Anne Rice recently posted this on her face book page
I’ve often said there are no rules for writers. Let me share the WORST AND MOST HARMFUL ADVICE I was ever given by others. 1) Write what you know. 2)You’ll have to polish every sentence you write three or four times. 3)Genius is one tenth talent and nine tenths hard work and 4) You’re not a real writer if you don’t write every day. — ALL OF THAT WAS HARMFUL TO ME. ALL OF IT. IT HURT AND IT SET ME BACK. —– So I say again, there are no rules. It’s amazing how willing people are to tell you that you aren’t a real writer unless you conform to their cliches and their rules. My advice? Reject rules and critics out of hand. Define yourself. Do it your way. Make yourself the writer of your dreams. Protect your voice, your vision, your characters, your story, your imagination, your dreams.
Which I thought was fantastic. I often have people tell me they want to have a book published and where should they start. I’ll admit while I don’t mind being asked it does frustrate me when people see me as a way of cutting corners. Getting my first book published didn’t happen over night.
I sent off other stories to publishers and got rejection letters. I did the hard yards going through multiple submission guidelines and waited and waited. Only to finally receive those wonderful rejections letter. Yes I still have them in a folder as a reminder that you can get past these hurdles. I had no idea about self publishing and no clue about what to do. I didn’t give up though. I found online Strategic Book Group. Now I know people have had bad experiences with groups like this. However I am only talking from my experience. I have now had three books published with them. Overall I am happy. I have learnt along the way. I now use my own editor instead of theirs. I have had to learn to illustrate my own books because I can’t afford an illustrator. I’m pretty happy with how that book turned out anyway:
The actual publishing process was great. I worked over emails with some pretty wonderful people and I am very proud of my three books:
So why wouldn’t I use them again??? Well I may in the future. The biggest issue is shipping. Yes they now publish on demand in Sydney so this has reduced the cost of ordering books, but I still need to order big numbers to get a decent price. Of course I don’t get all the money, they get some of the royalties. That’s fine just means buying books is more difficult, which makes selling more difficult. My books are however available on Amazon, at book depository and other online sources. They also give me lots of marketing options – but I have to pay for these, just as I would if I was self publishing.
All of that is fine, but I guess now that I am more comfortable with the fact that I am an author I am starting to think I should do it myself. More about self publishing later. So to sum up using Strategic or a similar company:
1. They do the book set up
2. They do the web page set up (I pay a bit for this)
3. They put out to online places like Amazon
4. They handle all print set ups – I approve proofs of course
5. The put the front and back cover together – will write blurbs and press releases – I approve of course
1. Sharing royalties
2. Working to their time frame
3. Number of copies I have to order to get discount prices
4. Paying for marketing – if I am going to do this then I would rather get all the rewards
So you see there are things that are great and things that will take me more time if I do it myself, but the benefits may be greater. Lots to think about here! Have I missed anything? Any one want to share their experiences??? Please do, would love to compare notes – have fun!