Why Indie Works for Me

I know why indie publishing works for so many authors.  They like feeling empowered–raising hand–and going straight to their readers without a middleman.  Those things appeal to me, but there are more.

1. Write to my own schedule. 

One thing that worried me when I was pursuing the elusive NY contract.  Deadlines.  Pre-mommy days, I made all of my deadlines for all of my previous books with time to spare.  Now that I’m a mom, my free time is dedicated to Baby Girl.  Unless NY paid me enough money to quit my day job–seven figures–that won’t change.  The only reason why I can put out as many books as I have planned for this year is because most of them are already written and need polishing.  Polishing is a lot easier and faster than first-drafting.

2.  Experiment with endless possibilities.

I’ve been trying to write something “fresh” for so long that it’s hard for me to stick with one thing for more than one story.  I’m trying, but it’s like I have ADD with each book I write.  I like trying new and different things.  Things not thought of before.  My Hex Series is really easy to do because it’s basically a series of interconnected stories where the focus is around curses.  I don’t think I could get away with that in NY.  In fact, I don’t know of one Urban Fantasy writer who does stand-alone novels.  So, going indie let’s me be bold and gives me the ability to try something different. 

3.    Getting paid.

Bittersweet isn’t a blockbuster.  It might take a long time before it is, assuming it ever happens.  But it’s done one thing for me that my other back-burner stories haven’t.  It’s making money.  Since it’s debut on March 4th, I’ve only sold 31 copies with Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords combined.  That’s $64 more than any of my back burner stories.  And to think Bittersweet was about to join them.  Thankfully, I believed enough in this story to be too bullheaded to shelf it.  $64 amounts to two large packs of diapers, some baby wipes, and a talking (Not Tickle-Me) Elmo doll that my daughter loves and is driving me nuts.  😆  But the hilarity that belts out of Baby Girl whenever she flips Elmo’s mouth open and he sings or laughs back: priceless.  So yeah, Bittersweet is a huge success for me.  😀

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13 thoughts on “Why Indie Works for Me

  1. And that success is only going to grow! In a few months, you could be seeing five times that sales number. Or more! I bought the book, but sadly haven’t started reading it yet. I’m still working through Kelly Keaton’s DARKNESS BECOMES HER. It’s good, just not having a lot of time to read. I’m so excited you are Indie publishing!

    • Are you kidding me? Don’t feel sad, girlfriend. I feel honored that you bought my book. I hope you enjoy it as much as I’ve enjoyed the Peachville Demons. Talk about a light, quick, fun-to-read book. I haven’t gotten to #3 yet, but I’m working toward it.

      That’s the main reason why I have such an aggressive publishing schedule this year. I’m giving myself the kinds of chances that NY never would, so I’m making the most of it and enjoying the journey with every sale.

  2. Very well put. So many writers are caught up on the old stigma that once accompanied self-publishing. They’d rather have zero readers and earn zero dollars while they wait for New York, or no-pay lit journals, to smile on them.

    You’ll find your readership. Don’t stop marketing. Don’t stop learning. And most of all, don’t stop publishing your work.

    • Thanks for stopping by, Candace. 😀

      You are SO right. JA Konrath mentioned something in his blog about the writer’s ego and it has stuck with to this day. Things like trying to get the NY contract, get into the lit magazines, and landing an agent all appeal to the writer’s ego. And what does that ego cost? Thousands, if not tens of because it’s money you’ve lost that you could’ve been making. I’m appealing to a readership now and have found my joy in writing again. My hope is that readers see it, too.

  3. Self-publishing is empowering! I love it, too. It took me a while to get going, but now I’m doing all right. I sold 1500 books in March alone. I was thrilled! Most of them were for Dead People, which is my 99 cent book, so I’m not making a winning wage. Yet. But that’s coming. By the end of the year, I think. I need to get more books out there!

    • Tell me about it, girlfriend. You and Zoe Winters have been my #1 sources of inspiration since I decided to take this path. I know you’re going to hit 10,000 well before the end of this year. Now THAT you can start to make a living on or at least plan for it. Between watching you and Sarra and your numbers going up, it makes me all the more excited to get there, too.

  4. I’m hearing more and and more about authors going this route. I’m FINALLY nearing the end of my revisions for the superhero story it has taken me about a year to revise. (Took time off to work on my husband’s business.) And I love this story, but I doubt any mainstream pub house will take a chance on it. It has sci-fi and paranormal elements. They probably won’t know how to market it. So it may end up going indie. When I hear about the issues authors have with publishers and getting next to nothing in payments, then I wonder whether going that route is even worth it. For me, I’m interested in going to an established publisher for street cred, to feel validated. But more and more I’m seeing others gain it through creating loyal fans directly. Just because a big name pub likes your stuff, it doesn’t guarantee success. Plus, I’m getting more and more frustrated over the amount of writing friends who have amazing talent but keep getting turned away from the industry. It’s unbelievable.

    You go, girl! Keep it up. I’m so proud of all that you’ve been able to accomplish. You definitely inspire me. 🙂

    • Aw sweetie. You and I need to talk. I’ll email you privately because I have so much to say that I’ll probably hose up my own blog.

      But I will say this. Regardless of what anyone might say, definitely keep indie as an option. Both Sarra and Edie had NO street cred and they’re selling like crazy. Even better, they’re not the only ones. Their street cred is their fan base, which is the way the writing should be. After all, we’re writing to reach readers. Not to publishers. Having fans who love your books is all the cred you’ll ever need. Seriously. 😉

  5. So why did I read #3 and thought you wrote “Getting Laid”? sigh. I’m happy you are happy about this. Like I said in my indie ode to you lol, I’m excited about reading many indie goodies this year. Um, what are you getting me with those $64? You don’t have to spend it all; I saw this cute sandals and they are only $63.99 😀

  6. GO, Marcia, GO! I am right there with you, what I love most is the control! I write, therefore I rule! LOL. Since I was small press anyway, the sales are probably about the same, and I am looking forward to the adventure of building a fan base without someone breathing down my neck every step of the way.

    Best,
    Eboni w/a Alexandra Kane

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