Facts of Life,  Indie Author Life,  Writing Journey,  Writing World

In-depth Analysis or Something

NO REST FOR THE WICKED releases next week!!! In other exciting news, my first blog review went live yesterday. You can read it RIGHT OVER HERE @ thegenreminx.com – (Spoiler-Free). Okay, with the debut on the horizon, I thought it would be fun to discuss my reasons for going the indie route and the factors that most likely influenced my decision. ^_^

The initial thought, in true me fashion, was very random. I literally woke up one day and decided to “give it a try” with a small project. But seeds never sprout up out of nothing. Of course, I was frustrated with the traditional route (agent, big publisher, bookstore), but that’s just a frustrating process in general.

Seed One: Scary Stories! I heard my first horror tale from the publishing jungle back in 2008. I was barely back in the writing saddle after a perfection-chasing and neurosis-fueled hiatus, so it was extra horrifying. I chose to adopt a “that won’t happen to me” mentality. Of course, there are plenty of great stories, too, but the horror stories lurked in the back of my mind in an ever increasing pile of scary muck. For my sanity, I needed more control over this journey.

Seed Two: Vampire story. The chance of getting an agent with a vampire novel in 2012 (at the height of the Twilight hysteria) was incalculable. When this went down, people tried to encourage me to go the indie way. After all, paranormal fans still ate vampire books like chocoholics eat chocolate. I did seriously consider it for about a week. But I didn’t want to do all that work. Haha. I also didn’t want to finish that series. 😂

Seed Three: Choices! There are few things sadder in the writing world than watching a writer try to talk themselves into liking a cover that’s super hard on the eyes, to say the least. But then again, they probably should do that. Because they have no choice.

Seed Four: Agent Interviews. I know those are meant to be helpful, but they made me feel so discouraged. Like, pit of quick sand, there is no hope, and also, “you losers are bothering us” kind of discouraged. I’m not mad at them, but like, it was soo depressing. I did stop reading them, just FYI. I’m a pessimist, not a sadist.

Seed Five: Indie Writers & Writing Friends. In 2014 and 2015, buddies Jodi Perkins and Michelle Athy published awesome pieces of work and didn’t combust from the process. Between them and other writers who also didn’t explode, that was very encouraging. After all, my greatest fear was that I would combust and die. Each time I saw someone else do it, I thought maybe I could do it, too. But you know how internal chatter can be. Self-doubt reared it’s giant apple head. “Do you know how many people fail? You are not special.”

Eventually, self-doubt switched sides and helped push me along. 🙂 Ultimately, though, the decision came down to the fact that I was more excited about self-publishing than I was about any other route. Pair that with the fact that I also had a novel that I could absolutely stand behind – why not? ^_^

I always thought I needed an agent and a publisher to legitimize my writing – make me a real writer. But no amount of praise and accolades will make anyone feel like they’re a “real” writer until they believe it themselves. Plus, there’s no validation like reader validation.

Of course, I may fall on my face, but I could also not fall on my face. And I rather try and fail than keep doing the same thing over and over again because I’m too scared to do anything else. Hey, if this ship is going down, it’s going down on my terms. 😀

Hopefully this makes sense. I have all these thoughts in my head. But I’m so excited about my book! I hope it finds people. I hope they like it. And if they don’t, hey, try the next one. ^_^

And speaking of #TheNextOne – an update before I go! I finished the first round of edits on “Winter’s Siren!” The little weirdo is now in the hands of betas! I just finished Monday night, so I’m still breathing in the “way too excited” fumes. 😀


  • Sunflower Michelle

    Ooh–you finished the next one, too! I’m so excited for your book. I’m also excited to actually self-publish something longer than 30K words and to do it in a more organized manner. Time to read me some how to self-publish type books.

    I mostly wanted to self-pub Pearl to see if I could do it, if that makes sense? Also, I wanted her story to be out and I didn’t want to pad it to make the word count longer and who goes through the query process for a novella, for God’s sake?

    • Krystal Jane

      Yes! APE was a fun book to read. That would be helpful in some capacity. I wanted to do what you did, dip my feet in the water with something smaller, but since the novel had itself together already, some of the things I read made it look super manageable, which it kind of was. Lol!

  • Tonja Drecker

    *squeal* Next week! Ha – you have ‘real’ writer in your post too 🙂 Self-publishing is definitely a totally okay alternative, and I’m betting you made a great choice. But then, the book is really good too. Can’t wait to see it out in the world!

  • Jodi

    Hey Krystal, yay, I see my name in this post! (Apparently this is what it takes me to comment. Bad friend. Bad. *slaps own hand*).

    Great post, and I couldn’t agree more with everything you expressed. I’ve told you this before, but wanting to feel like a ‘legitimate’ writer was the #1 thing keeping me from going indie. I felt like if I succumbed to self-publishing, I’d be an official member of the Writers Reject Club. Several things ultimately changed my mind, but the two biggest were:
    1. Reading some amazing novels by indie authors. Not that there aren’t crummy ones out there too–sadly there are lots–but the awesome ones sent a powerful message to me that self-publishing isn’t a reflection of talent (or lack thereof).
    2. The realization that I’m a writer–a damned decent one–and I didn’t want to sit on standby my whole life, waiting for someone else to figure that out. I decided if I published my book and only 50 people in the whole world ever read it, well, that’s 50 people who would have never read it otherwise. A writer loves to write, but at the core of it, a writer wants more than anything for their work to be read. Indie publishing gave me a path to reach that whimsical little dream.

    I’m SO GIDDY that you decided to go indie, because it means I get to hold your beautiful book in my hands as early as next week!

    • Krystal Jane

      LOL! It’s kind of crazy. This time last year, I was still 100% on the traditional path. It was that or die! But I did suspect that I would eventually get tired of sitting and waiting and running around like a crazy person. I feel like I was heading down a path labeled “either do it yourself or quit writing.” Because what I was doing wasn’t going to be sustainable to me. So much of the fun of storytelling is getting to share that story with other people! I felt kind of stuck in a cycle of shelving stuff. Especially since I kept getting such good feedback on everything. Of course, writing makes me happy, but what filmmaker wants to make films only for himself to watch? That’s so sad!

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