Sunday, January 5, 2014


I don’t know where you live, but here in Kentucky we’re hunkering down, preparing for some seriously cold temperatures, ice and possibly snow. We’ve known about this storm, Ion, for several days, with both The Weather Channel and local news channels updating forecasts every hour. In response to these dire predictions, there has been a mass assault on grocery stores. (Personally, I’ve closed down all unnecessary rooms in my house, moved my living into a much smaller space, and bought a second pair of Smartwool socks.) Why? Because we’ve known it’s coming so we’re planning ahead and preparing for survival.
As I’ve watch all the warnings posted on TV and driven past the full-to-capacity grocery parking lots, I’ve thought about my writing career. Yes, career. At this moment, I’m still pre-pubbed but that will change soon. And I’m realizing that I need to be prepared for that moment when I flip over to the Golden World of Published. I need to lay out a detailed plan for Book Two and Book Three. And Book Four and Five. I have no intentions of being a one and done writer, I want a career. So I’ve got to ruthlessly hack out time in my schedule for writing.
Since I’m choosing to go the Indie route, these plans and preparations are even more necessary. There will be no editor or agent pushing me to make deadlines. It’s up to me to want it enough to sit down and do the work.
There won’t be a staff of editors ready and waiting for the arrival of my manuscript. It’s up to me to schedule this weeks or months in advance. There won’t be cover artists on stand-by, either. I have to plan ahead and reserve a time slot.
Success in the Indie world is seldom an accident, it’s a planned effort. It’s a disciplined preparedness that keeps you at the computer working on the next book and the next book and the next book.
There are moments when having all the decisions in my hands is overwhelming, but there are also moments when it’s sheer joy, when I know this is right.
So if you’re considering this route, I encourage you to move past dreams and start planning. Prepare to face the mountains of decisions. Prepare to read marketing books till you’re cross-eyed. Prepare for the feeling of elation when you finally do it.
And buy some Smartwool socks. Seriously. They’re great.



Kurt Hampe said...

Smartwool socks--they're not just for keeping warm. They're good for writing, too, because they fit well in my hiking boots, and really, when do I think better when I'm in the middle of the woods and can't type?

I'd wish you good luck, but as you already pointed out, it's about good preparation.

Suzi said...

We're not getting hit by snow, but we've got those -22 temps (-48 windchill). Since school was cancelled today, will be sticking inside.

I'm not published either and right now I have no plans to self publish. I see what friends are doing and right now I'm not ready for all that extra effort that comes with self publishing. Maybe some day, but not now.

Stay warm!

Kristin Lenz said...

We've been hit by the big snow storm here in Michigan too, and schools are closed.

It sounds like you're taking all the right steps to be successful at indie publishing - not an easy choice - but some of my friends have said the same as you - that it's daunting, but also very liberating. All the best to you in 2014, and looking forward to more news about your books!

Eden Jean said...

I am also in KY, and my library is open and busy! People are trying to stay warm here, with the crazy below zero wind chill. . . I wish I were at home writing!
Good luck with your preparations, and in your future career! Although it sounds like you are no stranger to hard work, which I believe is what really creates luck ^_~

Lisa Tapp said...

Dear Kurt, pocket pad and pencil. Just saying. ('Cause I've been there and done that!)
Suzi, if the day comes when you're ready, there are so many resources to at least point you in the right direction.
Kristin, thanks. I'll keep you posted. I'm hoping to have the first book out February 1st.
Hi Eden! Libraries are warm, wonderful places to be when the weather sucks. There's always a story to be found that will take you away to a better place.
To all of you, stay warm, and happy 2014.

Kelley Lynn said...

Hi there! I found you guys via Suzi :)

This is so true. I do the 'both' route. Traditional pub and self pub and there's so much more discipline needed for self pub. Give you so much credit and i can't wait to follow you on your journey!

Nice to 'meet' all of you.

Lisa Tapp said...

Thanks for joining us, Kelley. In the far recesses of my head I always knew writing was a business, but preparing for indie brings that truth to the forefront. If I want it, I've got to work for it. (A lot like the lottery - they won't let me win if I don't play!)

Colette Ballard said...

Cheers to your hard work and going for it, Lisa! I believe in you:)