Note II: I cancelled the scheduling feature on this post three times. That's how much I hate publicly admitting my frustration. LOL Oh well. If nothing else, it proves I'm not a robot...
Being an author is similar to, if not the equivalent of, running a small business. I could go into all of the reasons why, but one in particular stands out—if you don’t have the funds, it’s ridiculously hard to compete.
Yes, writing is steeped in imagination. We live in places where anything is possible. But at the end of the day, we want to publish our stories. That drags us kicking and screaming back into a cold, green world.
With enough money, you can:
• Hire an assistant or publicist
• Purchase exclusive photography/model releases
• Gain widespread exposure (BookBub, etc.)
• Pay for fancypants reviews (Kirkus, etc.)
• Reach a multitude of reviewers (NetGalley)
• Network with industry professionals via large conferences
• Bait readers with major incentives (giving away iPads, e-readers, etc.)
• Artificially inflate your social media presence (which is stupid)
• Advertise and promote posts
It’s a huge advantage over those of us who struggle to justify our careers, because we can't always pay the bills. And that’s not even including the costs indies have to factor in: editors, stock photos (or photographer fees), graphic designers, formatting for paperbacks and e-books, giant blocks of ISBNs, copyrights, etc. Yuck.
So, why don't I push myself to make more money and save for these things? It's complicated...
My background is in marketing—and if we’re being honest, I was really good at it—but I still can’t force myself to write for the market in order to earn a living. My stories are too tame for NA's present, mainstream audience (even though my series was one of the first on the NA scene.), and I can't afford to highlight/angle them as something outside the box. So, where does that leave me?
I plan on continuing my efforts to help NA expand and diversify, but there’s only so much we can do from the industry side. Readers have to want/accept change. So, until them, I’ve decided it doesn’t matter. I’m going to cast a wide net, writing in any category or genre that inspires me, and plod along. Since I don’t have a paycheck parachute, I’ll keep doing most things (formatting, design, etc.) myself.
Even if it puts me behind schedule
Even if I sometimes feel like I'm drowning.
The way I see it, if I’m stuck with the role of underdog, I may as well play the hell out of it. Onward!
Question of the Week:
What’s one thing about this industry/path that frustrates you?
P.S. This chorus is semi-on-topic, and the cheesiness of the video cracks me up. Enjoy. ;)