Monday, January 23, 2012

Literary Sailing

I love learning. I really do. I’m even trying to learn a Western Asian language, mostly for fun. (It is kicking my behind, in case you are wondering, but I could ask for water.) Anyway, constantly learning new things excites me. I’ve always wanted to be someone who spoke ten languages (including dead ones), who knew where all the countries in the world are (I don’t), and who could talk intelligently about just about every topic. I’m not there yet, or even close. Good thing I plan to live to be 113.

But right now, I’m trying to learn something new and it is making my head a little fuzzy. I never imagined myself self-publishing. I was going to write books that every agent would want, get an awesome book deal, and trust my career to the professionals while I got to play in fiction for more than a living wage. It still could happen, but I’ve recently decided that I’m ready for a new adventure with my writing, and one way to make that happen is self-publishing.

But to self-publish, I have to learn a lot about the ways that things work, things I really know nothing about (not unlike when, years ago, I submitted my first novel without knowing anything at all). Some people learn everything first, but I decided that learning all the stats about failure would shut me down. I’m glad I wrote what I wanted to write and lived in the dream of easy success for a while. Reality came; it does for all of us. But I was ready to learn when the time came.

Now, thanks to a lot of blogs and Googling, I’m reading about self-publishing and it is enough to make my head pop right off and roll across the room. People have such different takes on it, and without an agent or advocate, I’m left to make all the decisions myself. While a little scary, I’m finding myself getting excited about this adventure (which was the point). I get to design my cover (which I will be releasing very soon). I get to decide on the final edits (with the help of many lovely beta readers). I get to decide about book trailers and websites. I get to steer this book ship, and that is amazing.

I know I will stumble along the way and that steering the ship isn’t always the easiest thing to do. I know that there will be no billions of dollars and a swimming pool shaped like a Hobbit Hole, but I’m so very excited about feeling some control in a journey that has at times left me feeling powerless. So, I’m taking the power back, baby, and seeing where this ship leads me.

I hope you’ll help out by giving feedback on covers, web designs, book trailers, and such. It might be my ship, but since I’m clueless about where fore and aft are, I’m going to be needing some help.

Hope everyone has a happy Monday!

Quote for the Day from Robert N. Rose

“Ships are the nearest things to dreams that hands have ever made.”


Shelley Sly said...

Hi there! I'm happy for you that you're figuring out what you want to do and how to get there. That's very admirable. :)

I'm still in the middle of that process. I'm querying a novel, but having second thoughts, wondering if I should go with a small press or even self-publish.

I wish you good luck with your book and can't wait to see the cover!

Debra Lynn Lazar said...

You nailed it, sister! I can't wait to see where this new journey takes you. And, for the record, I hope your boat ride includes sunset cruises with fruity cocktails. ;-)

Indigo said...

Beautiful quote!

I think the writing journey is different for everyone. We each travel our own path. In the end you're the only one who truly knows what's best for you.

Can't wait to see the cover. (Hugs)Indigo

Jolene Perry said...

There are so many great things that come from self-pubbing. I'd imagine the biggest relief is having CONTROL of the process :D

best of luck to you!!

Jemi Fraser said...

So exciting to be doing this! There are a TON of fabulous epubbed books out there. I know yours will be one of them! Can't wait! :)