Thursday, August 11, 2011

YA Indie Carnival!

Welcome to The Shootin' Gallery and the fifth post in the YA Indie Carnival. The carnival is designed for authors, readers and reviewers of YA Indie books. Each Friday this team of YA Indies will post on a common theme.

Today's post theme is, What surprised me the most about going Indie?

Well, let see, to be entirely honest I think just about everything about becoming an Indie author, fan, reviewer, blogger surprised me. For months I sat in front of my computer writing query letters to agents and when I needed a break I would head over to my already enormous and ever growing pile of books stacked in the corner of my bedroom.

So, one day my hubster says, "Hey Amy, why don't you just self publish and buy yourself a Kindle?" As dim as I was at the time I flashed him the 'duh' look and continued my usual repetitive and entirely unproductive task of querying. As the months passed the routine grew more tiresome (which only totaled six months in all, I'm not very patient) and so the next time the hubs says, "Hey Amy, why don't you..."

I cut him off and said, "OK, I give in. How do I do this?" ...and so it began.

Mind you, I was still not sold on the ereader contraption idea (yes, I can be very dense sometimes), but I agreed to give Lulupress a shot and printed my first copy of Soul Quest in paperback. The book was listed on the Lulu site and before I knew it I had a dozen sales (all family and friends)... and then nothing.

I became frustrated and began to wonder what I could do to advertise. I quickly learned advertising is very expensive and couldn't rationalize spending a bunch of money on something with little chance of success when I had bills to pay, mouths to feed, bodies to cloth... you get the jist of it, right?

So again, my hubby says, "Kindle..." and I finally caved. We went out the next day and purchased a Kindle and I fell in love with the amazing thing. Before I knew it I was joining Kindle forums and blog hopping and discovery hundreds of books by authors I'd never heard of. They were selling their books for just .99 (miraculous sounding music with cherubs singing in the background)! I was like, holy smokes, I've hit the jack pot! Not only did I download and begin reading these books but I found that I enjoyed them every bit as much as the NY Times Bestsellers I had been purchasing at Books A Million for anywhere from $17 to $22 a pop! The first indie series I read was Amanda Hocking's Trylle Trilogy. Immediately I was hooked.

So, now can you guess what hubby said next? You got it, he says, "Hey Amy, why don't you publish YOUR book as an ebook on Amazon?" Obviously, I finally came to my senses and did just that. It wasn't an easy process (surprise number 2). Neither of us knew anything about file conversion, formatting, blah, blah, blah. It's still a challenge but I'm getting better at it the more experience I have with it.

From there I started my blog and website. It sounds like the end of the story here but it is really just the beginning. The third surprise was the networking groups and friendships I have found in this adventure (including the wonderful ladies whose blogs are listed below). As far as being able to share my love of books over the years I have mostly been limited to my mother. I have a few friends and co - workers who have read Twilight but beyond that my primary source of face to face book discussions has been with my teenage high school students. I can't tell you what a blessing it has been to share my love of the paranormal and young adult fantasy fiction with other adults. For the first time in my life I don't feel quite so 'abnormal' in my love of reading and preference of reading genre.

In closing I will say that I am grateful for this incredible and quickly emerging new trend in the publishing industry. It has allowed me to realize a dream I thought would never take place.

Before you head off to the next booth in the carnival please don't forget about...

The Guardians of Souls Blog Tour August 25th - 31st.

The Guardians of Souls, Book Two in The Soul Quest Trilogy. It is available on Amazon NOW!

Carnival of fun!

The Ferris Wheel

Dani Snell: An awesome reviewer.

The Rockin' Roller Coaster

Patti Larsen: Author of The Ghost Boy of MacKenzie House, and The Diamond City Trilogy.

The Kissing Booth

Courtney Cole: Author of Every Last Kiss, Fated, Princess, and Guardian. Also a contributing author in The Glassheart Chronicles.

Cotton Candy Corner

Wren Emerson: Author of I Wish and a contributing author in the upcoming anthology that I am participating in (The Glassheart Chronicles).

The Fun House

Nicole Williams: An indie author of paranormal fiction. Her titles include: Eternal Eden, and the upcoming Fallen Eden. She is also participating in the Glassheart Chronicles. Here is the link to my review on Goodreads.

The Dunking Booth

Fisher Amelie: Author of The Understorey, as well as a contributing author in The Glassheart Chronicles.

The Carousel
Laura Elliott: Author of the recently released Winnemucca!

The Haunted Castle

Rachel Coles: Author of Diary of a Duct Tape Zombie, Whistles, Beergarden, Plagues, Bees of St. John, and Mushrooms.


T.R. Graves: Author of Warriors of the Cross.

The Face Painting Booth

Cydni Tefft: Author of Between

The Fortune Teller
P.J. Hoover: Author of Solstice
Congrats to P. J. for her recent
book trailer award for Solstice!

Popcorn and Caramel Apples!
Alicia McCalla: Author of Breaking

Pony Rides!
Heather Cashman: Author of Perception

Don't forget to make a comment and join my followers! I love hearing from from my old friends as much as I love making new friends!


  1. Hi - buzzed to discover yr blog via Cyndi Teffts. thank you for sharing your insight on the self-pub path. I launch my book in Dec and its a nervous (and exciting) prospect so Im always on the lookout for useful tips and info on others journeys.

  2. Thanks, Amy. I am having much the same experience and loving it--without all the querying. Cheers!

  3. LOL Amy, you have a very clever husband... :) So nice to have that kind of support!

  4. Lani - Thanks for popping in and good luck with your book!

    Heather - We're all in this together. We might as well have fun, right?

    Patti - My hubby is brilliant... and the best (my own personal Edward Cullen!).

  5. Amy, it's hard to pick the biggest surprise, there have been so many. But it is fabulous to have authors like you to share it with. And how fun that your hubby nudged you in the direction that was a perfect fit for you. Does he glow in the sunlight too?

  6. Laura - "Does he glow in the sunlight too?" - almost... (tee hee) :)

  7. No worries Amy. As a school librarian, I love reading YA lit too. There's a lot of us out there. YA books are really good reads.

  8. Thanks goodness for your supportive husband. I know what you mean about ebooks. I got a Nook and suddenly realized I didn't have to buy another shelf to store all my books.

  9. Alicia - I know we're out there but we're few and far between. Thank goodness for the exceptions!

    T. R. - I know, I think the Kindle can hold up to 3500 books or something crazy like that. Could you imagine having 3500 books piled in the corner of your bedroom? I think my poor hubby was imagining me cramming 3500 books into several corners of our home one day, ha!