What's it like being a Self-published author?
Well, for the most part, it’s great – hard work – but great. You have total control over your work and your book covers. I know what it’s like not to have that freedom when I foolishly signed a contract with a trad publisher, who shall remain unnamed, and had Book I of The Silver Flute Trilogy published by them.
At first, I did the whole hysterical writer bit, running around, shouting, “Oh my God! Oh my God! OH MY GOD – I’M GETTING PUBLISHED!” The hysteria only got worse when my book appeared on Amazon, both as an eBook and a hardback. This all happened very quickly, which in itself should’ve raised alarm bells. The editing, such as it was, was slipshod. The cover was not that fantastic, although I thought it was at the time; and like the bloody idiot I was, I signed the contract without a thought in my head – boy, did that turn out to be a mistake! Warning to any would-be-writers out there, always get legal advice before you sign a contract, or you may live to regret it.
Now don’t get me wrong, the publisher was genuine enough, they weren’t trying to scam anyone and didn’t ask for any money, but they were amateurs, as was I. There was no help or advice with advertising. Promises were made and not kept and altogether it was a truly horrendous time in my writing life. I took advice on the matter of the contract, belatedly, from the Authors Society, but there was no way out of the bind I’d got myself into, except to buy back the rights at an amount that was way beyond my purse. Now, like all writers, my books were my babies and I wanted them back! That’s when my luck changed. The publisher must’ve decided that they’d had enough of all the griping and moaning from their small group of writers and threw in the towel. They offered the copyrights back to everyone for free and I leapt at it!
But what to do now? Self-publishing was unknown territory for me, so I decided to take an excellent online course and embarked on my first tentative step into the world of indie authors; I’m so glad I did. I’ve taken several courses since then: how to get reviews (phew! It’s blood sweat and tears persuading people to review your books!) How to advertise on Facebook and Amazon, etc. And last, but not least, build a website and garner subscribers, all of which have proved extremely useful. And yes, as I said, it’s hard work, but worth it. It’s the only job I’ve ever had that I liked – nay – loved!
So, if you like urban fantasy and would like to read Book I of The Silver Flute Trilogy, you can download a free copy from Booksprout in return for a short review. (Not that I’m dropping hints – wink, wink). Just click the image below.