Friday, July 22, 2011

Why Indie?

This Friday's YA Indie Carnival blog theme . . . why indie?

There are many contributing factors for me, but the largest one was a way to get my work into the public eye to let them decide if there was a place for Nicole Williams in the book world or if I'd be better off keeping my "masterpieces" to myself.

A couple years back when I completed Eternal Eden, I attempted the traditional publishing route by submitting queries. A few agents wanted to see partials and one wanted to see the full, but none offered representation, or much feedback as to why. So I put Eternal Eden up on the virtual shelf, had a baby, became a stay-at-home mom, and got a Kindle for Christmas (forgive my seeming randomness, it'll all make sense soon. I think.). Using naptime as my reading time, I downloaded a novel by an indie author and found it wasn't only good, it was traditional publishing good, so I downloaded another indie, and a few more after that. All were just as solid and captivating as the first, and this got me thinking that this might just be an opportunity I couldn't let go unexplored.

With an exceeding amount of support and assistance from my husband, I pulled EE from the shelf, tuned it up a bit, went through a bottle of Tylenol getting the thing formatted for Kindle, and hit the publish button. I can't remember a time I felt such an extreme mix of exhilaration and body-crippling fear! I waited for reviews to come in, feeling like I'd left my dreams in the hands of my readers. Talk about feeling powerless!

To my overwhelming relief, the first reviews came in strong and glowing, affirming there was an audience for my books out there. Not all my reviews have been glowing, I can assure you. I've even received some one stars (gasp!), but I've been able to accept those with more grace than I originally thought I would. I take the constructive feedback from those reviews (how about . . . hire an editor, dummy?!) and don't get caught up in the non-constructive feedback. My books are not for everyone, I'm well aware of that, but there are enough readers out there to affirm I need to keep marching down this yellow brick indie road.

For me, each day gets better and better. I was just telling my husband yesterday how I'm waiting to wake up or for the bottom to drop out, it's been that wonderful of an experience for me. The publishing industry is changing, it feels a bit like the Wild West, and I'm making sure to stake my claim in this new land.

Be sure to check out what the rest of the indie sisterhood has to say on going indie:

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