New Stories And Uncertainty

I’m currently working on a new novel, or at least, what I hope will become one. I have to be honest though and say that I’m not feeling as confident about this book as my other two. I keep wondering if what I have planned is enough to be made into a successful story. Is the plot good enough? Is the story idea fresh enough? Is it something readers would really want to sink their teeth into? So many questions are swirling around in my mind.

A part of me really likes the story idea and I feel that if I can write it well enough, then it’ll be successful. However, I do have doubts – I’m not above admitting that.

I don’t think I’m ready to give up on the idea quite yet though. In fact, I still like the idea quite a bit. I just need to really start diving into the story, after all I don’t have that much written yet. Also, there’s nothing wrong with me asking those I trust for their opinions, which I plan on doing.

I’m writing this post to tell you that it’s okay not to be 100% confident when writing something new – it doesn’t make you a bad writer or mean that your story isn’t up to snuff. All it means is that you’re human and that writing something good means so much to you, that you want to do a good job. While doubting in your abilities to write something extraordinary is never a good thing, caring that your work will turn out how you want it, is. As writers, we should want our writing to be something we’re proud of.

Remember that you are a talented writer. Look at your previous work and remind yourself that the wonderful words that you see came from your creativity. Trust your instincts and have faith in your abilities. Don’t give up on your story right away if you have some doubts, work with it for a while. If you still don’t like it, then you can work on something else, but don’t let temporary uncertainty make you question your talent as a writer.

Why Self-Publish?

Today I’d like to talk about why I chose to self-publish and the benefits that come along with the process. I touched on this subject briefly in my author interview with Ariel from Writing Radiation, but I thought I’d go into more depth.

I think the number one benefit of self-publishing is that you don’t have to wait an extended period of time to hear back from a publisher. Yes, self-publishing takes time since you have to edit and then make sure that your document is ready for publishing, but unlike regular publishing, you don’t have to wait around for an answer on whether or not your work will get published, only to possibly receive news of rejection. Writing can be a very difficult process and sometimes instead of sending a story in, you feel confident enough in your work to go ahead and get things done yourself in a timely fashion.

In addition to saving time, self-publishing also allows you as the author to feel extra proud of yourself. Think about it. Taking the time to write your own story and then do a lot of the publishing work yourself makes you feel like you’ve worked extra hard to accomplish your goals. I also learned a great deal about publishing through taking on the challenge. For example, I had to learn how to make a table of contents (I had done this before for school, but this was slightly different), make a dedication page, and more!

I have to admit though, that I was hesitant at first to go through with self-publishing. For one thing, I was worried it would be a complicated process and for another, I honestly wasn’t sure if self-publishing ‘counted’ as publishing a book. I know that maybe that sounds horrible, but let’s face it – what author doesn’t want a known publisher to read their book and like it enough to publish it? Isn’t that every writer’s dream?

Here’s what I realized though. For one thing, while slightly complicated, self-publishing (at least the way I did it – through Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing), is not that difficult. It takes patience, sure, but in the end, the process is well worth it. Something else I realized is that, yes, self-publishing ‘counts’ as publishing. After all, a writer’s dream is to get their work out there and to get paid for said work. By self-publishing my book, I’m getting my work out there, people are reading my book, and I’m getting paid! Maybe some famous publisher hasn’t picked up a story of mine yet, but my work is still getting attention and that is every author’s dream!

So now look at me! I’m a published author, I’ve sold copies of my book, I’ve had a review written about it, a friend of mine has interviewed me about my novel, and a paperback version of my book is now available along with an e-book version! I learned valuable lessons by self-publishing and I can easily see myself doing it again in the future. While I still hope to one day be noticed by a professional publisher, self-publishing has been kind to me so far and yes, I highly recommend it!