I am an Indie Author. By choice. I started out with a publisher and left. A couple of my first books are still with a boutique press and I keep them there because they are still available in all the places I want them to be. When CreateSpace was bought out, luckily, those books were grandfathered and remain available for independent bookstores.
I thought the others would follow suit, being with the company that bought CreateSpace. They did not. I learned I have entered a whole new ball game. And, yes, I’m slow on the uptake. I work full time because of expenses we need to meet. My husband has had 3 cancers and major heart surgery. He’s going well, by the way. But it is imperative that I have a good, steady income. We can no longer be the adventuresome kids taking risks like we once were.
Yes, I have been approached by a few publishers (yay, that means my stories are good). But, when I considered the ramifications of what was needed, I felt I had to decline. My stories would change to match their market. Each novel would take longer to hit the market. And, I would be under constant deadlines to produce as many books as they wanted within a short time frame. Given our circumstances, I just couldn’t.
So, now I’m finding out the limitations placed on Indie authors. Publishers will limit where you can publish, if you use their “free” ISBN’s. I just purchased a block of ISBN numbers. They aren’t cheap. But, they afford the author a bit of freedom. Still, it’s a mess. The companies are vying, trying to kill off each other. Mergers are going on. Formatting is different for each one. Even the major publishers are having printing issues. I just purchased a book at a store, written by a favorite author, published by a huge press, and found horrible printing issues–pages out of order. So, it’s not just small and Indie that are suffering. But, trying to keep up with everything has become daunting.
Now, I have heard where “people”–not legit authors–are being allowed to publish a few pages as books or blank books and further ruining an Indie author’s options. Authors work hard to bring stories to the public. If it were figured in a per hour wage, we’d make next to nothing. Besides being a good story teller, we need to be a grammatician, editor, graphic artist, formatter, marketer, and public speaker. That doesn’t include the business acumen needed to run a business.
I finished my latest novel late last year. My editor loves it. I finalized the design for the cover. It’s wonderful. Then my husband was diagnosed with cancer again and had to go through radiation treatments. My novel took the back seat. When I got to where I could publish, I found that things had changed. I’ve spent months trying to figure out the best way to get my books to the largest number of readers. I have bought those expensive ISBN’s. I am looking at my options, because, damn it, I refuse to give up. So, for all of you patiently waiting, thank you for that. Thank you for letting me know you care. I haven’t given up.