After an interesting Kindle Scout campaign, I’ve been informed that Kindle Press will not be publishing my newest novel, “A Love Story for a Nation.” Am I disappointed? Yes and no. Yes, because I put a lot of effort into the campaign and even more effort into the story. I really believe in this story and the type of impact it will have on its readers. For that reason, I think it’s a great book to be published. No because that’s the way it is in publishing. It’s an extremely tough and competitive business and one has to expect rejection far more than acceptance. That’s just the nature of the beast. But I have to remind myself why I’m doing this in the first place. I’m not writing for a sea-side house in Santorini. I’m a writer because I have stories in my head which need to be told, and one little rejection isn’t going to stop me from pursuing my dream. Or it’s not going to affect my desire and drive to write in the slightest. If anything, rejection is a challenge. I don’t want to accomplish things which are easy. I want to do what people believe I can’t. I want to learn and grow and figure out what I can experience in life. I love being an independent author, and so the great thing about this is that I get to continue doing what I love. No, it isn’t easy, but bring it on. I’m really excited about “A Love Story for a Nation.” It will be releasing in paperback and Kindle on July 1. I hope you enjoy, and once again, thank you for your support!
Honestly, it feels like I’ve been “out there” as an author for 15 years. Has it really been only 15 months?
A simple check of the math will attest to the fact that, yes, indeed I released my first novel 15 months ago in December 2012. So much has happened since then that I have trouble thinking about what it actually means to be “out there”. But I’ve learned a lot and I’m excited to see where I’ll be after 30 months. For the meantime, let me ponder a few things I can now say with some certainty.
1. I love being an indie author. Sure it would be great to be able to write for a living, but I don’t regret at all everything I get to be involved with as an Indie author. I am completely free to write when I want, publish when I want, promote when I want, and hide myself in a corner when I want. I love picking my own book covers, finding my own editors, interacting with book bloggers and reviewers, and just daily navigating blindly the new world of publishing. It’s darn-right exciting.
2. I’ve learned that being an indie author is extremely time consuming. There is never an awkward pause where I wonder what I should do now. Granted, sometimes I pause because I am slightly overwhelmed by the many tasks I need to do but don’t know how to find time to accomplish.
3. I’ve also learned to keep life and expectations as simple as possible. I’ll have an occasional promotion weekend when I’ll go gang-busters over contacting an insane amount of people concerning a variety of promotions or reviews. After than, I might not contact anyone for a while as I concentrate on writing, editing, revising, and just plain-old life.
4. Don’t let the highs be too high or the lows be too low. I always have great expectations. I believe in my writing and I believe one day it will find a wider audience. In the meantime, I greatly appreciate every kind word and positive review, but I try not to get too carried away by any one positive word at a time. Likewise, when a bad review rolls in, I try to think about it in a level-headed manner. I try to learn from it, but ultimately try not to think about it too much. Roll with the punches and move forward.
5. I’ve learned to enjoy blogging. I honestly had no idea what to blog about when I started sometime back in 2012. But with everything else, I’ve just learned to be myself. Write about whatever comes to my mind. The last thing I want to do is try to be a pretentious blogger. That’s not me. I hope that comes through on my blog. That’s probably also the reason that I am a reluctant and awkward tweeter. I can’t figure out what the heck Twitter is good for, and I’m sure it shows!
6. More than anything else, I’ve realized that I’m in this, this indie author thing, for the long haul. I’ve never felt more complete or purposeful with my life than when I am writing. It feels like I have found my calling and I’m going to keep churning out my ideas as long as they exist.
So when 15 months turns into 15 years, I hope to look back on this post and more clearly understand where I came from.
This is an amazing time to be an indie author. I feel like the luckiest guy in the world. I have a laptop. I have time. I have ideas. What more could I want?
Indie authors don’t get excited about huge launch parties or six figure book deals.
Indie authors don’t get excited about a hard-working agent that believes in them and shops their books to all the big publishers.
Indie authors don’t get excited about reviews from the New York Times.
Indie authors don’t get excited about the Oprah Book Club or Bill O’Reilly’s tip of the day.
No, for indie authors it’s the little things that matter most.
Remember the first review you got from someone you didn’t know? When The Kindle Book Review published their review for Beauty Rising, I was floating on air for a day thinking I had arrived.
Remember when the 10th person on Goodreads added your book to their shelf?
Remember when you got your first email from a stranger telling you how much they enjoyed your book?
I have even been fortunate enough to have been on the receiving end of a piece of fan art. I mean, how cool is that?
Life as an indie author is hard. No doubt. That’s why the little victories mean so much. This week I had a little victory of sorts. My first novel, Beauty Rising, which was released 15 months ago just received its 100th rating on Goodreads. I’m thrilled.
No matter how many books I sell the rest of my life, be it two or two million, I vow to always remember the little things which are, in fact, not little at all.
I will always appreciate any reader who takes their precious time to read my book when there are millions of other choices. I wall always be grateful for someone who goes out of their way to write a review. I’m sure there are better things to do with their time. It’ means so much!
I will cherish the little victories because it is moments like this that make life worth it all.
You can have your six figure book deal. I’m thrilled to have my 100th rating on Goodreads.