I’ve had a few days away from my blog, mainly because I’ve been concentrating on setting up the manuscript for my book. I’m publishing through Createspace, the Amazon print-on-demand platform and, to be honest, it’s been pretty easy so far. I chose my size, downloaded a formatted template and started loading the text. I copied it over one chapter at a time and, besides a small formatting issue (why, Microsoft Word, would I want a line space after every paragraph and line of dialogue? Really?), it’s looking pretty good, if I say so myself. So the last step is to upload and finish the cover template, then, I guess, I can press Publish and that’s it. I’ll be published.
Which is a bit, just a tiny bit, scary.
Many of you who read my blog are writers and most of you have published already, so perhaps you know what I’m talking about. That moment before your work goes live, before you send it out into the world and it is no longer in your control. But I’m going to do it, of course I am. It’s why I’m writing stories, after all. And I’ve done all I can to make this the best product it can be – I’ve had it edited, a professional cover designed and, hopefully and most importantly, written a half-decent story. So it’s time to let go.
I guess this might be why some people refer to their books as their children, or describe birthing a novel. It’s not as intense, of course it isn’t, but it is a similar feeling. As my girl gets older and has to find her own way in the world, I have to slowly let go. Of course she will always be mine but her life will eventually become her own, so to speak. And so it is with my first book. I will send it out there and then it’s on its own. Open to criticism, to unscrupulous people who might copy it without leave, left to sink or swim. I will do all I can to help it, of course. Spread the word. Try to guide it as best I can. And, hopefully, there will be good things as well. Positive reviews. Sales (a few, at least). Sequels to come. More books in the future to keep it company out there. Don’t get me wrong – I’m pretty excited about it all too. I just have to get on with it.
They say with so many things that the first time is the hardest, and so I think it might be with publishing a book. Have any of you felt the same way?
PS I’m also planning an e-book version as well – will let you all know when it’s out there!