Print on Demand services (such as Lulu) allow writers to bypass large publishing houses and get their books into print on their own, for very minimal costs. Unlike vanity publishing, where the author paid to have a number of books printed, with print on demand books are stored on a computer and printed only when ordered (typically through Amazon), eliminating the need for most upfront costs. The quality is close enough to that of traditional printing methods that only some seriously anal book nerds will notice a difference. Typical contracts with publishing houses pay the author 5-10% of revenues (and then your agent takes a cut). With print on demand, depending on the size of the book, binding, and how you price it, the author can take home 40-60% of revenues, and you probably won't have an agent. With blogs and social media so popular, authors can grow a fan base on their own, so when they publish, there's a pool of very likely customers to sell the book to. And, this coming behind the music industry, where if you have the equipment to record and edit, you can go straight to iTunes, without a record label or the expense of burning CDs. I'm close to finishing a short LSAT prep book (a deductive reasoning primer, meant as a supplement to other LSAT prep programs), and I like the idea of being able to put the book on Amazon a month from now, rather than spending months trying to find an agent, more months looking for a publisher, and then even more time waiting for it to be printed and hit the shelves. Focus: Have experience in the world of self-publishing, either books or music? Any tips or tricks when it comes to marketing? Alt-Focus: Are large publishing houses and record labels going to go the way of the dodo? Will a Do-it-Yourself youth culture decide to bypass established media gatekeepers and put them out of business? Or, will mindless consumers continue to require big names to tell them who to read and what to listen to?