I love indie authors.
I’ve been doing this for, let’s see, Tina and I formed Barely Salvageable in late June of 2015, so about six months now, and I’ve been researching the business a good deal longer than that, and every person I’ve met, either in person or via the internet, has been helpful, friendly, and open.
There’s a huge quantity of free resources out there produced by indie authors, and while they don’t hand over the keys to the kingdom, they do tell you what worked for these specific authors. These resources come in all formats; video, blog post, and podcast. Most are free, meaning that the author has taken the time to produce the resource and possibly spent actual money making it available to the public. There are authors out there selling infoproducts, and while that’s not what I want to do,I can’t begrudge these people for wanting to charge a modest fee for their accumulated experience and efforts.
There are social media groups and lists all over the place where you can meet authors of a whole range of experience levels, from newbies to pros. You’ll be able to find people at your skill level, you’ll be able to find folks at a higher skill level who are willing and eager to provide advice, and folks at a lower skill level that you can offer advice to.
I don’t want to paint this like a rose garden. I’m sure there are jerks out there. I just haven’t met any yet.
It’s as though it’s a group full of people who just want to lift one another up, and you know why this is important to me? Because when I started thinking seriously about starting the company, I wanted to do business this way. I never wanted to compete with people for “market share,” (a concept that I don’t think exists for authors, though it may exist for publishers), and I didn’t want to have to guard my methods and experiences as secrets. I always had a vision for this thing as being as constant a source of positivity in the community and the broader world as possible. I don’t want us to fight over pieces of a dwindling pie; I want us to all work together to make a bigger pie! I want there to be more authors and more books, not fewer.
I’m a writer, and I’m a reader. I’m excited about books, and I’m exciting about writing. And I have to tell you, there’s a limit to how excited I can be for my own books, and that usually peaks before the book is even published. Seriously, my primary regret in all this is that I don’t have more time to read books, to post reviews, and to promote other authors. I mean, let’s face it, I don’t even have the time to promote my own work.
This has been such an intensely positive experience for me, and I have met so many cool people that I would never have otherwise met, and it really honest to god feels like we’re all working on the same thing. And for someone who’s never had a great deal of interest in collaboration, this really feels great.