi, television, video games, or any of the other digital changes made to our world. All these inventions would have been seen as magic at the start of this journey, but today, we take it all for granted.
Today, because of this communication revolution, everyone has a say. We can all express ourselves in a form that can be shared with others. Whether we write a blog or comment on the work of others, the digital age has made us all equal when it comes to communication. With self publishing, we can write our own books, tell our own stories, share our deepest feelings, let the rest of the world know what we’ve learned, leave a legacy for our children and grandchildren. We do not have to belong to a special class to do this. Self publishing is open to anyone.
All we need for self publishing today is the skill to express ourselves in ways that others find pleasing and the wherewithal to pay publishers, writers, and editors to polish our work and make it attractive. Self publishing is how ordinary men and women share their stories with the world.
It took a revolution to make this kind of self publishing possible, but at least no one was killed. At least, we hope not.