This could possibly be the straw that breaks the camel's back in the publishing world. Great article about Hugh Howey and his success as both a writer and self-publisher in the WSJ.
I read the first book in the Wool series (free) and just bought the second ($.99). It is not hard to see how the structure of the writing and the publishing have adapted to the marketplace and I think it levels the playing field like never before.
Still, the writing has to be good. Readers are, after all, the customer too.
Howey delivers in this regard but he also seems to have broken the mold in self-publishing when the old one had barely dried.