Why?...Why create your own
After years and years of submitting my stories to publisher after publisher and
receiving enough rejection letters to wallpaper the walls of my office, I grew
tired and frustrated. I would hear the same line over and over. We like your
work, but you are not known. "We don't have the budget to cover the costs of
bringing a "new" (I've been writing for over 20 years) writer to the market.
But, as soon as you get something published give us a call."
...."Yeah, right, buddy!....I'm
sure gonna do that. You bet!"
So I went on with my
life, raising my children, working in a job I hated for 20 more
years. All the while I would write new stories just to leave them on
the hard disk of several reincarnations of my "main" computer.
Then one wonderful day I decided
I had had enough. I retired from my own company, a commercial real estate
appraising firm, and once again dove head and shoulders into my "fun" writing.
This time I was going to be
smart about my approach to publishers. I would get an agent and he/she would
represent me.....Yeah....RIGHT!...43 rejection letters later, it suddenly dawns
on me..."It ain't gonna happen this way, genius."
So, being a very proactive kind
of guy, I put an ad on Craig's List for an illustrator....HOLEY MOLEY
GUACAMOLE!...70 applications later....I selected my illustrator....I paid him to
illustrate my books....a very expensive endeavor I assure you...Then, I needed
some way to show the world all my "wonderful and imaginative"
stories...Yeah...okay...So...I'm sitting at my desk staring at all my
fabulously, and very expensive, illustrated books and saying to myself...."Great
idea, Einstein!...So now what are you going to do?"
A ton of money later, I create a
website. But, being who I am...It isn't just a simple website to show off my
books in eBook form....NO!....Not me!..."Simple" is not in my nature. No. I
create company logos, have t-shirts and other "fun" products printed up (in
several colors), hook up shopping carts and sign up with drop shippers. I create
a corporation through my state's Secretary of State office, sign up with the
Department of Labor for unemployment insurance, the Department of the Treasury
for my tax id, my local city government for my sales tax license...Hey!...If
you're gonna do something.....Do it like you mean it!....Even if it buries
...So....There I am, staring out
from the hole that I have successfully dug for myself, and one issue continues
to nag me....I still don't have a way to put my books physically into the
So I start researching just how
to do this. I find that you have to copyright your books. So, I do that. Then I
discover that I need an ISBN number for the different types of books (ebooks,
paperback, hardback all have to have different ISBNs.)...So I order my block of
ISBNs. Then I discover that I have to have barcodes on the books....So...I order
my barcodes....Then I find out that I, as a self-publisher, need to have an SAN
number which identifies me to wholesalers, distributors and retailers....Sooooo,
okay...I get that. Now I have to print the book.....I research all sorts of
printers all over the country before I find one that doesn't require one of my
kidneys as down payment.....WOW!....Is that one tough task...THEN....I have to
work on distribution. Writing up my ads, driving around to bookstores,
contacting Barnes and Noble, Amazon.com, and the others.....Can I tell you
now?....You REALLY have to want to get your books published if you go
When it is all said and done, I
have learned a great deal, and I have books ready for the marketplace....Hey...I
just described the work of a publisher!....So...If I did the work then I MUST BE
And there you have it!....Any
Keeping a Smile,