Surfing the waves of indie publishing and trying not to care if I fall off

Until recently, the narrative I had constructed about my life was that I was a bit of an under-achiever, generally risk-adverse, and very comfortable in a supporting role in life’s events. I learned early on to work hard enough to fulfill my responsibilities (school, work, family) because then I could do what I longed to do most, which for me has primarily meant reading. I followed that pattern throughout my academic and professional career. My mother (a trained social worker) was successful in getting me to spend time away from my books by pushing me to develop friendships, join in Read more…

Self-Publishing Success? Yes! Self-Publishing Exception: No!: Why the charges of exceptionalism are just part of the old debate

In April 2009, after my historical mystery, the Maids of Misfortune, had been out for 4 months and I had sold 158 books, I asked on this blog whether I could call myself a “real author.” This was in response to the frequently stated opinion of those against self-publishing that people who took that route were only going to sell to family and friends and weren’t real authors. In fact, a year ago almost all of the blog posts on self-publishing revolved around the debate (and they were definitely heated debates) about whether or not self-publishing was good (because the Read more…

The First Year as an Indie Author in Review: Sweet Success

A year ago, during the last week in November and the first weeks of December, I self-published my first book, Maids of Misfortune: A Victorian San Francisco Mystery, as an ebook on Smashwords and Kindle, and as a POD book through CreateSpace. I had no history as a published author, no contacts in the publishing world, and no marketing plan. I had a self-created author web-site and blog site, a facebook friends list of about 40, a lovely cover for the book (shout out to my cover designer Michelle Huffaker), and the confidence that I had done everything possible to Read more…