With some encouragement from family and friends, I’ve decided to look into getting some of my stories published.
In looking back through all I’ve written over the past two years, I’ve found that I’ve built quite an extensive portfolio: Joe the Bug Hunter, Audrey and the Bubblebath Kids, Adventures in Homesteading and Mischief Makers plus all of the kooky poetry and haikus I’ve composed on gardening.
So why not give it a go?
I’m just in the beginning stages of research, but so far I’ve found that there are two main options for publishing a book: self-publishing and traditional publishing.
In researching the traditional method, the common theme is that it takes time and patience…and a thick skin.
First, you have to find an agent, which takes time.
Once that’s done, the agent will want to revise your book before showing editors and publishing houses, which takes more time.
If said agent finds an editor willing to buy your book, you’re in for another round (or several rounds) of revisions before the book even goes into production. And then you may not even recognize the story as the one you initially wrote. The whole process could be a horrible experience…or a wonderful one. Which takes even more time.
In all, it could be a year or more before your precious book is published, and then…what if no one buys it? Or worse…it gets a really bad review?
On the flip side, going the traditional route has its benefits.
If the book gets picked up, you’ll have editors, an illustrator, a printer, distributor and promoters, plus a nice up-front payment. It may take a few years, but if the book is a success you’ll start receiving royalties and have only paid with your time and tears.
Then there is the self-publishing route. It’s the same steps as the traditional route, but you have to pay up front for editing, illustrating, producing, promoting, printing and distributing the book.
You, the author, also have more control over the book and content. No one can tell you to cut a scene you feel is integral to the storyline. But, as a stay-at-home mom, novice blogger, budding gardener and beginning writer…do I really have the time, money and energy it takes to self-publish with any success?
I don’t want to dip my toes in the water, I want to jump in with both feet and I’d like a guide (in the form of a nice agent) to help me on my journey.
On the other hand, I don’t want to limit myself to just one storyline, one editor or one publisher “guide”.
I want to keep writing and putting more content out there for feedback.
Then I realized, I don’t want to do traditional publishing or self-publishing…at least not right now.
I’m already putting my content out there. It’s on this blog. I share it on Facebook. And, some of my readers are kind enough to share my blog with others.
I’m getting feedback all the time. The next step is to start networking and sharing with other aspiring authors–gaining insight from their experience, giving and getting feedback in writing forums.
I don’t need to limit myself to one path right now. I’m not a professional author and my stories, while I think are good, are far from polished.
For right now, I’m going to continue writing all of the stories that are racing through my mind. I’m going to be happy that I’ve found the writing bug again…that my creativity and imagination continue to flow.
I’m not going to limit myself and pull my focus away from doing what I enjoy…but I am going to start having the confidence to promote my stories and treat my writing as an art rather than just a hobby.