Monday, March 18, 2013

Firing Up the Indie Passion

Words. They're so important. They tell you what to do, how to do it, explain feelings, sights, and sounds. Words can be used in many different ways, in so many combinations it's unfathomable to the human mind. Life without words would... (See? That sentence would be so much better with a word at the end!)

We writers depend on words. We whip them around, smack 'em down, misuse them, and attempt to perfect them all the time. Words come and go and get deleted and revised continually throughout our careers. We celebrate them when they seem perfect (It's gold, I tell ya!"), claim our genius; then months later, go back and delete everything because it was absolutely horrible wasn't nearly as good as we thought it was. But do we stop? No. There's a desperation embedded into us that compels us to share our words with as many people as we can.

Which brings me to my point: Writing. Rejections. Moving on. Writing more. Rejections. Forms. And so on and so forth. This is what keeps our words from moving on and getting into the reader's hands. And, at the end of the day, that's ultimately what matters, right? Getting our words, our stories, our love of our characters and their predicaments and sadness and celebrations in front of the eyes of the world.

In reality, the writing + editing + queries = big publishing deal!!!!!!!  formula isn't so simple; nor is it always an option. A lot more steps are involved in the actual process: work and writing and research and more writing and revisions and edition and so on and so forth and... like I said...  after all of that... there's the very real possibility of rejections. Forms. Submissions out for months upon months resulting in... dead ends. 

Everyone has a limit as to when they decide they're done with that process. Some quit at 100 rejections; others at 200; some use the ol' I will keep sending queries until the only way they can get me to stop is to ask for a submission theory. (Side note: some never go that route at all and choose to go indie from the very beginning.) I'm not going to tell you my personal story today because I think this photo explains it better:

 photo 55d6c91e-8cde-4b6d-9073-986ff8a02700_zps718f7587.jpg

These are my agent/publisher stalker query folders from my first and second MSs. (There's a Coke can to the right of the stack to show you how tall it is--this isn't counting the files I saved online.) Pity Isn't An Option is actually the third MS I completed. The first two didn't go anywhere. I was devastated at first. You see, there's this stigma floating around that writers tend to latch onto. It says, "You don't matter unless a small group of people really high up there in publishing-land decide that you do". 

I'm going to let you in on a secret: That simply is not true.

Indie Ignites is here to shed light on this untrue rumor. We are here to inspire writers to be writers, and get their words into the reader's hands. We're also here to lift those of you stuck in the going nowhere process out of your ruts, dust you off, and send you on to the next part of your process. To keep that passion for writing ignited, to assure you it is okay to take the "indie" step.

We encourage you to submit to a smaller press. We accept you whether you have an agent or not. We support your choice to self-publish your book. We want to fire up that passion for indies everywhere and, hopefully, make that passion spread like... wildfire.

To those of you who are frustrated, who feel less like people and more like nobodys in your writerly process, or feel all alone, or aren't sure where to go, or still feel that pang of unworthiness when you tell someone you're indie published, we're here to tell you we've all been there--and you don't have to feel that way any longer. 

Hence the author interviews. The book reviews. Stories about our own personal journeys. We are here to bring indies together and spread the word that being indie doesn't make you "not as good", it only makes your journey a little different.

So, wherever you are in your journey, take that next step. Get beta readers, get to editing. Listen to your heart and submit to the places you feel you should; research publishers of all sizes (take your time) and let the pros and cons speak for themselves. They're your words, and the steps you take to get them to readers is your decision.

Know that we get where you've been, and are okay with where you are going. And, most importantly, no matter what you choose to do in the end, we're here to support you.


Pity Isn't an OptionJessica resides with her husband of over fifteen years, three awesome daughters, and a plethora of pets in Central California, where fog, frost, triple-digit heat and various items of produce arrive bountifully, depending on the season. She loves owls, drinks coffee like a champ, and reads and writes (mostly) YA fiction. Pity Isn't An Option is her debut novel. 

Jessica would love to connect with you on her blog, Twitter, Facebook or Goodreads. You can also find her on Smashwords and Amazon.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the work you're doing and the hand holding. We all need a community as much as we need individual voices.