Let me start out by stating that if I choose to go the route of a standard publisher, I will certainly do so only with agent representation. Even though I've only been following the blogs for a short period of time, I have learned that it's well worth it to have an agent do the hard work. Yes, writing and editing seem to be the easy parts. It's work, but it's on your time at your pace. Once you're ready to submit, it's a whole other ball game!
However, I still have not ruled out self-publishing. When I've finished my manuscript and received professional critiques that tell me I'm the next Dan Brown, I will seek an agent. What if I'm not? What if it's just a good book. I've done very little research into self-publishing. I checked some sites back when I first started my WIP. I had never read an agent's or editor's blog. I didn't even know about blogspot then; but now I do. I spend so much time reading and learning, writing notes, copying links, that I've not gone back to researching the self-pub route... until now.
Morgan Mandel at The Blood-Red Pencil just posted her seventh post of a seven-part series on self-publishing. If you have even the tiniest inkling that self-publishing might be for you, I encourage you to read the seven-part series. Morgan laid out clearly every step of her process, from the legal aspect to selling the books. She also included links to the sources she used in her journey. She shared details of how she used Word to format her ms for the print size, plus disclosed the other software she used.
You will note in her comments that she does respond to questions. I left a comment inquiring about her cost, which she promptly answered and openly revealed. I urge you to visit her sites; and hey! How about buying her book? I read the excerpt and I'm going to get my copy!