Going Indie

Friday Jenny talked about her writing path changing, going another direction. Today I’m going to talk about my publishing taking a different direction.

This past Spring a publishing company expressed interest in helping me hybrid publish my YA contemporary novel, Knee High Lies. Due to some unforeseen issues, they have had to back out of finishing the project. So, I’m going Indie.

That means that I’m finalizing the edits on my own, not an impossible hurdle as my editor Sarah, along with her line editor Josh, did an amazing job. I owe them a huge thank you for helping polish my story and bringing it to a level above what I could have ever done. Thank you to Ben Wolf who is helping to make this transition as easy as possible.

linda-fulkerson-300x300The next real hurdle is finding a cover image that will work. I have enlisted the help of Linda Fulkerson and her company DLF Digital Services to help with the cover and formatting my book for publication. I know she’ll do an amazing job, IF I can ever settle on an image.

Which brings me to what I’m doing now. I have searched pages and pages of images on the stock photo site but so far have not come up with an image that completely fits what I have in mind, though there are several that might work. So, I’ve asked a photographer friend to help me bring the image in my mind into reality. I have a model, now I have to find a place and create a summer scene in these winter months. Ha! I might need a miracle.

I’ll be putting together a street team soon and navigating my way through marketing the book. street-teamThis is as exciting as it is terrifying for me to undertake. But, I’ve had some great examples that have gone before me. With the help of friends I know I will succeed in getting my book published by the summer of 2017.

I’ll begin documenting my journey, do a cover reveal when we finally have an image, and share dates when they become available on my personal website at dawnfordauthor.com. So far I haven’t had much to share. I’m looking forward to actually having something noteworthy to talk about.

Prayers are coveted. May God bless this journey.

A Long and Winding Road

My first job wasn’t all that exciting.  Neither were any of the other jobs that came after it.  I worked in fast food, waited tables, did phone support, and helped to manage women’s clothing stores and business offices.  I was good at whatever I chose to do, but it never felt right.

At least, not until I sold the first article. It was in 1990 or 1991, and it was a short little piece about caring for Alzheimer’s patients. I was paid a whopping $25 for that piece, and at the time, it seemed like a dream come true. I was a paid writer. PAID! I couldn’t believe it.

Unfortunately, that was a false start. After that one little piece, it took me another few years to land another one. During that time I spent a little time in college, helped my husband with a floral design business that we started, and worked for 6 horrible months in a nursing home (hence the reason I’m an author and not a nurse).

I wrote a lot. I submitted a lot. I got rejected a lot. Then one day it was like someone switched on the publishing machine.  Suddenly, I was getting yeses left and right.  Almost more work than I could keep up with.  I don’t know if I just figured out the formula, if I had finally paid enough dues to start seeing some return, of if something clicked in my own brain that allowed me to tap into the mysterious stream of conscious that editors seem to have with successful writers, but something happened. And I was a writer.

Well, truthfully, I’d always been a writer.  But I never come to anything through a direct line. I had to go the traditional route a little while – working a “real” job and “playing” at being a writer in my spare time – before I realized that no one has the right to tell me what I can and cannot do or be with my own life.

Still, sometimes the longer journey can be revealing.  There are amazing things to see and do and people to meet along the way. And the shortest distance from writing to being a paid writer would have bypassed all those experiences. I would never have met a music teacher who loved her job and her music so much that she would recognize a student from years past even when she’d forgotten who her own children were.

I would never have learned to create flower designs, what indicates that gas logs are improperly installed, or how to fix a copier. I would not have understood that with a few sneaky tricks it’s possible to embezzle more than a million dollars from a company, nor that said embezzling is nearly always discovered (a no, that wasn’t me, I was just a witness…honest).

There are a few thousand additional experiences that I would never have had if I had come straight to writing and been successful from my very first submission. I also would not have developed a work ethic that keeps me in front of the computer until the wee hours of the morning to meet a deadline.  I would not have developed an understanding of the way that business works. And I wouldn’t have learned that the only way to like company policy is when you’re the one making them.

So, do I regret flipping burgers for that first job, or any of the other tasks I’ve performed or functions I’ve filled? Not a single one of them.  Every experience, every job, every task, and every person on that journey was in my path for a reason. Now it’s my job to figure out how to best use those to entertain and inform other people.