For years self-published authors have made a terrible name for themselves by putting out poorly written books with little or no editing. They paid 'vanity presses' to make their dreams come true and usually ended up with a garage or warehouse full of books no one wanted. I met one of these people while in college. She handed me a thing that looked more like a cheap pamplet than a book and told me she had to give them away because no one wanted to buy them. I swore right then and there that I would NEVER publish a book on my own.
Never say never. Didn't James Bond say that? Anyway, I'm in a unique position with the Vampires Rule series. I had an agent who loved these books. Stephanie worked for the Trident Media Group, one of the top agencies in New York. When I landed her, I thought I'd had it made, but Stephanie couldn't find a publisher for these books. She believed in them and kept trying for a year to find a home for them. We came so close; it was ridiculous. An editor at Thomas Nelson wanted to publish them, but her boss said no. A couple other editors told us they would have published them if we'd sent them two years earlier. A few didn't like the books, but most editors echoed each other, saying they were afraid to touch them. The market is saturated with vampire novels and editors feel it is only a matter of time before readers say enough is enough.
So what do I do? I can let these books sit on a shelf in cyber-space, gathering dust. Or I can (gulp) publish them myself, make a few bucks, and hopefully bring a little joy to some readers. I've already gotten a few nasty comments and cyber-glares from people online, but I am going to hold my head high. When people ask me if I'm a self-published author, I am going to stand tall, hands on hips and eyes set on the future. In a voice filled with authority and a touch of awe, I'm going to say, "I am an Indie Writer."