In March of 2012, I lost my grandfather, I was 36 years old and I was devastated he was my rock, my champion, he was my person!  It was during this time I had an epiphany.  I wanted to do what it took to write and publish a book before it was too late. I began researching how to write query letters, how to find an agent and how to get your manuscript to the Publishing companies. Then it happened….I discovered the Indie Book World and my life changed forever.

One of the first books I read by an Indie Author was Moving Forward by Erika Ashby.  I remember friending her on Facebook shortly after and striking up a conversation on Self Publishing.  Time moved on and I began discovering other great Indie Authors: Kendall Grey, Harper Sloan, Sloan Johnson, Lola Stark , etc.  There were so many during that period I read and loved.

I had written Destiny’s Detour in about 30 days and over the next year and a half, I revised it at least 100 times.  In the meantime, I began a book blog with a friend and loved reading and reviewing other authors books.  I enjoyed the way the Indie Book World was a huge support system and a huge network of friends I’ve never met.

In 2014 things changed(change is going to happen so it’s not always a bad thing).  Suddenly I was a published author, I was attending book signings, I was one of the “cool kids”.  Then more events happened, I began noticing little things,

I was changing who I was without even realizing it.  I was becoming someone I didn’t like.  I noticed more and more how the Indie World was turning into an adult version of high school.  My anxiety was going off the charts.  I could hardly function.  I realize looking back some of it was my unhappiness with my own behavior and some was unhappiness with what I saw going on in the Book World I loved.

I’m sorry for the wrongs I committed  in 2014.  Please know if I personally hurt you, or offended you.  I am truly sorry, that is not who I am or who I want to be and I will take every step I can to avoid that from here on out.

In Nov 2014 my grandma took a serious fall that ended with her being life flighted and having to have the whole right side of her face reconstructed.  It was a defining moment in my life.  I realized then I wasn’t happy with the way things were going.  Over the next 5-6 months as we went through her recovery period I was not a part of the Indie World day in and day out.  I felt better, my anxiety was less.

When I finally made my way back to the community I did so vowing not to make the mistakes I made the first time, I wouldn’t be “that person”

It’s been a struggle the last 2 years for me.  I no longer have the same circle of Indie friends.  I’ve struggled with book sales, I have watched the Indie World tear each other apart and it makes me sad.  Sad that the world I once loved and respected has become a middle school battleground.  Readers and authors attacking each other, Authors attacking authors, Readers becoming entitled and demanding free books etc from Authors. The list could go on.

Authors are people, we have feelings, families, lives.  Writing is a career, one many of us are passionate about.  And often times you ask yourself is it really worth it?  I will never give up writing it’s too important to me.  You’ll never see me post I’m giving up writing.

However, I have to rethink actually publishing because it’s not worth my family going into debt, it’s not worth the anxiety, and it’s not worth watching the MEAN GIRL mentality that has become all too common.

My Challenge:  If you are a part of the Indie Book World in any way, remember what made you fall in love with the community, embrace it, live it,  nothing stays the same but even in a changing world we can maintain a respect for our fellow Indies.  I’d love to hear positive stories of how the Indie Book World has helped you.  You can leave a comment or email me.

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