Are You Tough Enough To Be Indie?

In days not so long past – well only a few years ago – being an indie author meant getting your books printed and shipped and then flogging them as best you could at local bookstores, coffee shops, tearooms, markets, writer groups or evenTupperware parties. It was hard going, but you got out to meet people and stayed fit carrying all those tomes with you wherever you went. And you sold some books.

Then the world turned upside down when the ebook and in particular the Kindle changed what it meant to be an indie author. I’ll skip all the work that has to be done in between the actual writing and publishing now as we all know about the hours, days, weeks and months of grunt work that must be done by an indie to get a book ready for ebook publication.

What has changed the most is how an indie author sells books. As an ebook is really just a little electronic file that can be transmitted in an instant to anywhere in the world, (or perhaps even as far as Gloth) it necessitates being online, engaged and becoming a rabid internet, blog, website, and social media user. You really need to ‘sell your soul for rock ‘n roll’ as the saying goes, because this is the new book marketing world – and it’s 24/7!

If you’re not committed, you’ll fail. Simple as that. You have to believe in yourself, take a lot of knocks and keep climbing up an ever-changing learning curve. If you’re satisfied with publishing a book on Amazon Kindle and selling a few books to family and friends, that’s fine, and a great new opportunity for many writers.

But if you want to succeed as an indie and be taken seriously and read by enough readers to put food on your table, you’ll need to be patient, tough, determined and have a bit of marketing mongrel about yourself. Are you ready?

Are You Tough Enough To Be Indie?

20 thoughts on “Are You Tough Enough To Be Indie?

  • 05/06/2011 at 9:00 am
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    Good luck Chazz. The only problem with being an Indie is that you find you have very little time to actually write. The perversity of it!

    • 27/08/2011 at 1:26 am
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      Absolutely! Between tweets, blogs, facebooking, blog hopping, etc, who has time to write? Ack!

  • 05/06/2011 at 9:02 am
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    I know the story well Wendy. Yes, it's much better now, but it takes a lot of energy to keep at at it day in and day out. But we're tough huh? :)

  • 05/06/2011 at 10:30 am
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    Twenty years to become an overnight success? It's the Rip Van Winkle rule of publishing. I've only got two years to go, hooray!

    But it's fun along the way.

    Love marketing mongrel, how about a hashtag for that?

  • 05/06/2011 at 11:39 am
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    You are amazing Derek… I absolutely love your blog!!

  • 05/06/2011 at 12:59 pm
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    Well ~ rilzy ~ , what can I say? Thank you indeed, but it seems awfully inadequate after your fantastic comment. :))) The best I can do is:

    THANK YOU !!! THANK YOU !!! THANK YOU !!!

  • 05/06/2011 at 5:45 pm
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    Good blog. I don't know if people realize the work involved. My friends and I started a blog, hoping to provide readers with great reads they might've otherwise not picked up. We're reviewing lots of good stuff, some not so good, but hopefully the good will get to readers looking to try someone new. Best of luck to everyone. http://readyaimhookme.blogspot.com

  • 05/06/2011 at 9:03 pm
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    Couldn't agree more. Self-publishing my book has been a second job. I almost gave up just trying to format the stinkin' thing for print, ebook and Kindle. I know more about Word than I ever wanted to.

    I think marketing is not only time-consuming, but can be an uphill battle as we're combating the stigma of self-publishing. I wrote a guest post for BooksByWomen.org about how I respond when someone asks who published my book.

    http://booksbywomen.org/published-does-it-matter-how/

    Cyndi Tefft

  • 06/06/2011 at 9:28 pm
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    Thanks for all your great comments. Proof there are many self confident believers out there! Go for it. :))

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