"Call me gullible or impressionable, but I'm actually feeling kind of hopeful this week. It's not just the new year or the inauguration (which I loved most for its goofs and gaffes) or even that—please, please—publishing business firings are coming to an end, at least for a while.
Then again, maybe I am buoyed by the start of the Obama presidency: While I know change is going to be slow in coming, it's energizing to look at what we've already started, at what we can do now.
For example, last week we launched a new feature on Publishersweekly.com. Developed from an idea a brilliant friend from San Francisco threw out at a dinner party in August, we came up with Review It Yourself, a place on our Web site for the reading public to review and rate self-published books and for traditional publishers to check out what's happening in the ever-growing self-publishing world. These are not the gold-standard PW reviews, but a chance for consumers and publishers alike to see if and how they can learn from self-published titles. (Note: Every once in a while a self-published title “crosses over.” See last year's The Lace Reader, a bestseller for Morrow, which started life self-published.)Unfortunately there is no informationr regaridng the selection process for which self-pub titles appear on the site."
Is the paradigm actually shifting? I never want to get my hopes up for nothing, but this is a good indication that self-publishing is gaining a bit of legitimacy, and I say, "It's about damn time." However, after wandering the site for a while, I could find no information regarding the selection process. I am certain there is certain criteria that must be met in order for a self-published book to make it to the list, but I was unable to find such clarification. Maybe PW can elaborate on this a bit more for us; though all in all, this is a step in the right direction. -- cannegardner