In the writing world, there are a lot of naysayers. There are rejections from online publications, literary zines, agents, small presses, big presses, contests, fellowships, and grants. There are barriers to entry at every level: reviews, money, readers, time, agents, money, subjective preference, time, and of course, money.
The thing you have control over is you. It may have been a long time through those rejections. However, time is a useful resource. There is a lot you can do with a few months. Extrapolate that out to a few years and you can reinvent yourself!
Was I fumbling or honing?
For about five years I muddled through writing and publishing. I made mistakes – but I’ve learned a LOT. And the beauty of the online world is change works. In fact, change is perfectly acceptable. Because I was flying under the radar, I could change all kinds of things and yield only positive results. There was while where I changed something about my blog every week. Eventually I settled on something, but my regular readers came to my blog ready for a surprise.
I wondered about my ability to write. I questioned my ability to publish. I thought, “Maybe no one wants to read my work.”
More likely, no one knew I was there.
During all that time I thought I was fumbling. I looked at other writers and authors and thought, “They’re so much better! They are so successful! They have so many resources! How did they do it? They’ve only written one book and I have ten!”
Something shifted after my son was born, and again when I decided to write and publish THRIVE (enter to win a free copy by commenting here!). I was more intentional about putting myself out there. I trusted that my work was good. I believed it was worthy of being owned and read. I had a vision of distribution.
I started getting posts published on a variety of sites. I networked with authors. I took classes and read everything I could about book launches.
And then something weird happened.
All those classes, books, and articles started saying things I already knew.
In fact, about 75% – 80% of the indie publishing content I run into online, I already know. I skim or skip to the parts I don’t. I’m at about maybe 60% of speaking content, but I just started devouring that recently.
Through this, I recognized a few things:
I know what the hell I’m talking about.
This discourse is dominated by salesy copy and a lot of men.
It’s time for me to write my version.
This week I started working on my indie writing and publishing bible. It is DEFINITELY getting published because there is a GAPING need for it, and if I’m honest, it’s the book I always wanted to write (because it’s the book I would have loved five years ago).
What will it include? My writing and publishing journey (and places where you can do better faster), along with ways to maintain your creative independence. It’s going to be sort of riot grrrl, brutally honest, and inclusive, because, well, that’s me.
This is for aspiring Furiosas of the publishing world – because I want more of them. I want us to be friends and form a kind of amazing network of amazing indie women.
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