I have used the word joy in the title because that is the word that first comes to mind as I sit here with the hard work behind me. Of course, the joy has just settled in. My self-publishing journey has been many things, none of them joyful.
I started editing my third novel (which I completed 2+ years ago) in July – dedicating my entire summer vacation to the part of writing I dislike the most. It was not joyful. Editing makes me crazy. Antsy. Frustrated. Irritated. Editing makes me want to do something else - anything else. I’d start off strong each morning; sitting at my desk pen in hand, editing. But then, I would suddenly find myself scrubbing kitchen cupboards, organizing my storage room, making handmade gift cards or cutting the grass. Doing anything but getting down to the business of editing. Drifting away from the book was easy and I did it on autopilot. Forcing myself to return to the book took internal brute force and discipline I did not know I had. I looked to the heavens and moaned a lot in July. When August rolled around I returned to work and had to fit editing into my spare time and there was more moaning, but I won’t lie to you, my cupboards and storage room looked amazing!
Fast forward two months, edits finally complete. Yay! But then I had to begin the all-new-to-me process of self-publishing – cover design, title research necessitating a title change, then 100s of titles later arrive at a new title, ISBN registration, barcode purchase, arrange financing, printer research, ‘how to make an ebook’, purchase and learn the program to create an ebook, learn how to make and manage my own website, create aforementioned website, ponder marketing ideas and on, and on - each task seemingly impossible and with its own treacherous waters to navigate. The learning curve was steep, and frustrating and I wanted to quit every day. I am, however, tenacious and refuse to fail. So, with the help and support of amazing friends and family – who all simply ignored my moans - I somehow managed to muddle my way through, overcome the obstacles and survive the climb.
With a brand new shiny copy of The Influence of Now lying on my desk beside me, I am tired but I feel a sense of satisfaction and joy that can only culminate after months of hard work, dedication and self-discipline. The thrill of completion and satisfaction of a job well-done far outweigh all the frustrations and trials along the way. I am filled with joy.
So, when you find yourself on your own uncertain uphill path, stick with it. Believe me, if you survive the climb, the view is spectacular.