Publishing, Indie Style

HilaryUncategorized1 Comment

So there I was, sitting at an open-call meeting of a local writing group. The man beside me had a strangely large, square volume with him that he claimed was for sale from the trunk of his car, on Amazon, and perhaps Barnes and Noble’s website. Although he hadn’t bothered to check yet. He’s already sold about two dozen copies. Not bad for a year or so – his words, not mine.
That, my friends. That. Is why I had always been so put off by the idea of self publishing. 
Now, I’ve always been a researcher, and a by-the-books kinda gal (everything is about books, really). So over the past year I’ve gone a few rounds with the agents. Racked up rejection letters, helpful comments, and thicker skin. Grew impatient, talked myself down, then got serious.
I regularly research authors I admire, to see how their careers built from nothing to something to spectacular. Over the summer I stumbled across (in the linky way of the interweb) Susan Kaye Quinn’s website, and my perspective suddenly shifted – just like finding that sweet spot on a pair of binoculars, everything was clear. 
I felt like a veil to the other side had been lifted, and they were having a party over there.
Susan (and many others I’ve found since) treats self publishing like a small business. These authors have business plans, short and long term goals, marketing budgets, and more.
They even have a new name: indie publishing. Now, this I can do. 
If “self-publishing” makes us cringe and think of a trunk full of books that you had to purchase by mortgaging your house, then perhaps “indie” can change writers’ prejudices and readers’ perceptions.
Doesn’t “indie publishing” sound exotic and buck-the-system and all other things I imagine myself to be when I’m not potty-training a two-year-old? Sure it does.
No more am I trapped in the idea that IF ONLY my book sells to a stranger in New York City. I’m a doer, and I always have been. I’ve been independent since I was conceived, according to my mom. (I come by it honestly: see previous post.)
Knowing the power is mine is, well, powerful.
If you write for publication, what fears or prejudices do you have about self publishing? 
If you don’t write for publication, do you know the difference, or care either way? (Most of my non-writer friends didn’t, on either question.)

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