Day 20: Pride and Self-Publication

How does my garden grow?
How does an author grow her brand? With quality storytelling, great covers, and word-of-mouth recommendations via social media friends–like you!

It’s easy to forget how quickly the stigma of self-publishing has vanished. At the turn of the century–this century!–self-publishing was the domain of the vanity press and a few hardy souls willing to take the risk. And humble their pride…

As print-on-demand technology became available, many small publishing houses sprang up. My first book series was released by such a press in 2009 and 2010. It wasn’t all that long ago, and yet so much about the publishing industry has changed.

Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing (and the 70% royalty for ebooks) was a game-changer. Authors looked at that number, did some hard thinking, and put aside their pride. Not too long ago, a popular Austen-genre blog denied membership to indie authors because, you know, only traditionally-published writers were “real authors”. Not anymore!

When I first began blogging about social media, an on-line platform was an edge. Now? It is a lifeline. ~Kristen Lamb

Most Austen fiction is now self-published. And why not? The fan base is there, and even traditionally-published authors have to do their own promotion. Why give up a hefty royalty percentage if I’m doing all the work?

Social media is more important than ever. Bit by bit I’ve been learning how to connect with readers. Not because you are difficult to like! It’s just that in real life there is little about me that makes for, you know, gripping reading! This blog challenge is teaching me to look  deeper and share more.

I have every reason in the world to jump on the indie bandwagon: A winsome book concept, an established fan base, and the “right” Jane Austen characters. That is to say, Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy.

You might have noticed that I removed the Darcy By Any Other Name release countdown from the sidebar. So here’s the thing. While my strength continues to improve, the demands of full-time teaching have caused my energy level to fluctuate. I decided to pass on the added pressure. I’m gunning for October, honest!

Today’s prompt asks for publishing particulars  (in case you’re interested):

  • Formatting:  I’m using software licensed from The Book Designer for both print and ebook editions
  • Cover Design: Damonza
  • Printing and Distribution: Kindle Direct Publishing
  • Audiobook: Not at this time (Alas, I am an audiobook snob!)

Thanks so much for stopping by to read. And … Happy Friday!

5 thoughts on “Day 20: Pride and Self-Publication

  1. I think you sell yourself short, Laura, if you don’t think your life isn’t exciting. Look at all you’ve accomplished this year! That’s exciting. You could write about your cat, and that would be an exciting story, too. Or what about adding a daughter-in-law to your household of sons? I bet that has been exciting. But somehow I think your finest achievement has been keeping body and soul together and the home fires burning while you walked through the valley of the shadow of death. How did your family handle that? There’s a story in the somewhere.

    You, my friend, are an extraordinary woman.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I could blog about students, but … yeah. Problematic! 🙂
    I could blog about my sons, but they get a little nervous. You can hear them saying it: “Mom!”

    This challenge is helping me talk about myself, a thing that has never my strong suit. Unless I have a funny story to tell. Thanks, Gayle, for the props!


  3. Thanks, Vivian! I’m glad to be here too. Still growing, still exploring. The publication trail has many bends, so I must bend with it. Adaptation is the name of this game, and the lessons publishing offers are those that are learned by doing. So I’m doing! 🙂


  4. Laura,
    I love everything about the sounds and storyline of your book. I’m not so familiar with that time period but I sure am a romantic! I am so glad you are doing this challenge. I am learning more about you and Darcy By Any Other Name. I am so looking forward to reading it!
    A lot has changed for sure! But still some cogs in the industry turn away when I say I’m “indie.” They know what that means. The city newspaper was “very busy,” for months. I didn’t give up and kept asking them to read and review my book. Four months after I started asking them to read it and without notifying me, my mother pointed out a three-quarter page spread on the Lifestyles page. It was amazing! So, I was quietly happy that my persistence paid off. On the other hand, I wanted to sell my book in a catalog for Christian books and without a publisher behind me, it was “No way, Jose” The 70% cut on kindle is nice, though. Now if I could only think of a way to keep sales coming until I get my next book out!


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