I am now officially committed to getting my book completed and self published. My target date is January 2014.
I've completed the first draft and I am about two thirds through the my initial round of editing. I currently have two friends signed up as beta readers and have just forwarded them the first half of the book. It's absolutely terrifying and I'm holding my breath.
I've also just hired a professional editor and have been put on her schedule for September. I hired Erin Roth, who also edited the Beautiful Disaster series. I loved that book and it one was one of the novels that inspired me to write one of my own. Erin is also a member of the Indie Bookshelf, a well known book review user group and blog.
I hired Okay Creations as my book cover designer. Sarah Hansen has designed a ton of indie published books, several which have now been on the NY Times Bestseller list. She's booked until November, but I've now been added to her schedule as well.
I've been doing a lot of research on whether or not to go the traditional publishing route or the indie publishing route. My research has included reading and following indie publishing blogs, book review sites, Goodreads.com, and several other random website referrals from various other sources. Needless to say, there is A LOT of information out there. Initially, it was all very overwhelming, but after several months of following these blogs, doing research and asking a lot of questions, I'm now getting a good picture of the pros/cons of traditional vs. indie publishing.
Traditional publishing requires an author to find a literary agent. This can be a long and cumbersome process. I would have to find the right type of agent first, one who specializes in my genre, write a letter to convince them to consider taking on my book, and then wait for them to find a publishing house to accept it. The publishing house and the agent would then both take their cut, they would own the full rights to the book, and it could take over a year or two before the book would get out there. The odds of landing a publisher through the traditional route is very very low. I just don't think I have the heart or the patience to take this approach. Especially not when the indie publishing industry has completely revolutionized how authors are getting books out to readers.
Indie publishing is an industry that is completely taking off right now. There is a pivotal shift occurring in the book publishing industry. New indie businesses and blogs/review sites are popping up everywhere. Authors are now able to publish their own books easily and quickly. Of course, the downside is that they have to do their own marketing too i.e. book summary blurbs, covers, blog sites, book review, giveaways, pricing models, etc.. etc... etc.... Many popular books out there were independently published and authors said it took 1-2 years before the book took off. But they also got 70% of the profits and they owned all the rights to their own book.
I think the odds of success are rare with both options but I feel that I will have more control over my own destiny with the latter.
Having said all that, please know that I'm not completely off my rocker. Yes, I have grand dreams of becoming a published author and getting some moderate success out of it. However, my success or lack of, is only as good as the book. I have now fully committed myself to finishing this journey. All the wheels have been set in motion.
Here we go...