Onetime Reader staff writer Neal Pollack had an essay on the pluses and minuses of self-publishing published in the May 20 issue of the New York Times.

It likely got more readers in the Times than if Pollack had self-published the essay elsewhere, and it’s pretty good press for Pollack’s upcoming self-published novel, Jewball.

Self-publishing could work for an author like Pollack, who as he himself notes is “midcareer, midlist, middle-aged, more or less middlebrow, and somewhat Internet savvy.”

But he also writes: “I wouldn’t necessarily recommend this to a first-time author.”

I agree with that. Here in the office I have a shelf full of self-published books by first-time authors, and 90 percent of them could use the eye of a good editor, not to mention a proofreader. But I give ’em credit for making the effort.