Yo, EJ! Where You Been?!
Well, I moved from Texas to California last month--so I've been several places recently! But now I'm settled and resuming life as a West Coaster.
As far as blogging goes, because of the move I totally botched the Google Reader-ocalypse. I didn't adopt a new system in time to transition my reader list over. So in short, I lost everything and have been flying blind the last couple of weeks. But I'm catching up. (Some of you will have seen me around more lately... which may or may not be a good thing. :)
I've got a new reader thing going in my web browser, but I'm having to rebuild my blog list from ground zero. Which really isn't a bad thing in theory. My old list was beyond unmanageable. I can't tell you how many blogs I had on there that no longer existed.
Anywho, please be patient with me. I'm finding most of my old favorites by stalking the comments of other blogs and adding y'all back that way. Until then, if you haven't commented here in a few weeks, please do just say hi as I'm adding everyone who comments here (it's the easiest way to find you).
I'm the world's worst about reading blogs on my phone, etc. and not getting to the comments, so that last bit was for my fellow lurkers. :)
What Is New Adult Literature? Or Maybe, What Is It Not?
Yes, yes... I'm on that old box again. :) You all know I'm keen on New Adult stuff, and most of you know I'm a regular contributor over at the New Adult Alley Blog. Well, this week I did up a fun list of WHAT NEW ADULT LIT ISN'T.
Definitely hop over for a little NA FYI and say hello if you have a chance!
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When: Post on the second Wednesday of the month (starting 1/9/2013)
What: Write anything indie related: something that will inspire or help a fellow indie; something that celebrates a release or a milestone; something that talks about the ups and downs, joys and heartaches of Being Indie.
Click: The banner above to learn more and join the fun!
Using Your Space
To paraphrase the Pauli exclusion quantum mechanical principal a tad: No two objects may occupy the same space.
Now, I can promise you that's the last time I'll bring quantum physics into this blog to illustrate a point (well, at least the last time I'll do it in this post). Because frankly, I'm not that damned smart. :)
However, it DOES say something very important with regards to what this whole independent author thing is all about: Identity and owning your space.
Look, attempting to be an author is a scary proposition on any level. It's the psychological equivalent of climbing up on a rock in the middle of a turbulent sea and daring the waves not to sweep you away.
That's true for publishing traditionally, independently, freelancing--you name it.
Your voice will be one of thousands--hundreds of thousands--and the chances of it being heard over the crying gulls and churning water aren't great. But not being heard isn't the really terrifying part.
The thing that'll cause you to dampen your favorite Superman onsie is the thought that someone WILL actually hear you. That you'll get some attention and be found not worthy, then they'll cast you back into the cold depths with all the other fish.
Well I'm here to tell you, fears aside, you belong on that rock. In fact, the laws of the Universe demand that you occupy your space on that rock, because no one else can. It's all yours, baby!
The simple truth is this: You have a right to tell stories and ask other people to read them. They also have a right not to read them--always, always remember that!
Indeed, some of them will actively look for reasons to invoke that right. Among those reasons: Not the right genre. Not the right name on the cover. Not the right cover. Not enough experience. Not jumping through the right hoops. Not the right training. Not the right person to ask them to read it. And so on...
Nonetheless, you still have a right to put it out there, to own your space and do with it what you want. (NOTE: This is not a SHOULD YOU discussion. The next time we spend a week together on a beach in the Bahamas we can have that conversation--whilst sipping fruity drinks, of course.)
There's been too dang much focus on the WHO in publishing for too long. It's the WHEN, WHAT, HOW, and WHY we should be figuring out.
Being an independent author has allowed me to do that for myself. Just like in any great enterprise, there are steps to learn and methods to develop. I've had to unlearn a few things, too. (Like: Readers read the things they love over-and-over. If they love vampire stories, they don't really care if there've been 400 vampire stories published this year, they'll happily read another as long as it's done well. Who knew?)
But just knowing that I had the right to consider myself a professional--and then go about learning how to be one on my own terms--was totally liberating.
Scary? Yes. Time consuming? Yes. Hard? Some days, very. But liberating.
So I'll leave you with this: No matter what kind of author you want to be, recognize that the space is already yours. You just have to decide how you want to use it.