Pet Peeves Of The Publishing Industry
by NS Wikarski
The hammer analogy aptly describes my experience with traditional publishing (aka legacy publishing). My first two books were published conventionally and I suffered through all the usual steps of producing a trade paperback. Editor, proof reader, formatter, cover artist, printer, distributor, publicist, book signings, fan conventions. I learned an enormous amount about the book business but, unfortunately, all the effort expended didn’t translate into much net income.
Then came Kindle ebooks and Createspace print on demand paperbacks. At first, I was hesitant to go the digital route but an author friend pointed out that since I still controlled the rights to my work, I might as well make a few pennies by selling electronic copies of what I’d written. Fortunately, my previous work experience included a few decades as a computer consultant so I was quite comfortable with formatting my own manuscripts. Given how many years I’d spent designing graphic user interfaces, I was equally comfortable with designing my own covers.
The distance from writing a novel to seeing it sold online was shortened by a couple of years. The markets that I could reach via Kindle and Createspace were global, not local. I could promote my work via cyberspace tours rather than packing a suitcase to head to yet another low turnout book signing.
Considering the months and months of work it took to create, warehouse, distribute, and market the legacy print copies, I was staggered to discover that my net royalty for each ebook or print on demand copy was exactly the same as what I was netting for the legacy print version of the same book. Best of all, in two years as a digital author, I’ve sold twice as many copies of my work as I was able to sell in nine years as a print author.
In my opinion, digital books are every writer’s dream come true. So why isn’t everybody doing this? I’ve had this conversation with several of my writer friends who are hesitant to take the plunge. For some it comes down to technical timidity. They’re afraid to format their own books much less tackle the daunting task of designing the covers. I have pointed out that they can hire knowledgeable people to help with these chores but they shrug their shoulders. They have no head for business. It’s not for them.
Other writers are extremely uncomfortable without the blessing of an agent and editor from a big six publishing house. It doesn’t occur to them that in order to receive that blessing, they are parting with their own intellectual property and the lion’s share of the income it could generate. These writers have forgotten that without the content they supply, the entire structure of legacy publishing would crumble like a house of cards. I believe the marketplace, not an agent or editor in New York, should decide the value of a writer’s work. Amazon has removed the middleman from the equation. As far as I’m concerned, Vive La Difference!
Nancy Wikarski is a fugitive from academia. After earning her Ph.D. from the University of Chicago, she became a computer consultant and then turned to mystery and historical fiction writing. Her short stories have appeared in Futures Magazine and DIME Anthology, while her book reviews have been featured in Murder: Past Tense and Deadly Pleasures. She has written the Gilded Age Chicago History Mysteries series set in 1890s Chicago. Titles include The Fall Of White City (2002) and Shrouded In Thought (2005). The series has received People's Choice Award nominations for best first novel and best historical. She is a member of Mystery Writers of America and has served as vice president of Sisters In Crime - Twin Cities and on the programming board of the Chicago chapter. She is currently writing the seven book Arkana Archaeology Thriller Mystery series. Her work on the Arkana volumes has prompted Kindle Nation to call her one of its favorite authors. Visit her website at www.mythofhistory.com.
Connect with NS Wikarski on Facebook
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre – Archaeology Thriller
Rating – PG13
THE ARKANA SERIES: Archaeological Thrillers That Defy History
Volume Three – The Dragon’s Wing Enigma
Volume Three – The Dragon’s Wing Enigma
Think ”Medium meets Indiana Jones in The Lost Symbol.” (Kindle Nation Daily)
Cassie Forsythe’s checkered resume never included the job of babysitter. Former college freshman, yes. Amateur relic hunter, certainly. Seer for a secret organization, absolutely. But babysitter? Not likely! Cassie is packing for the next leg of a treasure hunt to recover a legendary artifact known as the Sage Stone when trouble comes knocking at her door. Trouble takes the form of fourteen year old runaway Hannah Curtis. Hannah isn’t your average teenager. She happens to be the youngest wife of aged polygamist Abraham Metcalf. Metcalf leads the religious cult known as the Blessed Nephilim and he covets the Sage Stone for himself.
Hannah’s untimely arrival creates a predicament for Cassie. The Nephilim isn’t supposed to know that anyone else is hunting the Sage Stone. More than that, the cult must never discover the existence of the Arkana – the secret society for which Cassie works. The Arkana has spent centuries recovering artifacts of ancient civilizations which predate patriarchy–advanced goddess-worshipping cultures on every continent. Their archaeological troves document the lost women’s history of the world and need to be protected at all costs. Unfortunately, Hannah could lead the cult straight to the Arkana’s underground cache of relics. Cassie contacts Faye, the Arkana’s elderly leader, for help. The old woman spirits the girl away to her farmhouse in the country. Faye promises to keep Hannah out of sight so that Cassie and her teammates can resume their quest.
Cassie, librarian Griffin, and bodyguard Erik face a daunting task. Five sequential artifacts reveal the hiding place of the Sage Stone. The treasure hunters must not only retrieve the relics before the Nephilim, they must also substitute forgeries in place of the real artifacts to keep the cult from discovering that it has competition. Luck has been on their side so far. They’ve recovered the first artifact with their foes none the wiser. The Arkana team flies to Malta, hoping to unearth the second artifact among the ruined temples of a long-dead civilization. After a fruitless search of the archipelago, their quest leads them northward into the Basque region of Europe. Meanwhile, Abraham’s son Daniel is combing the same terrain and narrowing the gap between them.
Dragon’s Wing Dilemma
In an isolated mountaintop cave, the treasure hunters learn that the next relic can only be discovered if they “keep true to the dragon’s wing.” The clue baffles them. What does it mean? Cassie and her friends are running out of time. With Nephilim operatives closing in, will they all survive this mission? Will the cult capture Hannah and breach the defenses of the Arkana itself? Follow the dragon’s wing to learn the answers.
30th January – Guest Post at Laurie’s Thoughts
31st January – Author Interview at Author’s Friend
1st February – Author Interview, Guest Post & Book Feature at Talisman Book Publishing
2nd February – Author Interview, Guest Post & Book Feature at The Cover