I was horrified.
I think many people come to writing with very little knowledge of what publishing is about. In days of old, the rule of thumb was that a writer never pays to publish. A writer is paid to publish. That is not the case anymore, which makes the whole publishing situation more complex even for writers with a little experience. Writers without any are definitely at risk of being taken advantage of.
Thus I am sharing a chart called The Key Book Publishing Paths: 2021-2022 by Jane Friedman. If you're just getting started writing, you don't need to read this because you should be working on writing. Don't put the cart before the horse (or use cliches). But if you think you are getting close to the point of trying to publish, study this thing as if there's going to be a test.
Metaphorically speaking, there is.