jonathancg.net and is posted here with permission.
Writing is a game of long odds made shorter through patience, effort, and hard work. But even the most determined author can find themselves bruised by publishing’s ups and downs. Both of these statements sound like things you’ve heard, because both of these statements are mantras among writers. We carry with us a codex of persistence in the first case, and a salve of determination for our wounds in the second.
This business can take you, and all the effort you’ve ever spent honing your prose, and reading and submitting and querying, and wrap it up and toss it away. So you take the good news where you can get it, and you learn to treasure great news like Roc’s teeth.
Independent Publishing, in this new environment, with these new capabilities, is providing fantastic news to authors. It is the best thing that has ever happened to my writing career, and I can absolutely attest to the most valuable thing it brings to the table: Hope.
So excuse the redundancy, because having seen about three dozen articles that sound just how I’m about to, I am nonetheless going to add my voice to a chorus claiming: times have changed, for the better.
Placed in a subordinate position among all the talk of sales figures, which are astonishing for some and depressing for others, is the fact that a paradigm shift has occurred in publishing. And for someone that slogged through the sub/reject/accept model for so many years, the ability to allow the reader to stamp “accepted” on what I write is the perfect antidote to the oft-lonely–and at times frustrating–act of putting words to a page.
It is a thrill, in these first few months, to see a sale, much less multiple sales. That sales are picking up already provides long-sought validation of my skills as an author. It has given that great incorporeal phantasm that all writers chase–hope–a chance to spread.
I am so glad I did this. Summed up, that’s everything this post needs to say. After years adrift in the traditional-method desert, I’m picking up momentum, finally, and interacting directly with readers. Things are looking up.
I honestly don’t understand why anyone would be sitting on the sidelines now. If you believe in the quality of your work, and are willing to take the time to produce a polished product, then you can now harness a new distribution model that leverages the viral-spawning capability of YouTube, coupled with the on-demand capability of the iPod. Placing your work on the major ebook or paperback-producing vendor sites isn’t giving up on your writing, it’s making it visible and available right now, and tapping into the awesome power of these next-generation algorithmic suggestion systems.
Does that sound exciting? It should. And while I don’t fault you if you want to go the traditional route, if you can sense you’ve reached the point where the old approach isn’t working, then try something new.
Try a little hope.