No matter what, decisions are always challenging in their own right. The cons may clearly outweigh the pros in some cases. But other factors, or pure instinct can sometimes count for double, triple, even quadruple points. And once you finally make your choice, any angst associated with it is gone, just like that...poof.
Looking back at my decision to self-publish, I won’t lie. I have questioned whether it was a good or poor one, depending on the current location of pendulum that are my emotions. But what is certain is that it is now permanently checked off my Life’s “To-do” List. I had an idea, created a story, illustrated said story, and like Geppetto, I made it real.
As I did more research into self-publishing, I was reassured that the process and its abominable reputation had improved greatly since first looking into it years ago, before I even finished Centipede Dragon. Countless “Indie” authors pushed hard and sacrificed much to see this transformation occur. Numerous organizations formed to help support these independents who were earnestly striving to produce good quality books on their own. And finally, established trade organizations began to recognize the contributions that the self-published were making.
I read a lot of reviews about which self-publishers were the “best.” I then went to their sites and read a lot of forums to understand what kinds of problems/limitations they encountered during the production process. These forums provided a wealth of collective experience that the pioneers of self-publishing generously shared. It was invaluable to know how others’ rated their experiences, and if issues occurred, how the company “resolved” them. There was so much to consider already, and so I wanted to anticipate as many hiccups ahead of time as was possible.
I began to contemplate that soon, if I went down this road, my book would be a permanent entity. And if there were any outstanding issues left, any holes in the story, inconsistencies in the characters, flaws in the drawings or layout, ANYTHING at all, I needed to address them now.