In the world of publishing, there is the question, do I go the traditional route with a literary agent and publishing house, or do I self-publish? For years, I dreamed of writing my own book and seeing it in print, but I found the process daunting. Fortunately, with the evolution of the Internet and social media, my dream of seeing a book I wrote published was more than just a dream. I was able to make it a reality.
I chose self-publishing as my avenue to write and publish my work. Oh, it has many challenges, but for me, they are worth working through. I thought I’d share with you my reasons I choose to play the role of writer and publisher.
My 7 reasons why I self-publish.
- I want to interact with my readers. Not too many years ago, when you went to the internet, all you got was a static page of information. Today, that information can lead you to links to other information. If you don’t understand something, you can ask a question under the Contact Us section. If you wish to dialog on the topic written you can comment. I can write a book and people can go to my website and right after they read it they can tell me their thoughts on it and I can write them back right away.
- When I am done with the story, I can have it edited, published and collect payment on purchases within two months. Unlike traditional publishing, which could take as long as three years before it reaches a reader, self-publishing is a game changer for people like me who have dozens of stories just floating around in their head.
- When I get paid, I get 70 – 100 % of the price of the book depending on how I choose to sell the book. When you go to a publishing company if you are fortunate, you might see 45% of the price of your first book, provided it’s a best seller. If not, you have to wait until your name is recognized from the first book to see that kind of revenue from your second book. Don’t forget you will be waiting the 3 more years for it to get processed and to the bookstores.
- I like having total control over the end product. You see, with a publishing company, after you hand it over to them, they have you practically rewrite it so that it suits their idea of what they want the story to be. After all, you are writing it for them as your audience, not for the readers in the bookstore, who you had a particular story to tell.
- I’ve always had an entrepreneurial spirit even though I don’t like ‘sales’. I know, sounds like a conflict of interests, but it is not. I love putting into the hands of people something they will benefit from, enjoy, and love even. I don’t like to have to sell them on it unless I know they will benefit from my product or service. I’m not a pushy person and I don’t care for confrontation. What I do like is sharing something new and exciting with people, and I really do like the stories that I write.
- I find technology fascinating. Social media is always evolving. There are so many ways to communicate that it boggles my mind. The far-reaching aspects of being able to reach the heart of someone on the other side of the planet with one of my stories pushes me to want to pin words every day for them. The idea that I can be sitting next to someone on the train to work and they can be reading my book on their Kindle is awe-inspiring indeed.
- I want to read clean, non-scary, fun-filled stories with people of many races and cultures interacting. I write stores I love and there are people that want the type of stories I write. Clean reads are not mainstream. Diversity is not a product found in most popular literature, just like it is not in movies. You might get one or two token characters from a culture outside of Caucasian races, and they are usually the same handful you see repeatedly over the past twenty-five years or so.
Truth be told, I never really tried the traditional way of publishing my books. I started my writing career as a poet and getting a book of poetry published is a very frustrating and unfruitful experience. So when I went over to writing stories, I would just write them for myself.
|Doubt that I am don’t the right thing or missing a step in the process rides me like a toothless cowboy on a mule.|
One day I went to a book reader conference to meet my favorite author at the time, Olivia Gaines, and that weekend I discovered the world of self-publish authors of romance novels. I wanted to be a part of them and the fun lifestyle of the indie writer. In two weeks I wrote my first novel and within two months I had it published in the world of Amazon books.
I am hooked and am hoping to grow my love of storytelling into a thriving business of writing and teaching. It’s been quite a learning curve for me to turn writing into a business. Completing my second book is not as easy for me as the first book was. Mostly because while writing on the book, I have built a website that I try to be consistent about posting articles on. I work a fulltime job that actually pays my bills so that factors in too.
The hardest part is reminding myself to keep at it every day because I love to write and I love the business of writing, as I hustle not making a living from what I love, as of yet. It’s frustrating when I go a day and no one has clicked onto my website, and tear-jerking when a week or two goes by without any hits. Doubt that I am don’t the right thing or missing a step in the process rides me like a toothless cowboy on a mule. It ain’t pretty.
One day it will be though. Until then, I’m having fun!