This one is great, as most of Ms. Rusch’s are, as insight into a midlist author and her wisdom and travails. There’s a lot to absorb here. My bottom line takeaway ended up being, stay indie until you’re sure the deal is strongly to your advantage, and always have more than one lawyer/agent review the potential contract.
Here’s one from Hugh Howey, who is or should be a hero to all independent authors. He makes the point that if you want to make it, don’t expect to write a single book and hit the big time. Even EL James actually did not do that – she had a huge following in fan fiction before she translated that popularity into 50 Shades. He also makes the point that success is variable and in the eyes of the beholder. For some, making a few hundred bucks a month is success, a nice paying hobby. For others, they want to go full-time and need several thousand a month to pay the bills.
He also echoes what I have been saying all along – a self-pubbed author is akin to other independent artists – musicians, painters, sculptors, etc., and needs to start from the ground up. Unless they get lucky enough to win Idol at age 16, most musicians built their career for years before getting “discovered” and hitting the big time.
He also points out what I realized long ago – a digital backlist will keep on giving for the rest of an author’s life, as fans discover and then decide to read all of the books. And he mentions price – lots of people are pricing themselves out of the market because they don’t want to “give away” their work. Just do the math. 10x the fans at 2.99 makes more money than 1x the fans at 12.99.
I could recap a bunch of wisdom here but hey, just read the article.