I’m not sure how to start this post. I just typed out four different openings and deleted all of them. I’ve never been one to sugar-coat things so I’m going to cut right to the chase.
I’m done. Self-publishing has been slowly killing my love of writing. For years I thought it was just writing that was getting to me, but after months of careful examination, I realize that I still love the idea of creating stories. It’s the publishing part of it that is bringing me down.
I know, I know, I just wrote a blog post about why I chose to self-publish and here I am saying I’m done. Well, if I were to be completely honest, I’ve had mixed feelings about being indie since I started back at the end of 2013. There are many small reasons why I’ve been making this decision to break up with self-publishing, but I’m not going to go through and list them all. But I will list a few.
1. I don’t write and edit fast enough for rapid release, which is what it really takes (or so they say) to make a living. And it’s not even that, really. It’s the simple fact that I don’t want to work that way. I love creating nuanced and layered books, and that takes time.
2. I don’t have the money for ads. And I refuse to give anymore money to a certain monster corporation who is now bilking money from authors for a little visibility. The behemoth has turned into a pay-to-play site–you want customers to find your books, buy an ad. No thanks.
3. I want to go back to writing for kids, and self-pubbing books for kids is a next to impossible endeavor. This is the biggest reason I’m quitting. Yep, I’m going to go back to seeking an agent and hoping for a miracle. lol
The dream of being traditionally published by one of the big pub houses (we used to say Big 5, but I’m not sure how many there are anymore) has never gone away. And by doing this, I accept that I may never succeed, but I’m miserable right now. I can’t keep releasing book after book and have them go nowhere. Besides, I had a lot of good agent feedback on the last book I queried. That gives me hope that maybe I’m getting closer.
So, where do I go from here? Well, I have a book of poetry coming out soon (poetry has a long history of self-publishing) and I’m going to rewrite and re-release a novella sometime later this year. After that, I don’t have anything. Instead of writing more books, I’m going to put my effort into marketing the books I already have. It seems silly to me to keep building an inventory when no one knows my store exists. We’ll see how that goes. I’m also back to reading middle-grade fiction to prime the well.
I’m finally okay with this decision. I’ve made it several times ever since 2013 but never stuck to it. Who knows. I may change my mind again, but right now, there are so many other things I would rather be doing…and that right there is when you know it’s time to stop.