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Wednesday, September 5, 2018

#IWSG: September


Happy Insecure Writers Support Group Day. IWSG is the brainchild of Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh.

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds! Thanks, Alex, for starting this group and keeping it going. 

Thanks to this month's awesome hosts:  Toi Thomas, T. Powell Coltrin, M.J. Fifield, and Tara Tyler!

Like most months, this past month has been one of highs and lows. 

The Highs:
  • 3 local book events--sold more books than at any other event
  • print version of NUMBERS NEVER LIE is now for sale
  • wrote 1k-word flash fiction for WEP (fun!)
  • got the rights back for ONE RED SHOE
  • celebrated grand-nephew's 1st birthday on Labor Day (so much fun)
The Lows:
  • flooded basement--sump pump quit while we were away over the weekend to the 1st birthday celebration
  • purging papers and other things that got wet (maybe purging isn't that bad)
  • ripping up 4-yr-old carpet (groan)
  • restoration costs--$$$
The Best:
  • wrote 17,000 words on THE SPY, An Outer Rim Novel
  • the Highs outnumbering the Lows

September's optional question - What publishing path are you considering/did you take, and why?

I've been published by two small presses and self-published. I choose self-publishing. I like the control. Yes, it costs money upfront (professional editing and cover design), but I control the cover, the price, and the distribution. I can do sales when I want. With the small presses, I did 99% of the advertising. As an indie, I do all the promotion. From my second publisher, I received 35% of the price of the digital copies and 7% of the print. I'd rather receive 65-70% (digital) and 40% (print). Distribution to bookstores is limited for both small presses and self-publishing. By doing the legwork, I'm getting my self-published books into more libraries and brick-and-mortar bookstores.

Would I earn more money with a big press? Absolutely. With the small presses, no. This is my career. I love to write, but my goal has always been to earn money. With self-publishing, I am achieving that.

Check out the new anthology contest:


IWSG Anthology
The 2018 Annual IWSG Anthology Contest
Word count: 3500-6000
Genre: Young Adult Romance
 Theme:
Masquerade
A Masquerade can be a false show or pretense, someone pretending to be someone they aren't. It can be a ball, a fancy dress party, it can be a mask. Open to interpretation.

Click here to find others on the Insecure Writers Support Group Blog Hop. Or go to IWSG on Facebook to see who’s blogging today.


41 comments:

  1. Ooh, good luck with recovering from the flooded basement, hope there's not too much damage

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    1. Thanks, Angela. It's pretty bad. Could be worse--sewer or storm flood.

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  2. Hope September is better for your house! Sounds like your publishing path is making you perfectly pleased;-)

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    1. Thanks, Jennifer. Always a bright spot amid chaos. LOL

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  3. It was good for me to read your reasons for self-publishing. I'm thinking about it heavily. I took a self-publishing course from the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers and although it seems to be lots of work, I might go for it with one of my manuscripts and try it. Thanks.

    Shalom aleichem,
    Pat G @ EverythingMustChange

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    1. Good for you, Pat. It is a lot of work. But if you read and follow directions carefully, you'll do fine. I was so scared to try it, I took a year to decide. So glad I did.

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  4. How terrible to have the basement flooded! But it looks like you didn't let that stop the writing. Good for you....and may the renovation costs be lower than you thought ;)

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  5. Ugh. I feel your pain. With our first house, the sewage backed up and flooded a couple rooms in our first month there. Lots of memories. *shudders* Here's wishing you sanity with the clean up.

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    1. Oh, Crystal, that would be awful and much worse than ground water from the sump. Thank goodness for help from our kids and the burly guys who hauled everything to our garage.

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  6. Thanks for sharing some of your Highs and Lows, Diane. That's what life's all about, isn't it? I think it's awesome that writers now have the choice to self-publish and reap more of the benefits. Have a good month!

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    1. Thanks, Sandra. I love that we have so many options. When I started writing as a career, there weren't as many.

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  7. Wow Diane, so glad you posted about what your reasoning is in Indie publishing. It's really nice to hear a positive story about Indie-ness (yes I made that word up!). So very sorry to hear about the basement flood :( Hope it isn't too bad.

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    1. Love your made-up word, Lisa. Always pros and cons on any route a writer takes. Thanks for hoping the flood isn't too bad.

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  8. Hi Diane, 17,000 words is a good progress.

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    1. Thanks, Rachna. Some days it was like slogging through molasses and other days like flying.

