The (Emotional) Stages of Self-Publishing

I generally consider this a blog aimed at readers, not writers, so this post is a little out of the norm for what I’d usually write, but I thought I’d throw it up there as a bit of fun for any fellow writers or aspiring writers who are considering going indie.

To be clear, I’ve done all of these steps myself.

Stage 1: Conversion. “So, I read a bunch of stuff about how indie publishing is going to revolutionize world and other people are self-pubbing, and I’m going to do it too! Viva la revolucion!

Stage 2: Spamming. “I just published a book. You can read it here. It’s the greatest thing ever. Did I mention I have a book for sale? Also, pretty much all I’m going to talk about everywhere I go, especially in forums and on websites I’ve never been before is how great my book is and how much you should buy it! Seriously! Buy it!”

Stage 3: Depression. “Why aren’t more people buying my book? I did everything that Amanda Hocking and Joe Konrath told me to do…:(”

Stage 4: Anger. “This whole self-publishing thing only works for some people. It’s because I’m not writing about vampires or because I don’t have lots of money to advertise it or I don’t have the time to do self-promotion. I give up.”

Stage 5: Bargaining. “Well, Joe Konrath told me to put my book at $.99, so maybe I’ll try that.” or “Hey, maybe I can get other authors to trade reviews with me.” or “My book needs a new cover and a new blurb and to be sent out for more reviews at more blogs and to have a spot on Daily Cheap Reads and etc.”

Stage 6: Depression revisited.

Stage 7: Anger revisited.

Stage 8: Bargaining revisited.

Stage 9: Cycle through previous three stages as needed. This loop can be repeated indefinitely.

Stage 10: Triumph. “Oh my freaking God!! People are buying my book! They love me. They really love me!”

Stage 11: Doubt. “Is my book slipping in the rankings? If people bought 100 books yesterday and only 80 today, does that mean this ride is over?”

Stage 12: Depression revisited. Or, in the immortal words of the Notorious B.I.G., “It’s like the more money we come across, the more problems we see.”

Stage 13: Cycle through steps starting at depression again. As needed.

Note: The image above belongs to my very fabulous and under-appreciated book Invoke. What’s not to love about a girl being forced to cheat on her boyfriend because she’s been taken over by the spirit of Guinevere, people? I mean, that’s pathos, yo.