<——(I was surprised too)
But…let’s back up. So, today I had a meeting with the president of a publishing house. How? Let’s just say when your future in-laws and your parents belong to a golf club, lots of connections can be made that way. And publishers like to golf.
Setting the scene: A gorgeous evening in British Columbia. Bright blue sky, blinding sun, ocean breeze, excellent wine…mosquitoes. The publisher asks me what my books are about, how they have been selling, the whole deal. Then she asks, “What are your long-term goals? Do you have any aspiration to be published by a publishing house?”
And I said…“No.”
And that was the truth. Our conversation continued and I did state that had I just one book to sell, then yes. Of course. And if a publisher was like, “here’s a lot of money” I’d be like, yeah…But I have a series and I think I’m doing quite well on my own. I explained my marketing strategies, where they were being sold, how many I’ve sold, my plans for the series in the future, the fan base, etc.
And to my surprise… she said I was doing the right thing. In her words, I was doing everything right. I am doing everything that a publishing house would be doing, reaching the same people in the same ways. The only difference is that yes, it would be easier for a writer to not worry about publishing (just worry about writing) and I would have clout. You know, the whole “I’m ACTUALLY published” clout that comes with the territory.
But then the publisher corrected me and says, you know what.. you HAVE clout. And you are published. So it’s self-published, so what? It’s out there. Your books look fine, it’s POD, you’re not losing any money on them. Your work obviously speaks for itself. You’re making money that you don’t have to split with an agent and a publisher. You’re reaching fans. I mean, it’s a slow going business that relies heavily on word of mouth and you’re getting there. Being published wouldn’t necessarily get you there any faster.
Besides, the moment you are published you pass up your control. You give up your rights to your book, the rights to your series…your characters (and this is coming from the publisher’s mouth). And I’m 3.5 books in…I can’t do that. I wouldn’t. And that’s why — at least with the Experiment in Terror Series — I really don’t need nor want a publisher. I’m not saying this to be stubborn or anything, it’s just the truth. If you had asked me that question six months ago and I would have said the opposite. But now, now that I’m living this career choice each day, I know what the deal is…being published WOULD BE EASIER (and awesome, of course!) but I’d be giving up a lot in exchange.
So that really was the extent of the meeting. Little ol’ me explaining all of my strategies and the publisher telling me I don’t need a publisher. I just need to be myself and keep going. The success will come, I’m a confident woman (her words) who knows an awful lot about what she’s doing (still her words) and that all I need to have is patience. And a bit of luck.
That said, she did take copies of my book that she’s sending to her literary agent friend in New York. Cuz…well, you never know