For the Blogging From A to Z Challenge I’m doing you all a huge favor and filling you in on the 26 Things To Hate About Writing.** I’m hoping by the end of April, I will have convinced all of you not to indulge in the wild insanity of becoming a writer. If I can save even one person from offering themselves up in sacrifice to the mad and fickle word gods, I will have done some good in this world.
This post is for the people who have tried, or are thinking about trying, self-publishing. As if being a writer isn’t crazy enough, you are, or want to be, the publisher as well. For the rest of you big-time traditionally published authors rolling in your bestseller money, get the heck out of here so we can talk in private. Go on, get! We don’t want your kind around here.
All right, now that they’re gone…
Self-publishing has numerous benefits. You get to retain creative control, and the money, and if you’re already traditionally published you know not all publishers are created equal. Some of them, you might as well have self-published in the first place for all they help you. Dirty Dick’s House of Writers based in Vermont isn’t going to get you on the NYT bestseller list, probably, even if they’re technically a ‘publisher.’ But self-publishing is a lot of work, as well, and you should remember:
– You have to do everything, and pay for everything: editing, cover art, formatting, getting the book up on sales channels. But as most movies about writers tell us, all of us have a trust fund or a great aunt who died and left us a fortune, and we spend our days in front of an ancient typewriter smoking a pipe and gazing out the window at green meadows, so you shouldn’t have to worry about this.
– You also have to do your own promoting, and if you think most people don’t care what you have to say now, wait until you tell them you wrote a book. You have to do targeted promoting, which means finding the audience that loves stories about child serial killers with talking pet goldfish. The BookBub listing for this category is $3000.
– You will find you’re not nearly as artistic at creating covers or adept with publishing software as you dreamed yourself to be. Just have your five year-old nephew create some ‘abstract art’ in Paint that really speaks to the theme of the story.
Self-publishing can be very rewarding. In some aspects, it’s like buying yourself a trophy for a job well done, but hey, you got a trophy and most people won’t even have any idea you bought it yourself, they’ll just congratulate you. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to see your accomplishments flourish out there in the world. Self-publishing can also be the worst thing ever, because it’s expensive, difficult, and it’s easy to drown in a sea of other books. Don’t worry about that. Smoke your pipe and get back to writing, you’ve got to finish the sequel to your child serial killer goldfish book: Killer Tots 2: Things Get Fishier.
**Disclaimer: If you haven’t figured it out, these posts are pure satire and simply a humorous way to vent my writing frustrations. No offense is intended to anyone. Please, become or continue being a writer. It’s awesome, I swear. It’s super…duper, awesome…heh heh.
Urban fantasy and paranormal romance author.