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The Emotional Roller Coaster of Self-publishing

I’m exhausted. Tomorrow is Greg’s birthday and I plan to force him to take the day off to go do something fun. Usually this is not an issue. If I say, “Hey I think we should take the day off,” then he’s usually all for it. But it’s been raining for two weeks straight, and neither of us are crazy about driving in torrential downpours. At the very least I will drag him off dinner somewhere.

Besides the fact, that it is indeed his birthday, and I’d never let it go uncelebrated, the truth is I need to get away from the computer. I torched for six hours tonight and it was a joy to just sit there and work. But here I am back at the computer doing publishing stuff.

Yesterday was an emotional high. The book got here. It’s gorgeous. I love it. I held it in my hands. All that lovely stuff. Then I uploaded files for Kindle, PubIt!, etc. I spent all day doing that. Then I got an email this morning about a typo on the first page. The first page! No less than five people have proofed this book and it was professionally edited. We all missed it. Every single one of us. I don’t fault anyone. No one can catch everything in a full length novel.  But my high fizzled into a “Oh my God!” I already ordered the first round of books. What if there are a ton more?

I don’t really think there are a ton more. Greg did find one on page 76 today. It was very minor. Again something easy to overlook. The great thing about self-publishing is I can reload all those files with the changes. Not really that big of a deal. But still all of the work to get here and it being my first book, I am just exhausted. Mentally worn out.

Oh, I know. All books, even the ones from New York have typos that slip through. It happens all the time. No matter how hard you try to avoid it, it happens.

On the other hand, I am so thrilled with positive response y’all have had to this book. I can’t thank you enough for believing in me. Thank you for sharing in the excitement. It’s meant the world to me.

UPS and Something I've been waiting for--Favorite things Monday

Yes! I spent my morning anxiously waiting for UPS to get here. My office is in the front of the house, and the blinds are wide open. You’d think with the dogs always on the lookout for strangers they’d bark right? They usually do.

But, no. Neither dog barked. My UPS man did not ring my doorbell like usual and I did not hear the truck. I have no idea what time he got here or how long my book was waiting for me on the front steps.

But it’s here!

It’s a true testament to my willpower that I didn’t run around screaming through the house. You see, Greg was in the studio and had I created a ruckus, that might have proved to be dangerous since he was working with hot glass at the time.

Instead, I sent an email with a lot of !!!! to Lisa Liddy, my book designer, who is undoubtedly wondering why in the heck I haven’t been posting all over Facebook, Twitter, and any other place I can randomly spew with glee.

I was just busy getting the efiles ready to go. I’ll let you know as soon as they show up in the various outlets (a few days I think).

In the meantime, you can now pre-order a signed copy of the book from right here. I ordered a small print run because I’ve had requests. They should be here early next week and as soon as they get here, I’ll be getting the handy pen ready and shipping them out.

Whooo hooo! Finally.

Favorite Things Monday-er Tuesday

Mondays are always super busy and for that reason alone, I usually find myself with the dreaded Monday blues. So, over the weekend I decided I’d have Mondays be Favorite Things day on the blog. You know. A place to talk about things that make me warm and fuzzy or squeal with glee.

Of course, I found myself swamped yesterday with stuff and I didn’t get the post written. (Please. I’m not organized enough to do my posts in advance and that would defeat the purpose of Favorite Things Monday anyway. The whole point is to take  a few moments to focus on something that makes me smile). Obviously I failed at my first cheerful Monday post.

That means I have two things for Tuesday. Or three really.

First up: My boys. Little balls of energy and kisses.

Someone should really gives these scrubs a haircut.

Next up. The finished manuscript. My editor sent the word file back while I was at Bead and Button. Last night I finished my edits and revisions. I’ll be doing one more read through, then it’s off for a final copy edit on the changes I made. Holy Crap. Almost there!

