Indie writers. Let's just take one moment to breathe and reflect. Do it. Think about you. Understand why you matter, why you rock. Yes, you did write that book, or perhaps you're just starting it. You feel so proud because whatever voices that are in your head finally got their say. And you should feel proud. It's a dangerous world I tell ya', the one in our heads that make it on paper. And we feel even prouder when others take hours and days to give your world a chance. But there's just one thing that people may not understand: the actual limits you pushed yourself to get this work packaged right and to your fans. Yes, you have fans. You should be smiling from shoulder to shoulder. Yeah, let's jettison "ear to ear" since that smile sounds too small for this moment.
But listen, you have to be a business woman/man in order to make these books fly. You have to find your inner business and tech child and gear up on your skills. This is the life of an Indie writer. We don't get the support as traditional authors. The publishing houses will take care of a lot of aspects. However, there are things we do have in common with them, like self-promoting, but I'm not focusing on traditionally-published authors right now (no shade). I can just tell you what we Indie authors have to be ready to do if we choose not to outsource. We have to: download spreadsheets to track sales, endeavor to take on and create book teasers and trailers, create a marketing plan, purchase and design a website, hire editors and proofreaders, purchase ISBNs, copyright, develop email lists, perhaps find models, download digital calendars, upload books, order books, order supplies, book events and tours, hire a book designer and keep up with social media. What am I missing here?
I see how my education in business has come in handy. I felt some kind of way when I decided to give up working in a traditional workforce, for fear that I had wasted my money on a masters that I would actually never use. I had a hunch that one day I would, but now I really see it. I thank God for the countless hours spent on writing countless school pages for papers and for really working well under pressure with time running out. When you're an author with looming deadlines, you never feel like there's enough time. In fact, there are moments when I feel blue as I place my head against my pillow at night. There are days when I allow myself to slack. There are days when I study other authors. Because you have to! Our best teachers are the people in the same field.
I like to take different routes to my goals, because that's business and that's just who I am. Thank God! The girl who always liked to go her own way held onto that value with age. Whatever happens, and I only expect the best as we all should in our careers, I at least know that I grew as a self-published author, and that I was able to toss fear to the side and just get down to work as I take full responsibility for my failure and success.
Just know, that as an Indie author, you should feel proud that you roll your sleeves up and make things happen to ensure your future. So when people ask what it is that you do, you may have to tell them that you're a business author, because unfortunately, no one knows that you donned a fast pair of running shoes, swerved through traffic on foot, ran to the mountain, hauled to the top, came back down and jumped over puddles, slapped a camel's butt, got drenched in the rain, stepped on some worms, got swallowed by the snow but somehow, you brought that book back polished and ready. Because you would do all of this for your readers, right? Okay, so quickly, clap for yourself. Now, get back to work. They're waiting.