Right before I was given a traditional contract, I'd decided to do cooperative publishing. I'd actually submitted to Living Waters because I'd heard they had a cooperative program. I was actually shocked to get a traditional contract and an advance.
During my latter research, I found a new trend that makes authors more money in the long run. Through various research outlets, I found that many authors are moving into cooperative and self-publishing for various reasons: less wait time for release; to keep editorial and creative control of their work; to make more money from their book sales.
To all aspiring authors, before you count out cooperative publishing as vanity and unwanted, you may want to visits these sites:
These are just a few sources of accurate information. Ultimately, it doesn't matter how you get published if you are fully invested in the marketing of your book. Help your publisher help you. Be prepared to work, and know that vanity does not mean untrustworthy. It means an alternative route to my dream. But ultimately, we know that traditional publishing is a great way to save money upfront and get into the stores. But, either way, stores will return your book if readers are not interested in them. Don't over-rate anything! Do your research!