I’m traditionally published in nonfiction and (ostensibly) working on a novel. That novel I would PROBABLY traditionally publish, because it’s standalone general fiction – bookclub fiction – which would benefit from the reach of a traditional publisher.
Behind that there are some urban fantasies and cozy mysteries I would love to write. Those I wouldn’t even consider traditionally publishing. Those genres do very well for self published writers, and there’s little to nothing a trad publisher could offer me that would make up for the money lost with their crappy contracts and rights grabbing.
My personal opinion is that most writers would benefit from traditionally publishing one book FIRST, and then self pubbing after that. Why? Because traditional publishing is a gatekeeper that can tell you plainly, “Your writing is ready for prime time.” Once you have that part of the equation nailed, then you can focus on the business side.
If you jump straight to self pub and sell well – fantastic!! But if you self pub and don’t sell well, is it the fault of your writing, your concept, or your marketing? You very likely don’t know and don’t have the skills to tell!
(A huge percentage of self published books were not written to a high enough standard. Seriously. There’s a REASON it takes years and many manuscripts to get an agent and sell a manuscript.)