It’s 2015 and yet it feels like we’ve stepped back a few years when it comes to authors insecurities.
In 2005 when my first book was published, I remember the condescension from other authors when they realized my book was published by winning a contest with a small publisher. In 2010 I remember the disdain from other writers seeking publication when I decided to try my hand at self publishing. In 2011 I remember both the flack and admiration from authors – some felt I’d just burned the bridges on my career by self publishing Finding Emma and others congratulated me.
I also remember being on of those authors who couldn’t understand why everyone wasn’t self publishing, why writers were still trying to get that publishing contract. I’ll admit it. I was narrow minded back then.
But that was back then. Only 4 years ago and yet, it seems like a lifetime ago in regards to the publishing world, doesn’t it? We now have indie authors who are firmly entrenched in their career. We have traditional authors still believing there is benefit in their chosen path. We have hybrid authors who see the advantages and disadvantages of both ways and are willing to walk the tightrope and make it work for them.
So why can’t we all just get along? It seems redundant that I’m even writing this, doesn’t it? I mean, we are in 2015 after all.
Except, I still see the infighting amongst authors in various loops I’m involved in (whether its via email or FB). I believe the reason we are still seeing this is due to insecurity. No matter where we are in our publishing journey, no matter the changes we see or the strides we take…insecurity is always going to be there.
Whether it’s from a traditionally published author watching their sales dwindle, from indie authors not seeing the success the outliers are, or from midlist hybrid author who believes they should be the one seeing the books hit the lists and their bank accounts grow…either way, it’s there and it’s showing its ugly head once again.
Here’s the thing: my journey is not yours. Your journey is not mine. It’s that simple. We all write differently. We all have different voices. Different styles. Does it really matter if someone decides that being an indie author is the way to go if you are a hybrid author? Does it really matter if someone who used to be a traditional author is now considering dipping their toes into the indie world with their backlist titles?
So let’s stop, shall we? Any well known conference today will have both indie and traditional focus. But we’re now into the era where it doesn’t matter … we all have the same goal, the same problems and are looking for the same answers. Discoverability. Increasing sales. Finding new readers. Growing our social media. New markets.
I’m tired of authors picking sides. I’m tired of being told about a fence between the sides or even an invisible barrier that people are afraid to cross. Get over yourselves please.
THERE IS NO FENCE. And if you want to argue that there is indeed a fence – then the fence is one of your own making. You’re the one who has picked a side. Who cares if one author prefers a certain path … a path different then your own? Who cares if they disagree with your journey? It’s YOUR journey, not theirs! If they want to argue with you, then just walk away. If you feel insulted because of a certain tone that you’ve read into an email or post or something else…then the issue is with you (as much as I hate to say it…sorry, but it’s true).
I have a author friend I’ve known for years who just signed 2 contracts for 6 books. I’m absolutely thrilled for her – because this is her path and it’s been her goal, her dream. We may have different views when it comes to self-publishing, but who cares. I have another friend who is seeing a lot of success in her indie journey and I’m thrilled for her as well…because it’s her path! Two different writers, two different paths than my own…why can’t we all just be happy for one another? Listen to each other when we are faced with issues. Celebrate when we see success, commiserate when something fails…
Why can’t we just stop the fighting amongst ourselves? How about, instead of focusing on ourselves and our own journey, we celebrate someone else? Do you know of an author who is walking a different path than you? Tell us about them!