All posts by NewEngland_Muse

I'm a traditionally and self published author. I write in the genre of children and YA at the moment but working my way up to adults. I'm a sports loving, photo taking gal who loves to sing/dance to my own enjoyment. I love to laugh even at myself. I am also owned by 8 birds and 2 hamsters, and yes they know it. :)

Have you always called yourself a writer?

When you began your writing career, was it hard to say that you were an author? It could be to oneself. Or it could be saying it out loud to other people.

I know for me, it was. My writing group had quite a few who thought like me. No matter how many times the group leader tried to convince us, it was not working. One day she wrote on the board a rule for the group. We were not allowed to say we were not authors/writers.

We laughed. Our group leader did not.

I felt unless I had something published, I had no right to make that claim. It turned out that others felt this way, and others still do.

And it was not until I became a freelance writer and published author did I make that claim to myself and the world.

And this is a shame. I know writers who write for pure pleasure and are OK if they never get published. They call themselves writers. I have a writer friend who will stop once her book is published. She is content with that prospect. She calls herself a writer.

Yet on the other side of the coin, I know authors who don’t have this issue. For them, they are writers from the get-go, and nothing will stop them from saying so.

Experiences in our lives mold what we think and do. What works for one does not work for the other.

I wish the singularity that binds authors together would be us all calling ourselves authors and saying it to others.

Is everything you write gold?: Ah, no

Not everything we write is good. Cleaning my office recently, I found manuscripts in various states of completion.

No matter how much I want these projects to make it to the end zone, these WIPs are not worthy. I should chuck them into the trashcan, yet I am unable.

Why do we hold on to these? Why does it feel we are giving a part of ourselves into the trash can?

It all started for me when I began writing. Each word was hard-earned. Removing sentences, paragraphs, and more was something I fought my critique group repeatedly.

One night, the group told me I needed to get rid of two complete chapters.

I looked at my friend Lisa. I remembered something she said. If she disagreed with them, she would nod and let it pass.

Taking a page out of her book, I nodded, knowing that there was no way I was getting rid of two whole chapters. My publisher agreed with me.

It takes quite a bit of time and effort to complete a manuscript. It does not always flow. We will go through many revisions before presenting it to a critique group. Issues we will fight against or for as what should stay or go.

To come across a WIP that I know isn’t going anywhere is not always easy to accept. To get rid of a manuscript, regardless of how long or short, is hard for me.

But I know there are at least two I will shred. I have no desire to work on these manuscripts, little time to do so, and frankly, they are crap.

Vanity Press: Is it right for you?

A local writer I know told me a bit ago that she went through a vanity press publisher. I made a face of disgust before I could stop myself. I asked if it worked. The reply was yes, and that is all that matters.

The definition of a vanity press is, in short: A vanity press, also known as a subsidy press, is a company that offers publishing services for a fee.

When I started looking for publishers, I had a few contact me. I declined, having researched various publishers before,

Even if I had the money, I could not honestly give it to a company for them to publish my book. I could do what they were offering on my own. I figured it would simply take longer. Also, I did not have the funds. If I had the money, I feel I would have declined, but I will never know. It is not easy getting a book published, let alone writing a book.

When it was my time, I researched the various ways to get my manuscript published. The research is free. A writer may find out what works better for them. It could be a vanity press. Check it out first before you fork over your hard earn money,

What they can charge you can include editing, reading fee, and book covers. If you are not inclined to do any of this or prefer not to do it, this could be the way to go. It does suit some authors who are happy with a vanity press.

All I am saying is to check it out first. It took you a lot of time to start and complete your book. You worked hard to get it finished. You want it in the best hands possible, wherever that might be.

Since it is a long road, vanity presses are around and will continue to bill authors large sums of money. Don’t bet the farm on this, especially if you can ill afford to.