You know, it’s really strange. Knowing what I know, I often ask myself why anybody would want to go with a big publisher when it’s so much easier (and more profitable) to publish yourself as an indie.
An yet…I’m still finding myself being drawn to ‘agents who are accepting’ or reading about those few publishers who will accept manuscripts without an agent and wondering…Should I? Knowing what I know, I ask myself…why bother? Is it to prove to myself that my writing can ‘hang with the big boys’? Is it to satisfy some innate desire to be accepted by the establishment? Is it to finally find that avenue to get my paperbacks into bookstores? I know, I know…there are indies who have supposedly found that secret formula for getting their work carried in trade catalogs, but I haven’t discovered the combination. Is it sacrifice a live chicken while dancing naked under a full moon, or sacrifice your full moon while dancing naked under a chicken? It must be something really odd like that because it’s still elusive.
HOWEVER, knowing what I know…that established writers are stepping away from the Big 5 publishers every day and putting their stuff out there as indies…that many indies are making a comfortable living doing what they do…that some indies not only become best sellers, but some have their work made into films. And yet…that draw is still there. ARE my stories good enough to hang with the big boys? Could I be accepted by the establishment? Could my books end up on the shelves of my local bookstore…along with the works of tens of thousands of other peoples?
The bigger question is, it worth the time spent trying? Is it worth the mental anguish being rejected by faceless agents who know good writing when they see it? Is it worth pinning hopes on possibly hearing back from people who are too busy to tell you to not quit your day job? It’s funny (but true) how many times I’ve heard authors say that it’s harder to find an agent than it is to get picked up by a Big 5 publisher…and yet, you need an agent just to approach most of the large publishers. Catch 22, anyone?
Anyway, I just wanted to air the matter. It’s not like the subject has caused me to lose any sleep at night. I was just sitting here and wondering why the whole idea still seems attractive knowing what I already know. I can’t put my finger on any one reason why… other than maybe bragging rights. Knowing that I was more than ‘just a storyteller’. But, in all honesty, I think I’d rather stay a storyteller. Being an author is too much like work.
August 20, 2015 at 8:38 am
You have the talent. You are doing what you love, and no matter how many books we sell, we always want that number to be more. THAT is what drives us to keep going. Oh, and call me up and I will tell you how to get your toe in the door with Publisher’s Weekly. I just found out myself and will be waiting to see how it plays out.