Name: Frankie Hogan
Book Title: Livin’: From the Amsterdam Red Light to the African Bush
Website/Blog Link: www.livintravelbook.com
Find out more on Amazon
You have your shit together. Writing is something you’ve always adored, and you get to realize that intensity. You sit at your desk during your daily writing time with a coffee or a whiskey, and you develop worlds. You give nuance and reality to characters. You build tension in your plot like a wailing drum crescendo. The magic you create on the page is what you live for. Once you have a finished product, you can’t wait to get it out into the wilds. The months and sometimes years it took to craft is well justified. This is your element. On to the next project. Except you can’t move on, because you chose to self-publish. Whoever the wise sage was who convinced you that writers need to self-publish today must have had a malt liquor habit. Especially if your passion is writing.
What that drunken monk forgot to tell you is that if you decide to venture into independent publishing, you are no longer a writer. You are a businessperson. Depending on your level of involvement, you are now a manager, agent, financier, scheduler, accountant, lawyer, designer, publicist, social media expert, blogger, shipper, interviewee, and public-appearance-maker. You think you have time to develop worlds in the next half year? If your answer is yes, you are shitting yourself. In self-publishing, money comes first. A project cost budget must be created to match your goals and show potential investors. Nothing hits enhancement-pill heights for investors as much as a well-thought-out business plan with backing financials. If you’re not a numbers guy or gal, you are already pulling hair off the top of your dome. You have to develop a pitch, practice it like a commercial actor, and line up meetings with likely targets. And this is just the beginning. Throw on your designer hat to design your book cover, interior format, any symbol or logo, website, social media pages, and blog. Are you counting the bullets in that gun yet? The time it takes to price your printing, production, and shipping costs can make 6 a.m. turn into happy hour. We haven’t even gotten into marketing and advertising. Fuck it. You know where this is going.
The truth is that going the other route of agent-hiring bridging to Manhattan publishing houses still takes considerable time. I chose indie publishing because I have a business background. I also want to keep a certain level of control over the project, and I don’t mind the time off from writing. I like to rekindle the blaze for the next writing project over time. It’s like dinner and dancing before sex. A steady buildup enhances the fulfillment. But if your reaction to that statement is “That’s bullshit,” consider yourself forewarned about self-publishing.