So, here I am doing something I would have never imagined. I am taking the road less travelled by; the one I never knew existed.
For decades my dream was to get published. I did get published and it was not anything like my dream. The process itself was tedious and stressful.
I’ve been a writer all my life. I have confidence in my work. Do I really need to wait like a beggar knocking on the doors of publishers and agents, a few of whom might even condescend to answer? Do I really need a form refusal from an intern – who may have been in that publishing house a month or two – telling me that my book is unpublishable?
I don’t have anything against publishers. My book Mantramala, which was traditionally published, is in second edition and selling well. I am writing another nonfiction book which will go to a publisher who has shown interest – and hopefully that will work out. A responsive and open publisher is still a very good deal for any writer.
What I do object to is the process. I have had enough of that and do not plan to go back. Do writers really need this? Is this 2015 or is this the 12th century? Well, let’s just say that the year I live in is 2015 – that may not be true of everyone and much of publishing does not seem to have arrived in the 21st century as yet.
So, I am moving on, thanks to the wonderful opportunities available in self-publishing. I am doing it all myself and hope to have an eBook up this month or by May at the latest. It’s an interesting journey and I am going to blog about it – helps keep me focused.
I never thought I would be doing it all – designing my cover, writing the blurb, formatting, uploading. In case you are wondering, no, I haven’t a clue how to do all that as yet. But I will learn. Of course, I will. The delight of it will keep me going. My own book. I get to do my own cover. I get to do it all and if I make mistakes – excellent. That is how I learn, by making mistakes. Unlike the ponderous mechanism of traditional publishing, in eBooks you can easily correct anything at all.
What I really like is the lack of stress. I am working at my own comfortable pace. I do have a daily schedule and deadlines – but they are my own. All the decisions are mine too. I don’t have to deal with cranky and rigid mindsets.
To be honest, this step would not have been possible without going through the very hard school of traditional publishing. It’s tough but you learn what a professional standard is. If I had not published a book and countless stories and articles I would not have known. If I had not been rejected hundreds of times I would not have learned what is good quality and what is bad. To give them their due, I learned the hard way in the toughest school of them all, to which entry is extremely restricted.
It was a good education, thank you.
But I have graduated now.
Let the party begin.