Thursday, July 26, 2012

Scarlett's Guest, Reyna Hawk, Discusses the Unexpected Challenges of Becoming an Indie Author

            Despite the fact my first book was recently published and released; I have actually been writing for nearly twenty-five years. I had just about given up on ever becoming a published author; until I researched and learned about self-publishing. I can remember that day so well, I was beyond ecstatic to think my hopes and dreams were actually in reach. I wouldn't need to wait months for the release of my books. They would be released when I decided; my books would be exactly as I wanted them; and I wouldn't have to pay an agent to get it all done. However, I didn't expect some of the challenges I experienced along this journey.
            I knew some of the challenges I’d face as an Indie Author. Such as, all the self promotion that is required. There is so much time spent writing and answering emails, working up advertisements, making the rounds of the various social media sites, the list goes on and on. However, I didn't realize that many blog sites and book stores are not open to offering promotional spots to Indie Authors. I wasn't aware of the stigmatism attached to being an Indie Author. Many individuals think the books I write must not be any good because they're not backed by the bigger publishing houses or on the shelves at every bookstore in town.  That stung!  But, not everyone has been negative.  I have gotten such a warm welcome by many fellow authors, book reviewers and bloggers who have gone above and beyond in helping me get the word out there about my books. I am forever grateful to them.

I have the following words of wisdom for new Indie Authors:

  • do not expect to come right out of the gate on top making six figures a year,
  • plan to spend just as much time promoting as you do writing,
  • your family and friends may think writing is not a "real" job,
  • everyone you know may not be as proud of your accomplishment as you are,
  • no one else will toot your horn as loudly as you can yourself,
  • you are not just promoting your books, you're promoting yourself,

Remember, some day you may be a big name in the public eye; you surely don't want a comment, or picture, from Facebook to come back and haunt you. Be smart, be respectful, be creative, be tough skinned, and be the best!

These may be helpful links for Indie authors:

Check these links for information about self-publishing:

Reyna Hawk is a 44 year old mother of one son and grandmother to a beautiful 3 year old little girl. Born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio, Reyna has always loved writing and story-telling. Her passion for telling stories began at a very young age when she was making up stories to tell her school friends. Reyna has an Associate of Arts in Psychology and a Bachelor of Arts in Cultural Anthropology. Explore Reyna's work below.

Author Website 
Reyna on Facebook

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