By Elissa Gootman
"Over the past five years, print-on-demand technology and a growing number of self-publishing companies whose books can be sold online have inspired writers of all ages to bypass the traditional gatekeeping system for determining who could call himself a “published author.”
"They include hundreds of children and teenagers who are self-publishing books each year — a growing corner of the book world that raises as many questions about parenting as publishing.
"The mothers and fathers who foot the bill say they are simply trying to encourage their children, in the same way that other parents buy gear for a promising lacrosse player or ship a Broadway aspirant off to theater camp.
"But others see the blurring of the line between publishing and self-publishing as a lost opportunity to teach children about adversity and perseverance.
"The young authors themselves, raised in an era of blogging and equal-opportunity Twitter feeds, take the notion of self-publishing in stride."