Via Confessions of an Idosyncratic Mind , I have just read an essay by author Scarlett Thomas on becoming a published novelist, the compromises she had to make with the publishing company, and how she escaped.
"At the moment, I am actually being allowed to write the books I want to write, which is something many women never get to do. In an industry that can write off the whole literary output of entire nations in two seconds (Chinese books, for example, are ‘so last year’), this is pretty good going. I am not selling very many books but people do read them. And I have the kinds of fans I always wanted: men as well as women, lots of students, people who like ideas. I try to use the fact that I have ‘escaped’ to talk about what’s wrong with publishing.."
I think the essay is a very honest and clear account, though not comforting or comfortable.