I am an indie author who is questioning the intelligence of that decision in light of the fact that I am a terrible introvert. I know promoting yourself is a vital piece of the author puzzle on either route to publication. However, I can’t seem to generate enough buzz to sell much of anything.
It isn’t the work load. I have one published, another ready to roll with a cover and giveaways ready, another project entering deep edits, and another that is in the creation phase. I can work, and hard, on what I believe in. I can write the books and trudge through full rewrites if necessary. I can even handle the critiques that say, “you need to scrap this and start over.”
I love the freedom of self-publishing. Yet, I feel like I’m missing out on the opportunity to make a name for myself.
Is it wise to query agents seeking representation for print rights when I still plan on retaining digital rights? And, should I release the one that is ready to go, or try to go traditional with it?
Well, good luck with that plan.
What you're essentially saying here is you'll be glad to have a print publisher do all the heavy lifting and then you'll swoop in and publish an electronic edition of the SAME BOOK.
That's pretty much a non-starter for most authors these day. Hugh Howey has a print only deal at S&S but he sold the HELL out of those books; they were bestsellers when S&S took him on.
If you queried me for print only, I'd say no. I'm not much for taking on half a project and that's what this is.
I completely understand why you want to do this, but it doesn't mesh with what publishers want to do. They have a pool of projects to choose from, so coming in with "I'll do this but not that" means you're less attractive than almost everyone else in the pool.
If you're serious about staying published, hire a good publicist.