Self-publishing through Publish America

What do you think of Publish America as a means to get a book published? So far I've not heard any positives, except those I read about on the PA website, but I'm open to views from both sides.

Jenna Glatzer is an "author of 16 books and hundreds of magazine articles and greeting cards." She's written an analysis of some of the reasons she doesn't recommend Publish America in the forum section of Absolute Write.

Medievalist, another forum participant at Absolute Write, has posted an article On Publish America as well.

On the other hand, I read on the Publish America website that Pulitzer Prize winner William Coughlin is one of their authors. And I also read there how many of its authors are writing for well known national publications as well, such as O Magazine.

Could it be that the non-edited versions of PA titles folks are talking about are from PA's early days, when the company first got started? Have they changed their editorial practices since then? Are the titles coming out of PA's presses being edited as needed? Could it also be that there's a time and a place to go with a POD (print-on-demand) publisher such as PA? Maybe an already established author, with a built-in audience, could do better self-publishing and selling their books directly. But where does that leave the new author who so desperately wants to break into the industry and has yet to find a traditional publisher or agent who'll take them on?

I'm perhaps trying too hard to give PA the benefit of the doubt. The more I have googled PA in the past the worse news I found! A.C. Crispin, from the Writers Beware blogs, minces no words when talking about PA...and neither do those who posted in reply to the blog, "A.C. Crispin - 65 - The Cult of PArsonality..."

What are your thoughts on PA or self-publishing at large? Have you dealt with Publish America yourself? What was your experience? Or that of your writing buddies? If we end up talking about self-publishing as a venue for new writers to break in that would be good as well. In the meantime I've added a link to Absolute Write and the Writers Beware blogs from this page.

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