World's Oldest Fledgling

The blog of Stephanie Wardrop, Y A Author

Three Debs Reflect

on December 12, 2013

While we didn’t actually get to dress like this and practice our curtsies, some of the ladies of Indie Ignites became Author Debutantes in 2013. We published our first books and for the first time could call ourselves AUTHORS. So as this auspicious year comes to a close, I thought it would be fun to ask some of my fellow Indie Debs to talk about the experience of launching yourself into the world as a writer. Here’s what they had to say, below, but, first, MEET OUR DEBS

JC EMERY released her first novel,

 which is also the first in a series (MEN WITH BADGES). She self-published this as well as her debut novels in the BAYONET SCARS series. It’s been a very productive year for JC!

LISA BASSO also debuted with the first in a series; the novel

 kicks off the trilogy THE ANGEL SIGHT SERIES. She’s published with Swoon Romance.

I, STEPHANIE WARDROP, brought out the first three in a series of YA e-novellas based on Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. The first installment was

published by Swoon. The last installment releases in January of 2014.

RELEASE WEEK AND BEYOND

I spent so much time worrying about the writing that I didn’t really put much thought into what it would be like when the book actually came out (I was just so relieved that it did!). Lisa Basso and I both had blog tours, so we were in the enviable but chaotic position of having to write twenty-plus completely fabulous blog posts in a few weeks. “It was crazy,” Lisa says. “I didn’t have much time to celebrate [that first week, but after that], man was that sweet.”  JC had to figure out how to market her book on her own (and let me tell you, she has gotten very good at it), so her release week was “quiet.”

But once the book was out and people were actually reading it (squeeeee!), things started to happen. For me, people I hadn’t been in contact with for years looked me up on Facebook and everyone was amazingly proud of me and very sweet about congratulating me.  Publishing a book is a big deal to people and it’s really gratifying to have had so many people happy for me.  I also suddenly got to meet (virtually) a whole group of other writers and wonderful bloggers.  Lisa agrees, saying. “I’ve gotten to know so many amazing bloggers, authors, and book lovers I never would have had the pleasure of meeting otherwise. Including the amazing ladies of Indie Ignites.” Right back at ya, Lisa!

JC had a few more twists and turns in her year-long journey. I’ll let her tell it to you straight, but if you go to Amazon or any other site selling books, you’ll see it has a happy ending: Through a strange twist of events, my first book ended up being free for five

months (which I talk about here). It was (in my opinion) a really good thing

for my career. It let people know that I’m here, but it also meant that I was

giving away my work for several months. Because of a shoestring budget, I

wasn’t able to do certain things until my fourth book (Ride, which debuted

October 25th

months for me to consider myself a published author. I kept making excuses

for how it wasn’t really real yet. I even made my mom wait until I was

enough of a success to tell my family. I just didn’t want to fail in front of them,

and since I had very low expectations, I’ve been pleasantly surprised with

what I’ve been able to do.

) like a formal blog tour, cover reveal, etc. It actually took several

BEST PART OF BECOMING A PUBLISHED AUTHOR FOR THE FIRST TIME

JC said “I felt brave. A lot of people thought I shouldn’t publish at all, let alone self-publish . . . I’ve always wanted to be my own boss, and I didn’t know that I’d ever be able to make enough money off of a business to truly work for myself . . . but for now I can say that I made my dreams come true in 2013.”

For Lisa, the best part was, “hands down, being contacted by a reader who loved my book. There’s nothing like it.”

 

WHAT WOULD YOU DO DIFFERENTLY NOW IF YOU COULD?

It seems that we’d do it all over again if we had the chance.  JC said “Were there things I could have done better? Absolutely. I made mistakes—

big mistakes—but I wouldn’t want to have done a single thing differently. For

the first time in my life I showed myself how truly capable I am. I’ve worked

harder, taken more risks, and have ventured into areas I didn’t know possible

this year. 2013 has been the best year ever and I wouldn’t change a single

thing.”

Lisa had some good advice for newbie authors that I’ll share verbatim: “If I could do anything differently, I would keep a journal of the things that came up after I signed

my contract. I’d log how many hours I wrote, edited, and promoted each day.” Especially if you are trying to figure out if you can really “afford” to do this, even if you are not planning on quitting your day job any time soon, it’s probably a good idea to keep track of all the hours you put into everything in addition to the writing, the marketing, blogging, interviewing, and, with a little luck, red carpet-walking when you sell your book to Hollywood. Hey, ’tis the season to dream big! And this past year, many of our dreams have already come true.

Buy Marital Bitch at  http://www.amazon.com/Marital-Bitch-Men-Badges-ebook/dp/B00B687AX0/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1371196872&sr=1-2A Shimmer of Angels at http://www.amazon.com/Shimmer-Angels-Angel-Sight-Series/dp/0985029439/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1386208596&sr=8-1&keywords=a+shimmer+of+angels, and the Snark and Circumstance series at  http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_0_13?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=snark+and+circumstance&sprefix=snark+and+cir%2Caps%2C245  . They make excellent holiday gifts :).

This was originally posted on the Indie Ignites blog.

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