Monthly Archives: June 2014

Self Publishing vs. Indie Publishing

Most authors/writers use these terms interchangeably but they actually mean completely different things. If you don’t know, here are the differences and why some people confuse them:

Self Publishing

This means that you are doing it yourself. You’re the only person involved with your book, except for hiring editors or cover designers. Whether you do your own cover and formatting or hire someone, you are still self publishing.

For some people, there is still a stigma against this method of publication because since a writer can do it themselves, they might not have the skills to do it well.

Indie/Independent Publishing

When you’re an indie or independent author, that means you are publishing with a small press. You are still traditionally published! This is the biggest difference, because an indie author works with editors and cover designers of the publishing company instead of doing it on their own or hiring someone with their own money.

With most small presses, you don’t need an agent and it might be easier to get accepted because there isn’t as much competition as there is at the Big 5.

Why People Confuse These Types of Publishing

I think it has to do with the sense of what traditional publishing is in most writers’ minds. You expect a big company to pick up your book, have lots of editorial and design support, stellar marketing, and bookstore distribution. While that’s great, and some authors do get to live that experience, that is only a small part of traditional publishing.

For obvious reasons, there are only a handful of major companies (the Big 5) while there are hundreds, even thousands of smaller ones. It’s still traditional publishing if you have to be approved by a company or some kind of gatekeeper.

The confusion comes from other industries, I think, such as indie music. In the music world, that means bands without a record label behind them producing their music on their own. This is exactly what self publishers are doing, but not the same as indie/independent authors.

In a sense, the self publisher is becoming a publishing company of one, for their own books. The indie author is joining with an already established publishing house who has multiple clients besides you.

I hope this helps you guys – leave any questions in the comments and I’ll reply as soon as I can.

July Camp NaNoWriMo

Are any of you guys participating in Camp NaNo this summer? I didn’t get to do it in April, but I’m all set for writing the second draft of Ghost Hours next month. If any of you want to add me to your cabin or message me, here’s my username: phantasmagoricviolet

I don’t think the rewrite will be complete in July because it’ll be more than 50,000 words. I have my outline and research done, so I just need to start fleshing out the scenes and getting to work.

What do you think about writing a novel this way? Does the pressure or self-competitiveness urge you to write more or collapse your process? I love a challenge, so it’s very beneficial to me to have daily goals and trying to beat my own records. Just watch out about comparing yourself to other writers. No matter how fast or slow you write, you aren’t necessarily better or worse than anyone else. Feel proud of the amount that you can write right now and own that.

How to Write Fantasy Books

I started this blog 4 years ago:

This was back when I had just finished the first draft of my third novel (now Rynlee’s Song, it was called Flutesong back then) and I knew a lot about writing but didn’t have any books out, obviously. Now that I’m very close to publication, I’m realizing how busy the life of an indie author is, on top of my day job.

I don’t think I’ll be able to keep up with 2 blogs, and it makes more sense to have the blog here on my author website. So, for the foreseeable future I’ll just be blogging here and I’ll still leave up the old site for anyone who wants to peruse my older posts. I just won’t be doing any updates on that one (let’s get real, I haven’t been updating it much this entire year anyway!)

Stay tuned here for writing advice, updates about my books, possibly some book reviews, news in indie publishing, and more.


WIP Update

As of today, my editor is very close to being finished with her second round and I expect to be getting Rynlee’s Song back soon. I still don’t want to say a specific publication date, because I’m not 100% sure how long it will take me to make corrections from the editor’s notes and get all the files prepared.

Also, today I finished the re-outline of a WIP I’m calling Ghost Hours. Woot! I wrote this book in February but there were a lot of things wrong with it, because I just pantsed the entire thing. It’s waaaaaay more fascinating, fleshed out and just overall better now so I’ll be starting to write draft 2 tomorrow :)

I have about 25,000 words done on the sequel to Rynlee’s Song, which is called Rynlee’s Father, but I want to finish Ghost Hours first – aiming to publish it right before Halloween. I’ll be doing a cover reveal probably in August or September.

Top 10 Sites for Writers

Let me start by saying that I have waaaaay more than 10 favorite sites about writing. These are not necessarily my best or favorite ones, but the ones I’ve learned the most from in the last few weeks.

  1. Sooz, as she likes to be called, has so many good posts on her site that talk about outlining, drafting, research, and publishing. She even has a forum where you can ask her a question – she recently answered one of mine that helped me get un-stuck on a WIP!
  2. This site has a lot of detailed posts about specific things, such as the first 250 words of your book, what to do about lack of conflict, and even self publishing.
  3. For anyone interested in self publishing and/or the industry in general, this guy tells it like it is.
  4. Known as Catherine, Caffeinated. This is a great blog that explores what it’s really like to be a writer in daily life, and adventures in self printing.
  5. My favorite post of author Rachel Aaron’s is about raising your daily word count. She went from 2k to 10k a day!
  6. This site is one of my alltime favorite references – she has it all! You’ve probably seen me tweeting about her posts recently.
  7. All around awesomeness = K M Weiland’s site. She’s very good at explaining the finer points of writing.
  8. An author with an agent whose book wouldn’t sell went indie and she’s owning it!
  9. From a variety of talented published authors, this site gives insight into the publishing industry and challenges you to do your best.
  10. Everything you need to know about marketing. Not just for indie authors!

What other sites do you guys turn to when you need some inspiration? Tell me in the comments!