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One Cobble at a Time

Thoughts after a panel on self publishing

Sandra Tayler's Journal

responsible woman

A cobble by itself is just a small stone, but when many of them lay together they create a path . My life is made up of many discrete parts. I have to find ways to fit them all into place so that I can continue to journey where I desire to go. This journal records some of the cobbles that create my path.

Thoughts after a panel on self publishing

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responsible woman

You’ve probably never heard of Anna del C Dye. I hadn’t until I sat next to her on a panel and listened to her talk about her books in heavily accented English. She talked about the stories she’d loved writing, the process of working with a self-publishing company, and the enormous confidence she’d gained by proving to herself that she could write a book in her adopted language. Anna also talked about the satisfaction she receives by hearing from people who have loved her books. I’ve never seen Anna’s books. I can’t speak to their literary quality. I know for certain that Anna herself was a good and admirable person who has worked really hard to achieve a personal dream.

You are also unlikely to have heard of Jill Hancock Reeder. I sat next to her at a book signing. She set out her children’s book about surrogate pregnancy next to my picture book about impulsivity. Jill was supremely qualified to know how to explain surrogacy to children. She has three kids of her own and has been a surrogate for other people three times. She decided to have her 12 year old daughter do the illustrations for the book as a family project. Her book is well known in the online surrogacy communities and is hailed as both useful and necessary. She sells very few books to the general public, they glance, refuse to meet her eyes, and walk away.

Since you’re here on my blog, you probably have heard of me. I self-published a children’s picture book. I take it with me when I do appearances and sell copies here and there. The project was a story my daughter needed and then published so that I could pay the artist. I’ve paid the artist now, but still haven’t made any money on it myself.

These are the faces of self-published authors. I’ve met many, and I expect I will meet many more as I continue to attend conventions and events. With only a few exceptions I have found self-published authors to be intelligent people with solid reasons for choosing the path that they took. They have their fair share of insecurity and eagerness to promote their work, however I see that among commercially published writers as well. In the end we are all writers with stories that we want to share and I see no value in trying to enforce a social class system based upon publication venue. Commercial publishing has as many toxic people as self publishing.

It is possible, even probable, that my self-publishing background has impacted my views on this. I’m inclined to consider self-publishers as good people because I want to be considered in that light myself. Hopefully I will retain this viewpoint even after I have a project published commercially. I know many commercially published people do hold this view. Anna talked about them and was extremely grateful to the ones she had met. I am always glad to meet writers whose love for story is more important than an imagined status system.

Mirrored from onecobble.com.

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