Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Guest Post: Author Brian Meeks - Self-Publishing Is Not As Scary as One Might Think

I was contacted by a friend's mother, when she heard I had been self-publishing my books. Here is my response and the main point is that there are lots of people who have done it, and most of us, are willing to help. Also, it isn't as scary as one might think.


I do remember you. I would be delighted to tell you all about publishing and help you get your work up on Kindle. It is getting late now, so I will call you tomorrow. Until then, let me mention a few things I've learned.

Building up an audience is a slow process. That is okay, though, as the more readers one finds, the more they tell people. I mean, that is how you found me, because of your daughter. Living in the Social Media Age has provided an opportunity for all. It doesn't mean that everyone will be successful. I just mean that everyone is given a shot. Those who work hard and write well will have a greater chance than those who talk about writing, and then when they do write, do it poorly.

T.S. Elliot once mused, "Some editors are failed writers, but so are most writers."

Writing is a joy, but that joy pales in comparison to having one's writing read. I've seen it written that it takes 10 years to become an "Overnight" success as a writer. I don't know if this is true or not, but I've been writing for just over two years, completed three novels and one non-fiction book. I'm hardly a success, yet, but I am getting sales every single day. To me, that is some measure of success. One month ago, I was getting a sale or two per week. In a year, who knows.

The point is that I will keep writing, continue to self-publish, and I will make sure to build my audience every day, as best I can.

As for the publishing end, I have this to say. Most people who want to self-publish and don't are simply unable to comprehend what is involved, not that it is difficult, but that it is so foreign. If one buys a new piece of software and installs it on their computer, they will find that c and v are used for copy and paste, because it is universal. They are familiar with which buttons to choose to make it do what they want, but publishing is unlike anything tried before, there isn't a familiarity that helps one get over the fear.

That is why it is nice to have someone who will answer your questions. I didn't have anyone, but that was okay, as I am naturally predisposed to figuring stuff out on my own. I have learned what to do and I'll be glad to share it.

Until tomorrow,



Brian Meeks is the author of the Henry Wood Detective series and the recently released, Two Decades and Counting: The Wins, The Streak, The Hawkeyes Thru the Eyes of Roy Marble. He had a publisher for the 1st book in the Henry Wood series, but decided to self-publish the Roy Mable book, as he was interested in learning what was involved. He found it enjoyable and the success of the launch has changed his plans for the upcoming release of the second and third books in the Henry Wood series. With the exception of Two Decades, he has written all of his novels as serials on his blog, http://extremelyaverage.com and they can be found there, warts and all. Brian hires an editor before publishing and goes to great lengths to produce a quality product, but he doesn't mind people seeing how he writes during the initial draft. "It is motivating to write as a serial and I don't want to let anything get in the way of telling the story."

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