Indie Authors: Writing for Passion or Profit?
For as long as I can remember, I have been passionate about good stories. It doesn't matter if the story is written, acted out in a TV show or movie, or simply told to me; if the story is good, I find myself captivated.
So what makes a story good for me? It could be a number of things, but generally if a story catches my attention, entertains me or causes me to pause and think, I like it.
As an author it is important for me to tell a story that draws the reader in and holds them captive from cover to cover. I strive to write so that the reader wants to read what happens next, and the greatest compliment I can receive is when a reader tells me they simply could not put down the book.
So what drives me to write? The answer to that is complex, as I have a number of reasons for writing: I like to entertain people with my stories and have since I was a child; I like taking everyday situations and making them extreme, mixing in some humor and even otherworldly happenings and seeing how the characters in my story react; I like to lose myself in my own writing as a break from the everyday world, and in doing so, provide my readers with a temporary escape as well; I like to live my life vicariously through some of the characters I create; I have an over-active imagination!
In short, I write because it is a passion of mine, and I have always dreamed of publishing books. I don't however, write simply to try and earn a profit.
There is nothing wrong with writing for profit, and if any of my books ever hit the big time and made me rich, I would not be upset, but it is not the driving force behind my writing. Reading author blogs and discussion boards, there are a large number of "authors" who seem to think that writing a book is their path to easy money. For most authors, nothing could be farther from the truth. Good writing is hard, and even if you do write an excellent book, getting your book noticed and turned into a best seller is very difficult. Quite frankly, if you want to earn extra income, get a part-time job as you will probably make more money working for minimum wage than you will as an indie author.
For authors who are passionate about writing, who love to tell stories that are different from the thousand of other stories already written, indie publishing is a blessing. Not only do authors now have a real way of publishing their works at little cost, there are literally millions of readers around the globe waiting to discover their writing. This new, disruptive way of publishing books has turned the traditional publishing world upside down, and I think that is a good thing. No longer are readers forced to purchase only what traditional publishing houses decide to publish. Readers now have unprecedented choice in what they are able to purchase.
Whether you write for profit or because you are passionate about story telling, write the best book possible, spend time on designing an excellent, professional-looking cover, and market your books. Who knows, you may just be the next Stephen King or J.K. Rowling!