A lot of people confuse 'vanity press' with self publishing. Vanity press is where you pay them to print up your book and they put it on amazon and send out some copies to reviewers. And that's okay, depending on the price.
I'm sure the expresson 'Vanity Press' was made up by publishers to belittle those that take their creative and business actions into their own hands and produce their own book without wasting years waiting on a publisher.
When Donald Trump started his own real estate developement company, did they call it 'vanity developement'? No. It was business. But if Trump produced his own book, publishers would called it 'vanity pulbishing'.
And now with Amazon Kindle's publisher, no one need wait on a publisher to get 10% of the cover price. Keep your price under $10 at Amazon and get 70%.
"Self Publishing" means exactly that. Remember publishing houses use separate printers just like you will be doing. And try to market it just like you will. They have the big connections and money to promote so if you get a book deal great. But 95% they won't read your manuscript, or make you re-write it and then still say no.
I could give you many examples of some semi-famous people, such as Paul Peterson ( the Donno Reed Show) who I talked with last week at a celebrity show, who's book is out of print from his publisher, yet can not get his book rights back from them. No books, can't make more. Publisher won't make more. Publisher won't return rights.
I have a acquaintance that only wants his book to be published by a 'real publisher'. So he paid thousands of dollars in reading fees over the years with no takers. He hates self publishers, but he will leave the planet without the fun of seeing his book come running out of the presses. And I recommend you are in the print room when it happens. What a sight.
I want everyone to have at least one tangible product that sums them up. To give out to new friends and loved ones. So the next time you're in a book and see those big texts between two beautiful hardbound covers with great graphics, you'll think, "Hey, I did one, too."
And start designing the cover while you're writing it. That keeps you excited. I love my 'Rock Star Rising' design that I did myself, with the help of a PC designer. I drew it out in stick figure, found the photos, and worked with him to get what I wanted in an hour. No wasting time with him making 10 test covers for $1,000 that you don't like.
Be very sure to read my article Searching for a Publisher? urlm.in/pbki
Also on this site: Francis Ford Coppola's Advice on Your Dream
How to Live the James Bond Lifestyle - KINDLE - Read 30 pages free. See the Table of Contents. Every subject you need to live the James Bond Lifestyle. http://amzn.to/wZ661f
Also on iTUNES: http://itun.es/isB5XC