In some ways, this little book is a summary of all the complaints about the traditional writing path--the long, frustrating wrestling match with agents, editors, publishers. That's part of its strength. The other part is that it's a personal story that should speak to anyone who's still on the fence about whether to tread that traditional path or go it on their own.
The end of the essay does a very nice job of summing up the traditional path. "When we were telling an artist friend of ours that agents and then editors often ask writers to rewrite their work, he frowned and said, “Isn’t that kind of like someone looking at one of my paintings and telling me I need to take this chunk of paint off here and paint this part of the canvas with a different color over there? And if I do all that, they’ll pay me.”
“It is like that,” I said, “only it’s worse. Half the time they’ll ask you to make those changes but they don’t pay you for it. They end up saying, ‘geez, I guess I still don’t want it.’”
It isn't about traditional publishing being evil; it's about finding the way that works for you.
(review of free book)