Saturday, January 22, 2011

Back on the Fence

Most of my writing friends know what I have said. I have absolutely decided to self-publish...until today. I went into my Barnes & Noble account, making sure everything looked right with my novella on their new system, and couldn't help but notice that there was only about one or two unfamiliar names in the top 100. That is, people who have most likely independently published. One I know for sure is an indie publisher. So that leaves me wondering where I can make the most money, which is the debate for me. I have a kid; I live in an apartment. My "day job" (really more of a night job) is a stay-at-home-mom and finances and some personal circumstances currently necessitate this. My question: which mode of publication is going to allow my family to move into a house already?

The number of indies doing well to this extreme on Amazon is much larger, thus further confusing the issue.

According to Joe Konrath's blog, there is more money to be made going indie in the long-run, whether you're new at the game or "old." But here's the other problem: I'm not exactly rolling in dough. So for me to hire someone to create cover art (or buy good software), format my book, etc....Joe said he spent something like $1800 on all this when he and his gang published Draculas. I'm a pretty savvy chickadee so I know some ways to get that price down lower. But still, it's not the kind of $$$ for a person like me to sneeze at.

For right now, I'm just glad that my novel isn't finished. Maybe I'll just put "self-publish" and "traditionally publish" into a hat and see which one wins.

And if you're a writer who doesn't know who Joe Konrath is, I have one of two things to say to you: 1.Shame on you, or 2.Welcome to writing!


  1. I'm thinking that your timing will work out perfectly. When you type THE END on Living With Murder, it will be clear which route is best. You're doing all the right things now by having This Dark Magic on Kindle. I just started reading Constant Carl, and am amazed how much I'm loving it. Your writing makes me start laughing immediately (even if there's a funeral involved). Plus, I just love Grandma. She's a hoot. I'm thinking you could put this one under your name, too, and just clarify that it's a romance if you wanted. I've been scouring Ebay. I went ahead and bought something called Ebook Cover Creator Photoshop software for just $3.49 including shipping. If it turns out well, the dude sells a bunch of those starting at 99 cents and I'll recommend it. Also, on Ebay I'm looking at the older cheaper versions of the basic Photoshop, and at the international versions of Photoshop CS5 Extended Full Versions. You are one of my favorite authors ever, and your writing will draw readers which ever way you land. :)

  2. Let me know how it turns out! That is cheap, cheap, cheap! Right now, the cheapest thing I'm seeing for a good cover is about $200.

    I was more concerned about Contant Carl being too different, stylistically speaking.

    Thanks for the sweet words, Brenda, and I think you're right about knowing which way to go when the time comes.

  3. Hey! Cover art is a pain in the butt, there are some pretty good people at Deviantart who do book covers on occasion, and really good photomanipulations too. As for software, you might try GIMP, it's the free linux version of photoshop (less tools and such, but it works!). There's also a lot of freeware out there that work just as well sometimes. Deviantart also has a pretty decent, built in, drawing program with layering and patterns you can buy for a cheaper (the basic program, though, is free).

    If you're not as wary about viruses and other implications, there's also torrenting the mainstream programs.

    And Mr. Konrath is a big proponent of self-publishing, true, though he's also had a lot of success with a backlist from what I've read. Traditional and Self have their strengths, but either way you go, there's still plenty of luck involved with the process. Maybe when your novel is done you could try querying out to agents and just see? Getting more money would probably be possible with traditional publishing, but it's harder to break into that.

    And I have now ranted. I apologize ahead of time. :) I hope everything works out regardless. Either way, you've got some serious talent!