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  9. Flooded basements are a pain - we've been through that. We lost mostly stuff we weren't using (that's why it was in the basement) but also some irreplacable photographs, Christmas ornaments, and the like. And the $$$$ to clean it up. But there it is.

    Awesome on the 17,000 words! And I lean to your thoughts on self-publishing. My good friend and author, Elaine Orr, has also done both and had the same experience and observations.

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    1. Thanks, Lee. Glad to hear others (like Elaine) experienced the same thing. Good to know I'm not alone.

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  10. It is wonderful that you are achieving your goal. Good luck with that basement...been there, done that. It's not fun.

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    1. No, it isn't, Liza. But, we're dealing with help from our fantastic children.

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  11. One Red Shoe is your TWRP title right? For me, I'm keeping the books they've published with them since I won't be able to do any better on my own if I self-published those books. I'd only get my rights back if I got an agent who said it would be a good idea and promised I could get a bigger publisher to push them more. lol But, after my series is done, I will be going elsewhere. TWRP just isn't right for me anymore. It'll be an interesting journey when that time comes.

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    1. Yes, Chrys, that's the book. I've thought about a sequel (even written part of it) for years. If ORS stayed with the publisher, I couldn't self-pub anything with those characters. I know many people who are very happy with them. I was happy to see it published, now I want to do more with it.

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  12. Glad you sold so many books and that your writing is going well. I think many authors who self-publish like the control like you.

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    1. Thanks, Natalie. Everybody has to decide what works best for them. I'm glad I had the experience with both presses. I'm happier on my own.

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  13. Flooded basement sucks, but your writing highs are wonderful. I agree absolutely about the self-publishing road.

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    1. Thanks, Olga. Life is a bunch of highs and lows. Hopefully, when it all balances out, the highs are more.

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  14. What a shame about your basement! Glad you've had some wonderful writing accomplishments to help balance that out a bit. It's really interesting to read what publishing paths people are taking and why. Loved hearing your take on it.

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    1. Thanks, Ellen. I, too, am enjoying reading what choices others have made/are making. Just like "how to write" (plotting or pantsing) you do what works best for you.

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  15. Sorry about your basement.

    DLP gives slightly better royalties (and our imprint a lot better) but since I'm spending all the money I think it's fair. And I've been a marketing maniac this week for Sherry's new book.

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    1. Thanks, Diane. So glad to hear about the marketing you're doing. I think the lack of marketing (by the pub) is a real drawback. Of course, it makes sense that you'd keep more of the money since you're spending it to advance sales.

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  16. Ooh, I cringed when you talked about the basement flooding. I could see $$$ going down the drain (or sump pump). I like your attitude about the highs outnumbering the lows. Excellent way of looking at it. Congrats on your new book release!
    JQ Rose

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    1. Thanks, Janet. If I didn't put a positive spin on this disaster, I'd cry.

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  17. I like your attitude. Control is nice, but the self-publisher has to be ready for the work involved. A book isn't going to sell itself.

    Your highs are pretty outstanding while your lows sound like a big hassle. But I agree that your highs outweigh those hassles.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

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    1. You are so right about a book not selling itself. It has to stand out and that means someone has to promote it. If I'm spending the time, energy, and money, more of the royalties should come my way. Thanks for stopping by.

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  18. Happy Be-lated IWSG Day!
    Congratulations on the sales and the events.
    Sorry to hear about your basement.
    Glad self-publishing is allowing you to make money with your writing.

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    1. Thanks, Toi. And thanks for co-hosting. After years of frustration (over writing with no income), I'm pretty happy.

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  19. Sounds like a very productive month, sounds like the highs definitely outweighed your flooding woes. Great to hear how well self-publishing is working for you. Control is good!

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    1. Thanks, Nick. The flooding is a costly affair. But there are worse disasters. This is minor compared to flooded streets or fires burning out of control. We deal with it and move on.

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  20. Other than the flood, it was at least a good book/writing month. :) I agree, self publishing has some big benefits over small press publishing. I'm sure there are exceptions to that, but we haven't discovered them yet. Until then, book events, here we come!

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    1. Thanks, Jean. Last year, I didn't think book events were profitable. This year is different. Yay! I do like breaking even. I like making a profit even better. LOL

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  21. Oh no to the failed sump pump! My basement has flooded more than once, and it's such a nightmare to clean up. Feeling your pain. Hope things are better now.

    Glad the indie publishing journey has been a successful one for you. It takes a lot of work and know-how, but it certainly can pay off.

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