Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Modern Author's Dilemma

I can't help myself. I am thinking about a sequel series to new trilogy I just finished. I suppose I would have to. Even when I reached the end of the third book it did not get a feeling that it was "over."

I wrote four novels in a year, not counting my journal. Plus I edited the new novel, Huvek, one last time before it was published. I'm a fairly prolific writer, and my ideas are pretty big much of the time. It's the publishing part that's fucking slow. I'm getting tired of waiting for someone else to decide it's worth publishing, waiting for other people in general. It's the fantasy of self-publishing:


Modern author's situation
I just got rejected again. It was a well-targeted submission, but I got a form letter in return. Tenth one this month. How do I get noticed?!

Modern author's fantasy
Why do I need approval from the establishment? Why should I wait for a publisher to get moving and release my stuff? It's the modern era! I'll take my work to the people and let them decide I'm a wonderful writer!

Modern author's self-published reality
A million other authors are doing the same goddamed thing! Now I'm in the same situation I was in before I self-published! How do I get noticed?

BONUS: Modern author's traditionally-published reality
Yay, I just published a book! But it's still up to me to promote my work? How do I get noticed?


Even with all that said, sometimes I wonder if I should just do it. Get my stuff out there. Don't wait for some authority to decree I'm worth publishing. Don't be at the mercy of a company deciding if my stuff is financially worth publishing, telling me what genre I can write in, or what content sells and doesn't sell.

Damn it, I don't know what to do. Only that I'm starting to feel like time is ticking away and I need to hurry up and get out there before it's too late. It's a dilemma that did not exist for authors of the previous generation. You went through a publisher, or you were not published. Now we have an alternative, and I am leery of it.

The argument is that games and music and comic books have succeeded without big publishers, so why not authors? But writing is not the same as music or games. Indie games have garnered great respect. Indie music has a lot of respect. Indie film has a lot of support. But indie books still carry a stigma of poor quality, lazy, mary-sue-filled writing. If I release my work, it will be into a sea of that. Hard enough to sell a published book. The difficulty of selling an indie book is tenfold and I don't want to kill my chance to reach a large audience by jumping the gun.

I have yet to read a good indie book. Read a couple decent ones, but I still had to take them with a grain of salt, remembering they're indie and to give 'em leeway. Other indie books I read the sample, and was not impressed. So I implore any readers out there to show me a good, quality indie book. Show me that indie authors are not just impatient. Show me that indie books deserve respect, like indie musicians and indie games.

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