It seems the romance industry is still going strong during this economy, yet publishers are reorganizing, downsizing, dropping authors and becoming pickier than ever. And they're taking their sweet little time about it. Somehow, whether you're agented or not, the wait time is long and drawn out--often becoming a real downer for authors who are anxious to know their fate. The most interesting thing that's come out of all this is that authors who used to snub ePublishing are now seeking them out. Authors are finally getting an education on the world of ePublishing...It's about darn time!

Okay, I know that when it comes to advances, authors can see those dollar signs in their mind, but they may be disappointed because there's always a catch. Depending on the publisher, authors can get as little as $500 or anywhere in the six-figures...before you think you can quit your day job, do your homework. Although advances are great in the print world, ePublishing offers almost an instant income without having to pay back the advance before royalties kick in. There are plenty of authors who offer great insight into the publishing industry, but the most impressive is possibly Lynn Viehl who provides actual breakdowns, royalty statements, and details of the reality of being a NY Times Bestseller.

Her post really got me thinking...

Everyone chooses the path they want to go to reach publication, including me. There's really no wrong way. However, I chose ePublishing to start my writing journey and I've never regretted it one bit. In fact, I love all my publishers and I love how personable they are and I love their eagerness, their willingness to help their authors. Some ePubs may be more professional than others (like with any business) but while I'm working toward a NY contract, I'm already getting exposure and practice. I'm learning about promoting myself, connecting with my readers and building a backlist. This is the time to write the things that I've always wanted to write. I can push the envelope and I know my publishers are more than willing to take chances. Because of the low overhead, they can do just that. In my eyes, ePublishing is still a win-win.

By no means am I not working on book proposals to get my foot in the door with NY. Why else would I have gotten an agent? My dream doesn't force me to choose the two, in fact, I'm able to balance the benefits of both worlds. I know there are thousands of other authors who also dream of NY sales but this is a marathon, not a sprint. It's about persistence and forging ahead even when the going gets tough. It's about pushing yourself past your limits and never looking back. It's about believing in yourself no matter the odds. It's also about aligning yourself with the right people who will ride that wave with you during the ups and downs. It's also a good thing to have author friends, most importantly, non-author friends because you'll need them both to provide the normalcy to keep you sane.

Now for the reality check portion: New York isn't what it's cracked up to be...there are more pressures, tighter deadlines, more competition, more reasons to cry. I hear it quite frequently from my fellow NY author friends and, to be honest, I'm simply happy with my approach to this industry. I used to get that twinge of envy to hear about their NY sales but over time, I've found that comfort zone in which I'm almost glad I haven't gotten contracts in my hand. Actually, I'm taking my time and I'm content with honing my craft, acquiring more experience, and preparing myself for when "it" happens. By then I should be taking every conceivable issue in stride. For now, I'll happily listen to the nuggets of wisdom and keep the secrets in my back pocket as reference. I also plan on writing for myself. I plan on being persistent because I want to secure a place on the bookshelves for years to come, not just for the time being...


P.S. One Monday each month (if I remember) on my personal blog, I participate in Excerpt Monday where I post a snippet from a current or upcoming release. I may even post an scene from a work in progress...if I'm really brave, I may even post a piece from my proposal that I'll be sending my agent. It's a lot of fun and will give readers a taste of my writing style.

Comments (3)

On November 9, 2009 at 12:18 PM , Anonymous said...

Interesting post, Jax :)
I'm glad you're able to take your time and hone your craft :) I hope one day to see your published with a NY publisher :)

On November 9, 2009 at 12:49 PM , Anonymous said...

E-publishing seems to be a viable choice for those who write strictly romance. But if it's outside of that romance box, unfortunately, you really don't have that option. Too bad, too, because it would be nice to have more places for your work to go, to see your work published, and to see it published sooner, The wait times are killer! :)

On November 9, 2009 at 7:52 PM , Jax Cassidy said...

Thanks Ali & Kathy for commenting. I'm just excited to see my work circulating and that others enjoy reading them.

Kathy, I'm sure there are ePublishers out there that embraces work outside of the romance realm. It's just researching and finding the right one. I'm not sure what genre you write but I'm almost certain there is options for you :)