For several years, the industry has been watching the growth and acceptance of self-publishing as a viable model for authors. Once relegated to joke and pity status, the days of paying to publish and being shunned seem to be a thing of the past. This shift in acceptance is largely due to the success that many indie authors have enjoyed, mainly thanks to the readers who are willing to look past the stigma and enjoy a great book.
Now, a university in the UK has taken this level of acceptance even farther by offering a degree in self-publishing. The University of Central Lancashire now offers an MA in Self-Publishing, offering insight from industry professionals and successfully self-published authors.
According to the course website, the purpose of such as a degree is broader than just being an individual author who wants to publish his own books, but rather is looking to further the dynamic change already at work in the industry.
“We aim to develop publishing professionals who are independent thinkers and doers and give them the practical skills to be a self-published author.”
The university has already offered an MA in Publishing, with its graduates going on to careers in international publishing and with major publishing houses. At this time, UCLan is interested in reaching out to those professionals who may have been disheartened by the traditional publishing industry, or are interested in fostering even more change in the industry. Programs such as this one will also hopefully make a tremendous impact in the near future on bookselling and libraries, two distinct entities within publishing that are facing increasing challenges to operation.
Mercy Pilkington is a Senior Editor for Good e-Reader. She is also the CEO and founder of a hybrid publishing and consulting company.