My Author Journey: How I Went From “Oohhh NaNoWriMo Sounds Fun” To “Self-Published Author”

Grab a beverage, sit back and get comfy because I have a story to share.

It all started about ten years ago when I decided to try writing a novel in one month during National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) which gave me the writing bug something fierce, so I decided to take a writing class here in NYC and then an online correspondence course in writing and then I outlined a whole book using another course. (I love taking courses yo!)

Around this time I also had the cutest baby in the world and quit my day job. I had dreams of writing while he napped – which I sometimes did, other times I too naped because although he was adorable he was not the best sleeper.  Momma was tired. 

Let’s just say, what I thought would take 2 years tops took 8 years from start to finish.  This included outlining, writing the first draft, buying another course to teach me how to edit my novel, doing that very long process, and getting so sick of my own book that I wanted to scream.

Once I called it done or at least done for me, I started researching agents and got super overwhelmed.  I had joined a Facebook group for writers and the vast majority were starting to look into self-publishing.

I was still skeptical because the world hadn’t really changed yet and some people still looked down their noses at indie publishing thinking it was like those vanity presses where you just want to get your book made so you can hand it out to friends and family (which no judgment from me – you still wrote a freaking book, I’m proud of you!)

So, I did what I do best – research and reading and I bought a course. HA! I learned all about self-publishing and got a professional editor (who’s amazing) and hired a professional book cover designer (who’s also amazing) and I self-published my novel using Amazon’s publishing tools.   

For me, I decided I was too impatient to wait another few years for an agent to pick me, for that agent to send the manuscript around to publishing houses, for someone there to pick me, and then the whole process of turning that into a book. I didn’t want to wait that long after taking 8 years to write the book.  

And I love being an indie author.  

Some days are really hard as I wear all the hats and have the final say in all decisions but then again – I wear all the hats and have the final say in all decisions.  Meaning, I get to be in full control of my novel and how it looks online and out in the world.

I’m really glad that we, as writers, have options. So, if you are a writer what’s your opinion? Do you dream of having a publisher guide you along this journey or are you excited to try things out on your own, discover things, make mistakes and try again?

And I have a question for my readers – how do you find out about books? Especially indie books? Do you let the bookstores guide you or do you have a favorite resource for discovering your next great read?  Hit me up in the comments below (scroll down to where it says Leave a Reply) or email me here and let me know!


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