Now to become a traditionally published author usually means the following steps:
- Writing a great novel (don't forget this part, it's kind of important, although given some of the dross that appears in print, not always ;))
- Send the novel to agents with brilliant covering letters etc until one bites and wants to help you publish it.
- Have the agent submit it to one of the publishing houses.
This is hard and soul destroying, because there is much rejection involved. There are many more authors than agents and if you don't catch them at the right time, in the right mood and grab them with your perfectly crafted first paragraph, you'll have many annoying little rejection notes (if they bother to reply at all).
Am I bitter, no, just realistic. The signal to noise ratio has to be huge and agents can only do their best. I tried this route for six months until I went the other way and every now and then I try it again. Every writer dreams of being the next J.K. Rowling ;).
Now this is a route anyone can take without asking for permission from middle people, but please don't think it's easy. Well it is easy in one way, but not if you actually want to produce a fantastic product and have some success (still trying over here).
There are two main ways to go this route:
- Submit your manuscript to an Indie publisher and hope they love it.
- Self-publish, either with Print On Demand or eBooks.
Whichever way you go, you are going to need to be very familiar with social media and self-marketing if you want lots and lots of people to love your book. Indie publishers do not have the million pound budgets to spend on marketing like the big six and if you self-publish then the marketing will be totally down to you. Personally I have one of all of these:
- Facebook (including pages)
- Google+ (including pages)
- Blog (well actually I have three of these)
It's harder than the writing. Make friends and network because there are loads of us out here :).
Other things you have to be wary of:
- Is your Indie Publisher reputable, make sure they are not vanity publishers and that you will see your royalties.
- Has your book been edited well?
- Does your book have a decent cover - I've seen some terrible ones from individual authors and indie publishers and also some absolutely amazing ones from both as well.
The list goes on.
Publishing your book and seeing it in print or on an eBook site is an amazing feeling, and seeing that people like your writing is wonderful, but boy can it be hard sometimes. It takes time and work and occasionally a good cry, yet I think it is worth every moment. In the words of Galaxy Quest - Never give up, never surrender! :)
If you would like to see what all of my posts will be about in advance, click here to see my theme post.
My twin and I are also doing the A to Z Challenge over at our fantasy erotica blog: http://fantasyboysxxx.blogspot.co.uk/