This debate will run and run. One person who’s tried both and come back, scarred, to tell the story – Ros Barber – put forward her case in an excellent article in the Guardian.
If you self-publish your book, you are not going to be writing for a living. You are going to be marketing for a living. Self-published authors should expect to spend only 10% of their time writing and 90% of their time marketing.
This is small comfort when traditional publishing houses seem to be employing extra staff simply to keep up the flow of rejection slips in your direction. Surely it would be easier and better to cut out the middle man and publish your own book…. Ros bounces back with this wise advice:
Good writers become good because they undertake an apprenticeship. Serving your apprenticeship is important
My first novel was my fourth novel. It was accomplished on the back of three complete novels (plus two half novels) that didn’t quite make the grade (even though two of them were represented by well-respected agents). Yes, it can be frustrating, having your beloved book (months or years of hard work) rejected by traditional publishers. But if you are serious about writing, you will simply raise your game. You will put in another few thousand hours and complete your apprenticeship.
Full article here: