On getting published


As a writer, I understood the importance of getting published on one of my trips abroad. On saying “I am an author.” I was immediately asked, “Published?” And when I said, “Yes, in about 8 anthologies and one solo collection.” Their expressions said it all. From awe to pleasure, it was all writ on their faces.

My first publication happened through an anthology contest by a reputed publishing house and so did the rest of them. In total, I have been published in 11 anthologies so far.  However, this gave me a little insight into the process of publishing. A novice then, for me it was interesting to note the plethora of options available to me as an aspiring writer. But when it came to getting my solo book published I never got a chance to choose, as I had won another contest where my book was chosen for publication. Unfortunately, it turned out to be a fib, but fortunately, I didn’t incur any monetary losses.  So today, if someone were to ask me about my publishing experience I would say. “It has been a mixed experience so far!” without batting an eyelid. 

I was dejected for a long time before realizing the root cause of this whole thing. There were so many reasons that this happened to me. First was the immense peer pressure I felt every time I logged onto my social media accounts on seeing everybody coming out with their book. Secondly, I was completely unprepared and raw. I wasn’t primed to write a book and that was a perfect recipe for disaster. Third and last of all, the temptation to get published without any money led to me this sham. The contest I had won wasn’t by any publishing house but by an individual who wanted to make money while I burnt the midnight oil to write books. 

Today, when I look back I see the learning I was able to gather through this experience. It taught me to be extremely wary of any false promises and at the same time I got busy honing my writing skills so that this time when I release a book, it is my best foot forward. For all aspiring authors, I would like to share the 5 things I learned from my publishing experience:

  1. Never be in a hurry to get published – A couple of years ago there was a surge in the “get published contests” in the publishing industry leading to a lot of good opportunities for aspiring authors like me. But at the same time, it was also an opportunity for fraudsters too. Never be in a hurry to get published. It might seem like the best opportunity and if it’s missed you might end up cursing yourself for the rest of your life but remember anything done in haste never leads to the best results. 
  2. Verify all facts and figures before signing on any dotted line – Having worked as an editor for a publishing house, I got an opportunity to see things from the other side of the table too. And it was equally scary! Many times in excitement to see our name in print, we skip reading the agreement word to word leading to disastrous results. Like it happened in the case of an author recently. She never realized her publisher had mentioned in the agreement that the book will never have an e-book version.  Hence it is of utmost importance to verify all facts and figures before signing the agreement or agreeing to any terms of the email.
  3. Don’t give in to peer pressure – Being an aspiring author in today’s times includes a lot of networking. You need to join Facebook groups, take part in blog tours, Twitter chats, and a lot more. You are constantly surrounded by authors amidst this leading to a discussion that is more or less about books only. It is obvious to feel the pressure when you see a fellow author publishing a book or maybe more. There are high chances of feeling jealous or worse, feeling left out. 
  4. It is NOT a race – Remember it is not a race. Learn to enjoy the creative process of writing, and creating stories, and hone your skills if need be. There is no first and there is never going to be a last. 
  5. Give your best – You must give your best to the book that you are putting out on the market for a reader to purchase. After all, a reader has to spend money to read your work, so it might as well be worth the time, effort, and money for them!



Views expressed above are the author’s own.


Source link

Leave a reply

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here