Ridley: We’re only starting out on our self-publishing journey, so we certainly are nowhere near experts to be talking about it but I’m going to be doing it anyway! I’m not going to share invaluable information (and it’s not because I’m selfish, it’s because I don’t have any wisdom nuggets to share, yet! Maybe one day!). I want to write about my impressions, the view point of a beginner just starting out on this incredible journey. It’s like I’ve entered a new world. Even just peering out the window at this new place, never mind walking through the door out into it, has been absolutely fantastic.
The people in the self-publishing community are extremely welcoming and encouraging. Or is it really the twitter and blogging communities combined? With each person at the varying stages of working on their own novels, you can find knowledge and support and great reads!
I love that you can read an e-book, where if you love it enough, the minute you’re finished, you can pop online and let the author know. You can actually have a conversation with them. As a fan, it’s everything I would have ever dreamed of as a girl. As an author, it’s amazing instant feedback and gratification.
Then there’s the wide range of ideas and stories that you can obtain through reading self-published works. No longer do you have to roam the bookstore and leave a little fed up having found nothing. (Though to be fair, even if I don’t find anything, I still love wandering round in the hush, inhaling that calming book smell.) It’s just sometimes it feels like there’s nothing available to read. It’s understandable that traditional publishers hedge their bets; they stick to formula and topics that have worked. It costs them too much to take too many chances. It just can get very ‘samey’ and boring.
Not so with an e-book publisher. They don’t have the same risks. They don’t need to justify that, Such and Such by Jane Doe did well, mine is just like it. Now they can say, my book is like nothing else on the market and I think it’s a real winner. This creates a colourful and exciting pool of very imaginative and different books.
Before I opened up my mind though, I’d always had that horrible stereotypical view that self-publishing was for people that had given up, failed to get anyone interested in their work and decided to do it on their own. No matter how good their book, the resources were never available to market it to anyone other than close friends and relatives. How many garages across the country are cluttered with boxes of glossy books filled with words no one has ever read?
No longer is this the case.
The power, the influence of the internet just continues to increase and it’s not a selfish medium. It lends this power to anyone who looks for it. Through it, we can reach almost every part of the world.
Even if your book is about the eating practices of a specific worm from a never heard of forest on a distant remote island, someone somewhere will be interested in it. Even if it’s just one person, it’s one more than you could have touched with your writing before this. Better yet, you will have found a kindred spirit.
Dreams are what get us all up in the morning. So many people gaze out their windows and fantasise. Maybe they envision becoming an international dancer, an actor, an animator, a trapeze artist, a fireman, a wealthy CEO.
Now though, for those of us dreaming of becoming authors, we’re incredibly lucky. We’re in a new age where we can make it happen. We’ve been handed the tools to enable us to achieve our dreams.
Not many can say that.
So for anyone reading this, dream big and reach for the stars. They’re there for the taking all you have to do is believe it.
All photos in this post are from freedigitalphotos.net