Why was this decision less than a “no-brainer” you ask? I’ll tell you a little bit.
- While I enjoy writing, talking about writing, teaching writing, and editing very much, I don’t always enjoy the “business” side of things. As an author, I have no choice but to do my best as a business and to treat my books as commodities (which they are). I worry that I will fall short.
- Book signings terrify me. I am a lively person and decent conversationalist, but I’m also an introvert and insecure about my appearance.
- Very good books can go unpublished in their writer’s lifetime and beyond, though sometimes “less worthy” books appear and do well. It confuses my sense of quality and fairness.
- The query process is daunting. Research, personal paragraphs, synopsis, rejection, rejection, rejection. This is compounded by a few unique features in Recompense. I don’t see anything like it on the current market, and that’s not always a good thing.
- The industry is changing almost daily and no one knows where it will end up. Lots of options are available now. Is traditional publishing still the way to go? Is the Indie route better in the long term? How does an author best combine them?
- Speaking of author, the term is reserved for a writer who has been published. However, the term “published” is somewhat fluid in its definition. Since I was a child, I wanted to be an author. Now no one can say for sure what it means.
- I want to teach at least on the community level. I want to share the passion for the process of writing, for the creative satisfaction, for the benefits (healing, decompression, a written record, etc). I want to watch other people catch fire for this thing I love so much. My chances of teaching this way or doing workshops someday are greatly enhanced through traditional publishing.
So, the decision is made, and I have begun researching agencies and agents while I learn all I can about queries and writing a synopsis for Recompense. Excited? Yes. Scared? You betcha.