And now for the news!
Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing, specifically interviews with or articles written by self-publishing authors and experts!
In this article, published in The Daily Wildcat (the official paper of the University of Arizona and surrounds) during the lead-up to the Tucson Festival of Books (held this last weekend), Mekayla Phan dives into the indie publishing experience of one Christoper Patterson. A Tucson native and graduate of UA, the story might seem at first glance to be an extended (if interesting) promotion for the event, which is one of the city’s as well as the UA’s biggest literary and academic events each year. But as Phan makes clear, Patterson’s experience in publishing has relevance outside of any one time of year and any one location. For here is the prototypical story of a modern author, one who started out on a traditional publishing path because that was the literary ideal, but who ended up “going indie” and choosing to self-publish for reasons of rights and control over the finished product. Says Patterson, “Twenty or 30 years ago, if you self-published fiction it was because you weren’t good enough for anyone to pick you up — no publishing company wanted to work with you, no agency wanted to work with you, so you self-published [….] The idea was that is you had sub-par quality, but that is just not the case anymore.” And we are happier for it! You can read the rest of Phan’s article on The Daily Wildcat website.
We may not talk about dieselfunk a great deal on this blog–alright, so we’re pretty sure we haven’t talked about it before, ever–but that doesn’t mean we’re not paying attention. This week, Jude Terror engages with indie comic legend Jeff Smith for lovers not just of dieselfunk (which, according to the website http://www.dieselfunk.com, run by the same people as the “Dieselfunk Dispatch,” involves “an alternative past where the pulp stylings of Buck Rogers, Flash Gordon, and Fritz Lang’s Metropolis collide with the real world events of World War 2, FDR, Nazis, the Harlem Renaissance and the oppressive Jim Crow era”) but lovers of indie comics and indie publishing in general. For those not familiar, Jeff Smith became a legend for hand-selling his comic series, Bone, which was an even more arduous process in the 90s than it is now. Bone is now available in collected, beautifully-bound editions at most comic book stores, but that didn’t used to be the case. Once upon a time, Smith went his own way when no one else would support him. Jude Terror’s column is less of a thorough overview of Smith’s story than it is an introduction, but we think it’s an interesting place to start if you’re looking to learn more about Smith’s work and how Bone has become part of a larger ecology of indie publishing.
Last, but certainly not least, we turn to this interview of self-publishing author Heather Leigh in Eureka’s Times-Standard. Some authors are inspired by dreams, others by happenstance and serendipity. Heather Leigh was inspired by something a little more unusual: a love letter drawn on a chalk board. Says Leigh, ““As part of cleaning out the business next door to the one-room schoolhouse in Orick, there was a sale of a bunch of random stuff and there was this chalkboard. Somebody had written a love letter on a chalkboard.” From the moment she stumbled across this unusual find, Leigh began to put together the plot of her latest book, The Earth Game Option, which she self-published. Like Patterson, Leigh has previously gone the traditional publishing route, but found it didn’t answer to her needs. Leigh poses a relatable question for any author: “How do you take all the sublime existential stuff and make it into a novel? It has to be transformed a bit. You have to make it fun.” But how to do that? One way is to get out and reconnect with her body through Zumba … but also to allow herself to not always be focused and orderly. “I go to Zumba class and I can’t concentrate because I am thinking about the characters in the novel,” says Leigh. “‘Should she do this? What happens next?’ All these questions come.” And that’s okay, the article suggests. It’s okay to not have all the answers. You can read the full article online at the link!
As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry.This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog every Monday to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.