Simon & Schuster launched a self-publishing division for writers on Tuesday, tapping into the growing market that has produced a handful of best-sellers outside of traditional publishing.
Simon & Schuster's new Archway Publishing division will let writers self-publish printed books and e-books for a fee. In return, the publisher will arrange for distribution and marketing and give the author a portion of sales.
"Self-publishing has become a viable and popular route to publication for many authors, and increasingly a source of content for traditional publishers," Carolyn Reidy, president and CEO of Simon & Schuster, said in a statement.
The number of titles self-published increased by 60 percent in 2011 to 211,269 books, according to publishing research and management company Bowker.
Electronic book readers like Amazon's Kindle and the online retailer's publishing service has spurred the self-publishing industry. John Locke, author of "Saving Rachel," was the first to sell more than one million self-published e-books through Amazon.
Simon & Schuster, a unit of CBS Corporation, is partnering with self-publisher Author Solutions Inc on the venture.
(Reporting By Eric Kelsey, editing by Jill Serjeant and Bernard Orr)