Monday, September 3, 2012

It ain't all bad...

So, I have been on a bit of a soapbox these past few days. But that makes it seem like there is nothing good to say and everybody is evil...blah-de-fricking-blah. There are a lot of people doing good things out there. Take all these blogs for instance. Many of them are all about promoting the Indie scene...for those who do not do the whole blog thing (I just started this one a few months ago), they take a nice chunk of time to put together. That is why, if you find a few that you really the blogger a favor...make a post every so often so they know they are being visited by more than web-bots. Hit that +1 key (if you are a Google type) or share it on your Facebook page. This is a Six-Degrees-Of-Separation world. You never know who YOU might introduce to somebody that you like and follow.

That brings me to my next thing. A few names go on my Wall of Fame for being "help everybody" types. Now, first off, I must admit that I am not anywhere close to the league of these folks. I may do a nice thing every once in a while...but these people are nice ALL THE TIME. Fist, and I really don't care if you think I am biased, but my wife Denise is one of those people who will stop everything she is doing to help somebody. People toss out questions about getting their books formatted or how to get an ISBN, and she is there walking them through. Step by step. She has recently taken to BUYING books from several of the writers she talks to daily. Then she actually reads and posts reviews (good or bad). When people have questions about any aspect of getting their book in print, she offers up help. You would think that she spends all of her time promoting me...nope. In fact, sometimes I get lost in the shuffle. She is about helping EVERYBODY.

Then there is Billie Sue Mosiman. What can you say? Stoker noms, dozens of titles in print. She could sit in her ivory castle and look down on the mortals, but instead, she is there offering encouragement, giving advice when asked, and generally being a pleasant person. (Just don't cross her...or you may be sleeping with the fishes.)

And last, there is a group of individuals who shall remain nameless for a few reasons. But here is the story. Very recently, a member of a small group had one of their members go through a rough patch. Let's face it, politics aside...the economy is in the toilet and the regular folks are getting hammered. Long story short, the group joined forces, and everybody who could chipped in a few bucks on the individual's Paypal account. They didn't do it for any other reason than the fact that WE are in this together. While some people bang their drums and rant endlessly about making a change...this group didn't talk, they acted. Did I mention that all these individuals were in the Indie scene...none of them what you might consider "loaded" by any standard. It was just friends helping one of their own. Some Facebook groups make claims about how "close knit" they are...but this group doesn't have to say such things...they simply act.

And that brings me to a point I have touched on. I want to just take a minute to put some things straight. This is directed at the people out there taking advantage of the hopes and dreams of others. If you think that you provide a service to some neophyte soon-to-be-self-published author by "providing" a "service" that includes formatting their book and then "publishing" it for them using Createspace or some similar service, and you are charging them "Packages starting at $75" and throwing in such "extras" as "font type, title page... Are you getting a dirty feeling just reading that? Now, do I believe that there are some individuals who would rather not fuss with the details? Sure. But I also know people like Jeffrey Kosh who will get you up and running for a third of that price. All that other crap is like a car dealer agreeing to throw in the tires at no extra charge.

Now, I know I have mentioned cover art. And I want to do that topic justice, so I have to make sure that I have all my facts straight before I turn anybody into a human pinata. But if you have some information on that topic that you think is helpful, email me. (My email address is on the right hand side of this blog page if you are curious.)

Wednesday, I will be turning this over to Lori Lopez, so don't miss out. Also, that day I will be revealing some of the "prizes" I will be giving away for my 100th edition. And I apologize for how many times I put things in quotes during this episode. It just sort of happened. 


  1. I am a rank amateur at indie publishing. You are right about one thing: there are many snake oil salespeople posing as "indie service providers." Sometimes I shoot in the dark when I choose service providers. We all do until we learn those hard lessons.

    Part of me wants to whine that it sucks. The other side of me has figured out life is a learn-as-you-go proposition. You win some; you lose some...and you're best off just letting it go.

    One thing I will say, however, is that karma is a nasty, nasty thing when it swings back around.