Friday, March 23, 2012

Indie publishing follow up: Coming up for air

In Taking the Plunge on December 7, 2011 I discussed my decision to start a micropress to publish some of my own fiction as well as the work of a few other authors. The initial plan was to launch in December 2011, but since I had a file full of books about the process to read, covers to design and execute, formatting to learn and intricacies of Smashwords/Kindle etc. to explore, I figured a more reasonable time frame would be January.

Stuff kept happening, though, and I pushed my self-imposed deadline further and further away. I vacillated with decisions: publish through Smashwords or go straight to Kindle and take advantage of the KDP Select programme? Do the formatting and covers myself or shell out some cash for these services? Most unexpected of all was my own resistance to taking this big step. I am grateful to Vaughn T. Stanford, author of the first three stories in my lineup, for his patience as I responded to his many enquiries as to when the venture would get off the ground with just one word: "Soon."

Vaughn had planned to make February 19 a double celebration: my birthday and the launch of the press. As we sat in a restaurant on the water enjoying my birthday lunch and discussing the project, I offered up another "Soon". His response was, "Are you afraid?" I could not even summon indignation that he should ask me, the great adventurer (snigger), about... fear. At that moment I resolved to have the first book live on Kindle in time for his birthday, March 6. I was inundated with other work but I spent most of the evening and night of March 6 formatting, writing descriptions, tags and the lot, and at 2AM I finally put the book to bed. I watched the status go from 'In review' to 'Publishing' and finally to 'Live'. Two to Tangle had been born, with The Letter and Desire following hot on its heels. Wordtryst Press was (finally) up and running.

I cannot begin to describe the euphoria that hit me once I completed that first crucial step. Next in line are my second romance novel Café Noir, an erotic short story by Nyx and a short story by Nnande Aku, the pen name I've decided to use for some of my non-romance genre fiction. Once those covers are ready I'll click that 'publish' button - and then the journey will really begin.


Charles Gramlich said...

I suspect I'll end up trying a little bit of everything when it comes to this self-publishing thing.

Cool about Wordtryst Press. Great name btw.

Liane Spicer said...

Thank you, Charles. My five year old blog is called Wordtryst, so I didn't have to look too far for a name for the press.

I'll be trying a little of this and a little of that too to try and find the 'sweet spot', to use David Gaughran's terminology. Wonderful to be able to focus elsewhere than on the circus that my traditional publisher has become. :-/

KeVin K. said...

As you may know, Kvaad Press has lain dormant for about six months now. I've decided to focus on traditional markets with my short fiction -- since that field is still healthy -- and I don't have any completed novels to put up. (Soon.)
But I'm glad to see you're in business.
Well done.

Liane Spicer said...

KeVin, thank you for leading the way and pointing me in the direction of Rusch and Wesley Smith. And to Kaz for sending me David Gaughran's indie opus Let's Get Digital. And all the other pioneers who share their experience so generously. I owe y'all.

Best of luck with the short fiction. I'm still looking forward to reading that CC project of yours.

Lynn Emery said...

Work it, own it!!!

Liane Spicer said...

Thank you, Lynn. You're one of the authors who got me from the "Never!" stage to the point of considering it tentatively and then growing enthusiastic about it.

Jewel Amethyst said...

Liane, I think I need a little of your bravery in taking that plunge. Congratulations and I hope you do excellently with Wordtryst press. They say necessity is the mother of invention, you've proven that it is also the mother of creativity. Good luck.

Liane Spicer said...

Thank you, Jewel. I'm enjoying learning about this brave new publishing world and excited to be a part of it. I've begun to test the waters with Vaughn's stories. Now to get mine up there... :D