Indie Author Roller-coaster

I am a daydreamer who decided to let loose my stories, characters, and thoughts into the physical world via words. Now, those daydreams are written on paper or across an electronic screen. Due to the fact that I am impatient and headstrong, I self-publish. Oh, I do occasionally try to locate a traditional publisher or an agent, but after the second or third send-off I lose the desire. The reason for my search: I suck at marketing. Oh, I’ve wonderful ideas that have even been ‘borrowed’ by other authors and a few small publishers I’ve met at local signings, but I am not a car salesman. I do believe in my books and love them, but I’m mostly an introvert. I write because there is a story to be told and I want to share it. So what if my books are not published through the traditional methods-there are plenty of Indie Authors out there today. Of course, that decision is like buying a ticket for a roller-coaster. I loathe roller-coasters, but I have rode them for my children. Much like I am with the ride I loathe some aspects of being an Indie author, but I love creating stories. Daydreaming is my thrill and like the air we breath, I find it necessary so I continuously ride.

Inspiration may come in even the smallest tidbit (i.e. word, object, sound, etc.) and a story is created. Praise from not only one, but multitudes of readers give affirmation that I did something right and I am on a smooth track. With that said, the soul-sucking, muse-killing, ‘step on me please’ moment can cut short the track and I drop. An example for this is learning that a school mate, who took the traditional route, landed an agent and then subsequently a publishing house for two books. It’s yin/yang hell and those random happenings pop up like an extreme game of whack-a-mole or the straight tracks and sick drops of a roller-coaster. Writing is addictive though so what can you do? Once you finish a story and receive praise… Well, it’s like eating chips or chocolate gummi bears — one is not enough (story or accolade).

Did I mention those pesky outside forces that do not involve the ‘creative world’, but yet can have a damning influence? Ah yes, those lovely reminders that elves are not cleaning your house, you doubt there is a paying job that you will ever like, you have yet to find a tree that grows money, a vacation is something everyone else gets, exhaustion flows through you more than your own blood, and those darling angels you gave birth to no longer adore you. Yeah, those wonderful dips in the Indie ride can zap your muse. What can you do when that happens? Good question. I’m not certain there is just one answer. I think everyone must find their own solution. For me, I hang on tightly, tuck my chin to my chest, and close my eyes when it goes for the drop. It’s hard and sometimes it takes a few tries, but my chin eventually does unglue from my chest and I reopen my eyes. Once I get over mourning ‘what I am not’ and decide that I don’t really want to get off the ride, I force myself to sit in front of my laptop or stare down at a piece of paper with my pencil in hand and tell myself that I will…

There will always be calm lulls and teasing dips that sometimes turn to acrophobia-worthy high climbs and heart-squeezing drops…you just need to be stubborn and hang on to the bar.

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