Three months ago I said I was not going to submit to anymore agents or publishers. I said I “was not going to wait for someone to tell me that I am good enough”, but three months ago I had just barely stepped into the ring, joining the legions of self-published authors swimming against the tide to claim the title for “Best Seller”. I had no idea that there was more than agreeing to the terms and conditions that Amazon required before one’s book was live and ready for purchase. Writing the book was easy. The hard part is marketing and building a platform. I am a part of Lord knows how many Facebook author/writer/blogger/editor groups my news feed is a long list of confusion. And, in each and every one of those groups that claim to offer support and advice to authors is just another place for authors to saturate news feeds with their latest works, and it makes it difficult for anyone to make any sense of it all.
Then, there are the authors who consider themselves established because they are selling more than $1.50 a week, and their noses are so up their own behinds they hardly want to offer any advice to a newbie author for reasons that are more than obvious. Self-publishing has become a cut throat swamp of authors who only think about themselves-which they should to some degree because the hard work as well as the costs fall on their shoulders, but still. Authors should support each other because who is better suited to understand the highs and lows of writing? So unless one can quit their day jobs and live lavishly off of their work, there is still much more ground to cover and it doesn’t hurt to at least throw someone who is new to the game a bone.
Three months ago I did not have anything else in completion that I could believe in again that would capture the attention of an agent or a publisher. Now I do. I finished Blind Salvation two weeks ago, spent hours working on my queries, synopsis, outline and researching potential agents and publishers that might spend less than 15 seconds on my submission and I decided to give it another go. Self-publishing is fine…its perfect for those who want 100% control over their work but I could not go another year writing something that I am in love with without trying to see if an agent would love what I had I had devoted a great portion of myself too. 11 agents and 13 publishers later, so far I have been declined by four, which is fine and I am waiting to see what the others will have to say. In three months I will know if I will be offered a contract, or if I should go back to the drawing board or just focus on developing my career in self publishing.
In the mean time I am working on four additional works to keep my mind off of sitting around checking my email every 15 seconds for a reply. In the mean time I have also created a personal website, an author page, and I have been offering my services to other independent authors to help promote their newest releases. I have also scored a book on self publishing to help me further understand what I am up against and in three months time when I reflect on this blog, I will be much more in tuned with myself as writer, as a business person (because let’s face it, the books that we authors create are our brands), and should a newbie author ask for a bone, I will give him or her a whole dinner plate. I guess I should use the quarter system to evaluate my personal growth: all I need is three months time.