An Author Heading Out On His Own

A conversation with Barry Eisler

Although a number of writers have gained some measure of success going direct to their readers without a publisher through ebooks, only one so far has turned down a substantial advance to do so. He’s Barry Eisler and he’s joining us for a conversation about why he’s chosen the self-publishing route.

Eisler will walk us through his view of the economics of self-publishing which led to his determination that he’d earn more in the long run doing his own publishing. Eisler will also talk about how he plans to handle print demand, what his financial expectations are, and, of great interest to our international audience, how he plans to handle foreign translation rights. Will he hire editing and marketing help? Can he see any circumstances under which he’d work with a publisher again?

Eisler is still an outlier even in the well-developed ebook world that exists in English but many people expect other authors to follow him. They’re bound to do the same in other languages as well. This is Eisler’s first discussion of his highly controversial personal business decision in a public book industry forum.

Barry Eisler

Barry Eisler spent three years in a covert position with the CIA’s Directorate of Operations, then worked as a technology lawyer and startup executive in Silicon Valley and Japan, earning his black belt at the Kodokan International Judo Center along the way. Eisler’s bestselling thrillers have won the Barry Award and the Gumshoe Award for Best Thriller of the Year, have been included in numerous “Best Of” lists, and have been translated into nearly twenty languages. Eisler lives in the San Francisco Bay Area and, when he’s not writing novels, blogs about torture, civil liberties, and the rule of law.

Mike Shatzkin
Founder & CEO, The Idea Logical Company

Mike Shatzkin is the Founder & CEO of The Idea Logical Company and a widely-acknowledged thought leader about digital change in the book publishing industry. In his nearly 50 years in publishing, he has played almost all the roles: bookseller, author, agent, production director, sales and marketing director, and, for the past 30 years, consultant. His insights about how the industry functions and how it accommodates digital change form the basis of all of the company’s consulting efforts.