I’ve had a lot of curious people ask me some interesting questions. They all seem to be about my current situation and future plans in writing. I’ve answered the ones I can think of below.
I started this book like any other, with the intention of getting it published. My last manuscript, Inhabitants, never caught the attention of an agent. I had plans of trying one more time, with the one I’m writing now, and then thinking of my writing as a hobby. Just slap a cover on them and throw them on Amazon. I’ve already stopped marketing. I’m not in this for the sales.
So why do you want them traditionally published?
Two reasons, maybe three. One, the approval of the powers that be. I want my work to be good enough for a traditional publisher. The other reason was so I could have a job I liked instead of one I tolerated. I love every aspect of writing. I love the joy of a new story popping in my mind, of sorting through those stories to see which one, if any, will work, of plotting those stories, of writing those stories-discovering the characters and what happens, the tears, anger and frustration when it doesn’t work. Every. Aspect.
Except marketing. I love going to events, whether story-telling or book signings or other stuff. I love interviews and conversation, but I hate trying to get sales. I mean, if I had a PR agent who told me, “Do this and this and this,” and I was a full-time writer, then sure, no problem. But with my limited time and money, forget it. It’s not worth the stress. Traditional publishing takes care of that for me. (allow me to qualify my definition of “traditional publishing” as not including micro publishers.)
So what’s going to happen to Inhabitants?
Ah, I get asked this alot. I told so many people (because at the time it was true) I would self-publish it if an agent didn’t take it. At the same time, I also thought it would be my last attempt at the traditional route. It has since been shelved. My current plans with it are to let my current manuscript run its course, whether an agent picks it or not, then go another route. Whether that route is a quick overview of Inhabitants before listing it with Amazon or querying small publishers, I don’t know. I won’t know until the time comes. But I will follow through with my promise, one way or another, and have Inhabitants published at some point.
Why have you made these decisions?
There are several reasons for this, but they basically boil down to I have to move on with my life. I have been writing, marketing, querying, researching, etc. every spare second of every day for years now. That’s not fair to myself or my family. Our family is changing, and I have to adjust to that. That’s not to say I’m going to quit writing or that I won’t be this obsessive about it in the future, but for now, it has to take a backseat.
What if a book sells?
Of course I would go with that! Unfortunately though, the book would have to sell well for me to not have to work elsewhere at the same time as writing. That said, I would probably return to my obsessive writing behavior until I no longer had to work elsewhere or I fizzled out, whichever happens.
What’s the rush with your current manuscript? Why are you so obsessed with it?
Again, two reasons-lol. I am really proud of this manuscript. It’s unlike anything I’ve ever written. I honestly believe it’s my best work. At the same time, I am filled with the self-doubt all writers face (another reason I want to be traditionally published. If I was represented by a reputable agent, etc, much of that self-doubt would disappear…or so I believe).
The other reason is because I’m going back to school in two weeks. Yikes! Yeah, I already have a degree, but it’s not going anywhere, so I’m getting a second one. It’s the right time in our family’s life to do this. I can’t write and attend school and work all at the same time. That’s why I’m so obsessed with finishing this manuscript by a certain time. I’m trying to get this thing in betas’ hands by the 14th so I can query it over summer break.
So there you go. I hope that answers most, if not all of your questions. Yes, Inhabitants will come out, one way or another. Unfortunately, this is a business for the very very patient. I hope to announce my request for beta readers via my mailing list, The Collective Cauldron, very soon. Hope to see you there!