Kindle is celebrating its 10th anniversary.
Nov 1st was my 6th anniversary as an indie author.
*Does Math* Yep, I’m a “veteran” in this indie publishing game.
When I look back, it’s fantastic luck that I decided to become a writer when the indie game was just spooling up. If I’d been forced to go the traditional route, even if I’d been wildly successful, there’s no way I would have 33+ novels across 2 pennames and 3 languages out in the world today. Zero chance of that because traditional publishing just doesn’t work on those timescales.
When I launched that first indie book (Open Minds), I planned to publish a trilogy and hoped to break even in six months (it broke even in 2). I had a five year plan to replace a part-time engineering salary so I could write full-time. That goal was met in the first year. My goal to fund college for 3 boys was met in Year 4. I set another ambitious 5 year goal for Penname in 2015… I should meet that in early 2018.
I’m still stunned any of this is possible.
And while making a living at writing is what makes writing *possible* it’s nowhere near what makes it *worthwhile*. That comes from 1 – the creative expression that’s been unleashed inside me, literally changing who I am, and 2 – the connection I’ve made with readers.
Readers are really *everything* for me. I realized that with a new level of clarity just last month as I was pondering what the *next* five year goal should be.
From my very first Mission Statement as a writer, crafted even before that first small-press book was published in 2010: “To create a body of work, including novels and short stories, that reaches a large number of readers.”
I could say “Mission Accomplished” but honestly?
I’m just getting started.