Tuesday, September 3, 2013


So, here's where I'm at:

A few years ago, I was sitting around at my dad's house in the hills, taking poke shots at different writing projects I had going, when I randomly broke down and started writing a short story about three very terrible fantasy heroes. It's a story I had wanted to write for a long time in some form. I had been outlining characters and random plot elements for several months by then, but the character cast before that night I actually started writing had been somewhere around five, not three.

The amount of characters I would've had to juggle right off the bat had been largely what kept me from writing. I had wanted to wring a novel out of it, after all, and the process for introducing the characters alone would have represented a decent chunk of writing. And the biggest problem was: I just didn't like any of them very much. I couldn't imagine spending close to a year with these five guys and girls. Sometimes, I suppose, a writer just has to suck it up and write according to the big picture, but I didn't have that luxury.

The short story that resulted from that idea is what got me going, and the Realm of Shiloft was created out of that.


Last year, I revisited those three characters - this rogue, wizard, and ranger - and cranked out another short story, getting to know them a little better in the process. (Both of these stories are available on my tumblr if you have any kind of interest!) By then, I loved these characters so much, I started up another story. It was just supposed to be 5000 words; I wanted it to be eligible for a contest at the time. But I just kept going, and right now I'm sitting on a novella that's nearly 50,000 words long, edited and ready to go. Within the next week or so, I'll be publishing it through Amazon's Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) service.

This whole process was something entirely new to me. I've written other novels in the past (when I didn't feel the need to line-edit my work after every chapter), but they never went anywhere after I was finished. My friends would read them, and I'd get plenty of feedback, but when it came to querying agents, I never had any luck. Mostly because of my arrogance at the time. There were some things I was never willing to compromise on, and I was very nervous about "selling myself."

But now we're living in an age where I can post a book up on a site like Amazon and cut the middleman out altogether. Now, this comes with some severe drawbacks, of course. Just because I publish something, doesn't mean it'll sell. And just because I worked hard on something, doesn't mean it'll be successful. Them's the breaks of independent publishing. You're a drop of water in a boundless ocean.

Still! It's not hopeless, certainly. There have been plenty of people who have been able to stand out and really get their stories out there, either by offering an introduction for free or really taking to social media to get word out. Hard to believe that such a large chunk of a bestseller like Wool is absolutely free, right? You'd think he'd want to capitalize on his success in any way he could. But that's how this deal works, and he absolutely made the right decision - and is still making it.

Now, I'm not up-to-date on everything, but this isn't my first finished work, so I have a little experience when it comes to these things: concerning both the Agent Route and the Self-publishing Route. I hope that my posts here will at least be informative, and I'll also be chronicling my own experience as I get ready to self-publish my first ebook. If I have helped in any little way, then this blog will not have been made in vain!

Also, I'm a pretty big fan of Star Wars, so stuff concerning that might pop up on here every now and then. I really can't help myself.