Due to some mysterious technical difficulty I may never understand, my friend Bill Craig was unable to receive my direct invitations to become a contributor to this blog. So, I’m posting this on his behalf. Thanks, Bill, for taking the time to share your experiences!
Sometimes I see things which as a writer upset me. One of those things is when so-called small presses try to bully their writers into doing things beyond the scope of writing, such as voting for awards that the publisher controls so they can be viewed as having some sort of legitimacy.
Another thing, and this is something I am seeing more and more of, especially from certain genre small presses, is that they want to writer to put out blood sweat and tears to get them a product, and then let it sit on a shelf for years without ever doing anything with it. Sure this might have worked for publishing houses in the past, but now in these days of self-publishing that model is out-dated. Several friends have been going through similar issues.
I did a little work with a couple of them and had similar experiences to what the original pulp writers went through. Churn out the work, not get paid, and then it sits on a shelf, or rather these days in a computer file.
As a self-published author, I have control over my work from story conception to cover art. I do the interior design, get the story edited, make the necessary corrections, format it and get it out there. I market here aggressively and I network daily with readers and authors.
I do continue to work with on house because they do what the publisher is supposed to do, they market my new titles when they come out, and I generally produce 3-4 books a year for them. They took two titles I had self-published and got them selling, then when I brought them the Marlow series, they snapped it up and catapulted it to a best-selling series on Amazon.com
In the ever-changing market of indie publishing, sometimes the author has to take the time to do it themselves. If you don't know a lot about marketing, find someone who does and pick their brains, then apply what you've learned. Country music artist Taylor Swift was one of the first to use Social Media to propel herself to fame by using My Space to preview her music and build a fan base.
It takes hard work and perseverance to make yourself a success in this business. I'm a writer, writing is what I do, It's who I am.
—Bill Craig, Author