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Saturday, March 17, 2012

My very first post revisited.

I just read my very first post, which I wrote over a year ago, in which I muse about living and writing and wonder if we writers are insane. (see it here if you wish, it's quite short) The question of insanity still seems relevant.

At the time of my first post I was still in the traditional publishing mode: write a book, query an agent, receive a zillion rejections, then give up. Or, miraculously get an agent, then get rejected by every publisher in the world. Or, miracle of miracles, get accepted by a reputable publisher, and, after a lifetime of struggling, actually see my book get published. Then, like 80% of all books published, it doesn't even earn back the royalties I was paid. All the while, working on my next project. It does seem a bit crazy to devote thousands of hours to such endeavors. But I was doing it and, to some degree, I still am.

Then I discovered self-publishing ebooks. I thought about it long and hard. Should I do it? What does it mean if I do it? Will I be the scourge of the publishing world? Will I lose all my friends? Will I be looked at as a failure? Is self-publishing a form of suicide? Well, a lot of people were doing it, and some were even making a living at it. Then I wondered what have I got to lose. I mean really, who cares how your book is published, as long as it's out there? Right? I don't know. All I know is that I saw no future whatsoever in the traditional model. So, I self-pubbed a book of short stories, just because. Just because I wanted to see if I could do it. I wanted to learn the ropes. And learn them I did. And now I've self-pubbed a novel. It seems like the publishing world has turned upside down between the time I published my first book and my second a year later.

I'm now part of a growing fraternity of self-publishers. I no longer feel so insane. In fact, I feel as if I've found sanity in an insane world. Of course, the insane don't know they're insane. That's the beauty of insanity. So, maybe I'm insane and just don't know it, which might be a form of sanity. Anyway, it's been a fantastic year and a marvelous journey. And it ain't over yet.
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