There is something to be said for sticking it through until the end. When it involves writing a novel, it can be a very long tunnel that you have to wade through to reach that end goal, that glorious light of accomplishment. I’ve been writing this book for about a year now and I can happily say that I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel. It wasn’t easy though.
Many people dream of being a writer, a novelist, an author. They are a people of dreams who want to share their fantastic vision with everyone else. They are storytellers who create wondrous new worlds and skalds that believe in retelling history with a bit of flare to remember what has happened. There is power in dreams and the worlds that are created with that power can be awe inspiring. No wonder there are so many people who aspire to be a writer.
Yet, most will never see the light at the end of the tunnel. I’ve seen various statistics on a writer’s success rate, which if you take an average of them, comes out to about 6,400:1 odds that you will get published. Not very good odds is it. Still there is hope.
This average, however, is based on traditional methods of publishing your work. You find a literary agent and then they find you a publishing company to release your work. That is a lot of middlemen between you and your readers. While it may work for some people, for a growing number of new writers (like myself), the ends don’t justify the means any longer.
Self publishing is a fast growing group of writers who have decided to forge their own destiny, to let the public decide what is a good book and what isn’t. I will say that I am firm believer in this path as well. When I first started writing, I thought like many other new authors, write your book, find an agent, and hope to God someone likes it enough to publish your work. But horror story after horror story has convinced me that this is probably not for me. If a book can get 46 rejection letters before being picked up on a whim and then that book goes onto be a New York Times bestseller, there is something wrong with the traditional publishing process. It is old, it is antiquated, and it refuses to modernize itself to the fast changing demographic of its readers. I say to hell with that. And don’t even get me started on a publisher making changes to my story because they think they know better.
Now some will say that by more authors going the self publishing route (whether it be print on demand or e-books or both) will create a glut of bad novels in the marketplace, I would say “Well yes, of course it will.” But I would add that the marketplace also tends to figure itself out in time. Bad novels will do poorly and thus, those writers will either get better or stop writing. Good novels will encourage more good novels.
So let the readers decide what is good and what is not. Don’t let an agent or publisher dictate the worth of your work. I won’t lie, the self publishing route is a lot harder as I’m finding out, but you will have more control over your novel, and a higher percentage of your royalties in your pocket. And who wouldn’t want that?
All that said, I am obviously a firm believer in self publishing and I hope others will also consider it after your hundredth rejection letter. I will be trailblazing self publishing with my first book, Prince of the Dawn (cover at the top of the post created by me) with a hopeful release by the end of the year using CreateSpace. The novel will be available as a paperback and e-book through Amazon.
I can see the light at the end of the tunnel and I can’t wait to see what is on the other side.