Monday, August 20, 2012

Guest Post: Kate Tenbeth on the Indie Revolution

UK author Kate Tenbeth wants to share her journey becoming an independently published author.

Before we jump into her post, you can see her books here:
The reason I mention this first is that Burly & Grum and the Secret City will be FREE on August 29th & 30th. Of course, you don't have to wait until then. Why not buy all three for your Kindle now, hmm?

Kate says, "Come on, join the Revolution!

In March 2011 I went to a writers’ meeting in my local library. It seemed no different to any of the other meetings I’d attended; I got out my notebook, made myself a coffee and chatted to friends, little suspecting that by the end of the meeting my perspective on life, on writing, would be changed forever. 

Our guest speaker that day was a young indie author called Penelope Fletcher, who was there to talk to us about self-publishing. She spoke clearly and simply about the process and how much she loved it. I remember thinking with absolute clarity, ‘I can do that’. So, I did. Self-publishing has, quite literally, been a huge turning point in my life and I’d like to tell you just how I went from feeling bruised and battered by the whole publishing process, to feeling like this:

Prior to hearing Penelope speak I had no idea what was going on in the publishing world, I was completely unaware of the revolution that was taking place and was still sending off manuscripts to agents and publishers and then sitting and waiting patiently, knowing my place, for their replies. Now, 18 months later, the immense power that agents and publishers once held over the fate of writers no longer exists and indie authors are a force to be reckoned with. Frankly, I count myself extremely lucky to have been a very small part of this revolution and for me the transformation has opened doors I didn’t even know existed.

If you’re hesitating about whether or not to self-publish, let me highlight some of the very positive aspects:

1.    Self-publishing doesn’t actually have to cost you a penny - you can publish your book for free so you literally have nothing to lose by putting your book out there.
2.    There are no rejection slips! Yay! I’ll say that again – there are no rejection slips!
3.    You learn so much, it’s brilliant, exciting, wonderful! 18 months ago I didn’t even know what a kindle was. Now? I have 3 books published in both e-reader and print format, I run a website, a Facebook page, write a blog and I tweet. I’ve learnt about marketing, how to edit and present a book, I’ve even made a trailer and I’m about to create audio books.
4.    You get to meet and talk to people who are on the same wavelength as you. I used to think I was a little odd and, indeed, it could be that perhaps the jury is still out on that one, but it is wonderful to talk to other people about storylines involving groblins, time travel, fairies, talking bears, etc. as if it’s the most normal thing in the world.
5.    The whole process gives you hope – there is always that chance your book will take off. I was told I’d never be published. Can I just say a quick hello to Kitty Bullard from Great Minds Think Aloud Independent Publishing? Hi Kitty – thanks for signing me up!
6.    It gives you confidence. I had so many doubts about my writing ability but over the last 18 months I’ve had some great reviews and over 140,000 of my books have been downloaded.  My writing can’t be that bad!
7.    It restores your faith in human nature. There are avid readers out there who love new authors, who want to encourage you. Let them see what you can do, don’t hide away!

I work full time and have a long commute into London, I help support my son who is now at University, I look after my father who lives locally and has Alzheimer’s. I’m not Superwoman, I’m an ordinary mum who has found something that gives me passion, and I’ll let you in on a secret - there is no Big Secret about how you go from feeling unsure and lacking in confidence to feeling great about your writing, it’s really very simple – just go ahead and self-publish. Dig out that book that’s lurking hidden in your computer, go on sites like Amazon, Smashwords, etc., read their instructions on how to upload your book and then do it. Yes, it takes concentration and effort, but when you read your own words on your Kindle, or hold the printed version in your hand for the first time, you will feel incredibly proud of your achievement.  So, to those of you who are hesitating - don’t - just take the plunge, be brave, hold your head high and be part of the indie revolution!

Good luck!"

You can find Kate at the following links:

1 comment:

  1. Great post by Kate. She might not be a Superwoman but she certainly is a wonder!