No one was more surprised than I when I became an indie author. I had spent the majority of my career toiling away in Human Resources, where the subject of my written musings ranged from extremely dry policy updates to carefully constructed disciplinary actions. (You haven’t lived until you’ve had to compose a written warning regarding the improper use of the word, “ghetto.”) I honestly thought of writing as the most tedious of tasks and when I made the decision to stay at home with my two young sons, I was certain my laptop usage would be restricted to online shopping, casual social media interactions and emailing. I couldn’t have been more wrong.
A year later, I found myself itching for a project. Or maybe I just needed something to distract me from the fact that I no longer slept. (My little one didn’t believe in sleep until he was two years old. Good times!) One night, I dreamed about writing a book. What?! I repeatedly dismissed the idea until I realized I had a solid outline in my head and it didn’t suck. How could it? I planned to write the story of how I met and married my gorgeous, charming and intelligent French husband in six short months. We had an adorable meet cute, a whirlwind romance and let’s face it, I made a highly entertaining heroine.
My initial draft took three months. I couldn’t believe it! It almost seemed too easy. (It turns out it was. My first book could definitely use some work.) I gave the draft to a few trusted advisors, incorporated their edits and had the book ready to go a couple of months later. As my entire operation was home grown, my sister was enlisted to design my cover. I had always been jealous of her artistic talent and I must say I was pretty damn impressed with the results. My adoring husband took pity on his technically challenged wife by formatting and uploading the book and voilà! I was on my way.
I had planned from the beginning to publish the book myself—if I were able to finish it. I honestly just wanted to see if I could. Writing a book is a BIG deal. Initially, I thought if I did manage to complete this monumental task, I would put it out there and move on to something else, but the joke was on me. One book wasn’t enough to tell our uber romantic tale. (It really is swoonworthy. Not that I’m biased or anything…) So, after I finished the first book, I wrote *gasp* two more in the series AND a standalone novel. I still wonder how all this happened! It has been one crazy, awesome literary adventure.
There is no way I could handle being an indie without the amazing community of authors I’ve met along the way. It truly takes a village, my friends. I hadn’t the slightest idea of how to market myself, how to find readers or how to properly utilize the social media channels available to me. (I’m completely serious when I tell you Twitter used to scare the crap out of me.) Now I have the most amazing knowledge base, sounding board and support system. Not only are these people brilliant, they’re compassionate, endearing and unbelievably funny! Some are traditionally published, some are indie, but they’re all incredible and the world is a better place with them in it.
It’s time to get to the good stuff! I’ve been lucky enough to received advance copies from a few extremely talented indie authors and I’m happy to call attention to their books for your immediate perusal. First and foremost, Tracie Banister, y’all! Her books are full of charm, wit and steamy romance. I’ve read every single one she’s written. (And there’s another one coming in October. Score!) Next up, the very captivating Geralyn Corcillo. Her characters remind me of the author herself—heartwarming, hilarious and absolutely unforgettable. I’ve also read her entire list; she can’t write fast enough as far as I’m concerned! Last, but certainly not least, the lovely woman behind this blog post, Kathryn R. Biel. I’ve found her work to be so dramatic and moving; she will both make you laugh and take your breath away, so be prepared. And that’s not all! Ms. Biel has set up a sweet Pinterest board with loads of book recommendations. Be sure to check it out!
(Available October 19th)
Life as an indie author is better than I ever could have imagined. I still haven’t cracked the code to this whole marketing conundrum, but in the meantime, the writing part sure is fun!