If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you’ll know that I’ve been leaning towards indie publishing my novel, The Big Smoke, for more than a year now. Well, I’ve finally decided for sure – I’m going to do it. I’m flying solo.
If you’re new here, you’ll probably assume that I’ve already tried my hand at getting a traditional publishing contract and clocked up countless rejections. But that would be incorrect. I’ve decided to skip that part.
‘Are you crazy?’ I can hear you saying. ‘Don’t you at least want to give traditional publishing a shot before you make the decision to indie publish?’
Short answer: no.
Why? Because, as we all know, it’s incredibly difficult to get an agent and publisher, even when your manuscript fits the narrow window of what traditional publishers are looking for. And The Big Smoke doesn’t fit that window. Based on my research, traditional publishers are unwilling to take a risk on young adult fiction by new authors that’s over 90,000 words. The Big Smoke is about 140,000 words.
That doesn’t make it unsellable. It just means that the risk for a traditional publisher to take it on is higher, because they would earn less profit for each book sold. Why? Because big books cost more to print, but you can’t necessarily charge much more for a big book than a thinner book. There’s only so much readers are willing to pay for a book, after all.
I get that. And I don’t blame traditional publishers for avoiding projects that have more risks, especially not in today’s market. But that doesn’t mean The Big Smoke isn’t worth reading, or that it won’t find an audience out there. I believe it’s good enough to publish, and so do my beta readers. So that’s what I’m going to do.
There are a few more reasons why going indie appeals to me:
- The Big Smoke will be available to readers a lot faster than if I waited for a publishing offer (which in all likelihood would never come).
- I’m a bit of a control freak, so the idea of having ultimate control over the whole project really appeals to me
- I probably won’t sell nearly as many copies, but I’ll get much higher royalties for each book sold.
Where to from here?
Once I get feedback from my second group of beta readers (in early July, hopefully), I’ll make any required changes then send the manuscript off to be professionally edited and proof read (if you know any high-quality Australian freelance fiction editors, let me know!).
While that’s happening, I’ll also be commissioning a professional cover designer to produce an awesome cover that will work for both hard copy and e-books. Once all of that is done, I’ll release the book through Amazon, Smashwords and Createspace Print on Demand.
And then the blog tour and celebrations will begin!
As you can probably tell, I’m feeling pretty excited about all of this. I’m not expecting to be the next Amanda Hocking by any stretch of the imagination, but just the thought of my book being available for readers makes me feel all warm inside. And if I can make back the money I spend on publishing and a bit more, that’d be awesome too.
Stay tuned, because I’ll be keeping you up to date every step of the way!
What do you think about my decision? Feel free to be honest! What are you plans for your work-in-progress? Are you hoping to get a traditional publishing contract or does going indie appeal to you too?