Archive for February, 2010

Why I’m Self-Publishing

Posted in Writing on February 20, 2010 by oneoveralpha

If everything goes as planned, in a few months I’ll be the proud author of the self-published collection of flash fiction, A Man of Few Words. I’ve been working on the collection off and on for a couple years, but I really worked on it last year to get it ready. Two weeks ago I sent out a mass email to friends asking for people to read my rough draft looking for typos and stuff like that. I gave them not quite two months to read through it and get back to me. I figured I would use that time to figure out the self-publishing bit. I’m using CreateSpace and I have to say it’s pretty easy, although there are a few things that bug me a little. But I think my problems are just unfamiliarity with the system; I’m betting that once you go through it once or twice it makes perfect sense. Anyway, I think I’m about as far along as I can go without having the final, final draft. Now, I won’t start on the final, final draft until I hear back from my friends, which means I have about a month where there isn’t much I can do on my book. Except trying to get the word out. So in the coming weeks I’ll probably put together a few blogs dealing with my experience.

So, to be begin. Why am I self-publishing? Because I probably couldn’t get them published any other way. As I said it is a collection of fifty flash fiction stories. Now I have had a few stories published, but never in a big name magazine. I don’t have a novel to my name, or big awards. (The one award I did win – for my first professionally published story – I think only ran two or three times before fading away to obscurity.) Why would a professional publisher publish my package of pithy prose? Seriously? I don’t believe myself to be the next Hemingway or O. Henry. I see my stories as the type that would be published after an author has several novels out as a collection of their “early work.” So why don’t I get my ass moving and get a couple novels out? It’s a bitch. Meanwhile, I have all these stories taking up space in my filing cabinet. Wouldn’t it be nice if I could do something with them?

And I’m not ruling out professional publishers for my novels for when I do finish them. In fact, I see this book (as well as a few others I’m planning on self-publishing) as helping me work up to the professional level. One – I’m learning what it takes to put a book together. From what I’ve learned during the process of getting A Man of Few Words together, I’m planning on doing things a little differently on my next books. (I’ve already started putting together stuff for my next three books: two story collections and a poetry chapbook. I’m working on them together and hope to have them out all next year.) Two – Hopefully, as more people are exposed to my writing, I’ll start gathering a following. Having a group of people who will be excited when I announce “My next book will be a novel published by X” will make my negotiations with X a little smoother. And Three- Speaking of X, over the years I’ve heard several stories of the publishing world by various authors. The one general idea that has come across is, if two authors go to a publisher and the first goes, “Here is the great American novel,” and dumps a manuscript on the desk while the second goes, “Here is an okay novel, and here is my plan on how to sell it,” the publisher will mostly likely go with the second author. Publishers are in the business of selling books and anything the author does to help that along is looked upon favorably. By self-publishing these books, I’ll be giving my marketing a test drive.

In a few years when I finish my novel None of Them Knew the Color of the Sky and I start looking for a publisher, I won’t be like countless others who just show up with a manuscript and a dream. I’ll be the one going, “Here’s my okay novel, and with my experiences from my self-published books, this is my plan for selling it.”

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Number One Reason I Dislike My Job

Posted in Odds, Writing on February 17, 2010 by oneoveralpha

It really screws up my day.

I’m mostly nocturnal. I say mostly because I have a saying about “stay awake until you’re tired, then sleep until you wake up.” I’m not a “free spirit” but I do have a wide independence streak that doesn’t like to be chained to a 24 hour cycle. The idea of “You HAVE to be HERE at this time, EVERYDAY” does not appeal to me.

Now, the reason I’m bringing this up in my writing blog, is because I feel this “Gainful Employment Dragon” gets in my way of writing. For example, I have not slept that well for the past few nights. I was tired at work and considered going to bed extra early in the futile attempt to “make up” for the lost sleep. I say futile, because countless times before I’ve gotten little sleep, been exhausted at work, but then have waken up in the evening to be wide awake at midnight. Tonight about 10:30 I told myself I should just take a shower and go to bed. I turned off my computer, and then sat there for a few minutes feeling miserable. There were so many things I wanted to do. Work on the formatting of my book, type up some blogs, read a bit, go for a relaxing walk, work on some stories, etc. I’m getting really tired of this “Damned if I do/damned if I don’t” choice: do I stay up writing only to be exhausted at work tomorrow, or do I go to bed and then beat myself up because I didn’t get as much writing work done as I wanted to?

Before you say I should do my writing earlier in the day, well I do get some done earlier in the day (even at work), but I get a rush of energy and odd ideas in the late evening, part of the reason I have trouble going to bed early. As I type this it’s 12:10 AM and I’m wide awake and the only problem I’m having is that I want to take this in six different directions. It’s now 12:13 AM, and after deleting the last sentence I wrote, I’ve decided to keep this simple and just end it here. For now.

January Newsletter

Posted in Newsletter on February 1, 2010 by oneoveralpha

See what I did in January.

http://www.oneoveralpha.com/Newsletter.htm#Jan10

I should have a lot more to say next month.

Enjoy,
Steve

Flash Fiction Magazine

Daily Flash Fiction Stories

Defusing Chaos

Because chaos doesn't sort itself out.

SFoxWriting.com

Something For Everyone's Needs

Mr, Mr.

Travel wildly. Dream deeply. live daringly.

Bipolar Disorder Diagnosis

Best Differential Diagnosis Book

Stop. Focus. Over.

Silence is violence.

David Gaughran

Let's Get Digital

Eye-Dancers

A site devoted to the Young Adult sci-fi/fantasy novel The Eye-Dancers

ssteinwriting

Author of New Adult and Contemporary Writing

The Evolution of Eloquence

Improving the English language one letter at a time

Book Hub, Inc.

The Total Book Experience

Twenty Somethings

Stories, poems, and things about things.

Read it to absorb my awesomeness

And you will become...awesome

Daily (w)rite

A DAILY RITUAL OF WRITING

- tony.espino -

a human. for now.

On the Homefront

Reflections on life: the funny, poignant, serious and quirky