Once upon a time, there was a publishing totem pole.
With publishers, editors, agents, publicists, bookstores, and reviewers.
At the very bottom, nestled in a big old mud puddle, were the authors.
When I started writing, I was confused by this. Why were the folks who had the talent to create the stories at the bottom of the totem pole? We had no control over what we wrote, who bought it, how much money we made, who read it, what they said about it, what our covers looked like, the date of publication, and whether or not we were promoted.
And then...something happened.
Something really cool and really extraordinary happened.
The authors made up their own totem pole.
And we're at the top.
We're also in the middle and the bottom.
We're the whole damned totem pole.
We decide what we write about, where to sell it, how much money we'll make per book sale, how to promote it and reach our target readers, what our covers will look like, when to release our books, and who will edit/format our books.
I gotta say, I'm totally digging this totem pole.
And now for the announcement...Marie Force (as another author recently pointed out, she is a force of nature and an incredible success story in the world of self-publishing and publishing in general) and Penny Watson (that's me, I don't like it when folks tell me I can't do something) are hosting the INDEPENDENT AUTHOR SYMPOSIUM.
What is it?
A 2-day self-publishing symposium open to writers of all topics and genres.
Where is it?
Warwick, Rhode Island at the Crowne Plaza.
When is it?
Nov 1-2, 2013
Who is hosting it?
Marie Force: New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling hybrid author, who has found enormous success as both a self-publishing romance author and with her traditional releases through Berkley and Harlequin.
Penny Watson: Reviewer/Blogger at Penelope's Romance Reviews, author of contemporary and fantasy romance as Penny Watson and children's fiction as Nina Clark, and promo consultant/speaker who specializes in social media etiquette.
Tell me more!
On Friday evening, from 6-8 pm, there will be a networking reception (with cocktails, of course). And on Saturday there will be eight educational sessions, covering such topics as formatting, cover design, distribution, promotion, pricing, and more. The conference will wrap up with a question and answer session.
For detailed information about workshops, registration links, etc. please check out our website here.
Here are some of their answers...
"...make decisions on my own without anyone else telling me how it should be done...total input on what my cover should look like" -- KT Grant
"Options!...NY isn't deciding what readers should read. Readers are." -- Tiffinie Helmer
"...I get to write my characters/story exactly how I want to...experimentation--trying out different approaches to marketing, recording data...close/frequent interaction with readers" -- Penelope Reid
"Having control...I do both traditional and self [pubbing] and love it" -- TD Jones
"Total control!" -- Liberty Blake
"...ability to know what you are doing has an effect on your readers in a direct way...the ability to change things, if you choose to, is a very powerful thing...unmarketable books that will find readers because they aren't relegated to the slush pile" -- Jenn LeBlanc
"...discovering the amazing community of Indie authors and bloggers" -- Daisy Prescott
"Indie-published ebooks never go out of print" -- Judith Arnold
"Having someone actually read my book" -- Lex Callahan
"Someone will read it, someone will love it, someone will be happy that you put your whole soul out there" -- Christine Major DePetrillo
And finally, I asked Marie Force the same question. Here is what she said...
"I love having full control over every aspect of publication--from writing to editing to publication schedules and everything in between. I love the freedom to decide where I want to go with a series or characters and not have anyone tell me that's a bad idea or it won't work. It's fun to take some risks and not have to worry about the opinions of anyone but my readers." -- Marie Force
Are you ready to join the revolution? Try your hand at self-publishing, take control of your career, have creative freedom? I hope to see many of you at our conference.
For more information about the Independent Author Symposium, hosted by Marie Force and Penny Watson, please check out our website.