Exciting News

It’s official. I have secured an editor and a book designer for my paranormal romance, Haunted on Bourbon Street. My final draft will go to my editor in mid May. This means I am shooting for a July release date. A release date, that sounds so official. Squeal!

I am nervous and super excited at the same time. If you’ve paid attention at all to the publishing world you know things are changing and fast. With ereaders steadily rising in popularity, more and more people are moving to the ebook format. I myself got my NOOK in December and I’m pretty sure I’ve already bought more books this year than I did all of last year. It’s so easy. Just turn it on and the whole book store is in my hands and I don’t have to worry if the title is in stock. It’s amazing.

With that in mind and the ability to publish to Amazon’s Kindle format and Barnes & Noble’s PubIt, it makes it so much easier for authors to get their work out there without waiting years to find an agent and/or a publisher. I don’t have stars in my eyes over the recent Amanda Hocking news-the self-publishing phenomenon who made almost two million dollars in one year self-publishing. I know it’s hard work and Amanda’s story, while no doubt she worked very hard for her success, is not even remotely normal. Still, there is a future for self-published authors and I am no stranger to marketing my work or finding an audience. I’ve been doing it for ten years with the lampwork business.

So wish me luck on my newest endeavor. I’ll be sure to let you know the exact release date and the status of the rest of the series. And for my bead followers, don’t worry, you can still find me at my torch everyday.

P.s. For those of you without ereaders just yet, I will also be releasing a print version.

Edited to add this blog post by Joe Konrath:

While I think his delivery is a little over the top, he touches on many of the reasons I decided to self-publish. That’s not to say I’ll ever rule out traditional publishing. A writer can do both and there are benefits both ways.

Thought provoking...

One of the many blogs I read is Mr Nathan Bransford. This week he posted a hypothetical question. I am paraphrasing here, basically the question is “Would you still write if you absolutely knew you wouldn’t get published (at least by a “real” publishing house and not self publish) and be successful.

I find this interesting on many levels. For one, if writing is a passion and something a person gets enjoyment from what difference does it make if said person gets published or not? Oh I know all about the validation and the joy of so called success, but what I really mean is, if you love to do something, won’t you do it even if fame and fortune doesn’t come along with it? Maybe said person won’t work as hard to get a manuscript extra, extra polished, or maybe they will. Certainly they could spare all that wasted time trying to find an agent and/or publisher, but if it is passion, won’t you just write because you like it?

Second, as with anything practice makes for a better crafts person. Does practice make perfect? I highly doubt it. But a person certainly will get better at what they do, if they keep practicing and learning along the way.

Third, if an artist or crafts person is only doing what they do for the potential money, they are not likely to be successful anyway. Maybe people who say they would quit writing if they didn’t get published, just don’t realize most writers do not become rich and famous. In fact a great many of them cannot afford to write as their full time job. With this in mind, why would a person choose to only write for the money?

Forth it is certainly okay to love to do something, even when a person knows they may not be naturally gifted in an artist sense. Writing is an art, just as glass working is. It can also be a craft. Or maybe both to the same person.

To me writing is a skill, just as lampworking is a skill. When I was first learning glasswork, I was certain I would never make anything good enough to sell, and was even more certain I wouldn’t ever make a living at it. I was pretty sure I didn’t even want to try that. But here we are 4 and a half years later and lampworking is my full time job and I love it. If I found I could no longer sell my work, I am certain I would still melt glass, it just may take a different turn. I would play and experiment a lot more. Certainly I wouldn’t make nearly the amount of production I do now, but I would still be found out there melting glass.

So, would I stop writing if I knew I didn’t have the chops to get published. Heck no! Right now I am doing it because I like it. Really like it. When I am done writing the novel, I will reread and rework it and probably will try to shop it. I mean really, why not? Doesn’t hurt to try. I highly doubt I will stop writing if it goes nowhere, which is highly likely. Right now writing is in the “This is what I like to do” column. If the joy of writing goes away, then I will put the pen down. Not when the agents or publishers tell me NO.

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