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Editorial & Giveaway (US/Int): Sci-fi romance author Jessica E. Subject on the freedom of being Indie

Editorial & Giveaway (US/Int): Sci-fi romance author Jessica E. Subject on the freedom of being Indie

by davincikittieJuly 3, 2013

Please help me welcome indie author Jessica Subject!

Thank you so much to DavinciKittie for inviting me to be a part of the Indiependence Day Week event at GraveTells! It’s my first time visiting the blog, so for those who don’t know me, I write science fiction romance and contemporary romance ranging from sweet to erotica.

Alien Adoration (Alien Next Door #1) by Jessica E SubjectNow, I am an indie author in that I’m not represented by a literary agent. I have fourteen stories published with Decadent Publishing, and recently, I self-published the first story in my Alien Next Door series, Alien Adoration.

When I first started writing, I searched out authors on various social networks, finding out how everyone was published, learning what I would have to do in order to get my work out there. At that time, I found two avenues, finding an agent in order to sell it to a New York publisher, and self-publishing, which was usually vanity presses who would publish your story for you, no matter what it was, for a ridiculously large fee. The chances of being successful with the first are very low. Many authors get form rejections without anyone ever having read the story. And with the second, what author has that kind of money to throw around without any guarantee of success?

[quote]what author has that kind of money to throw around without any guarantee of success?[/quote]

Then I met the wonderful authors who participated in the now defunct, Six Sentence Sunday. I learned about e-publishing and the multitude of e-publishers across the web. Now, even with this avenue, one has to be careful. All I can say is do your research.

And there are many freedoms to being indie published and self-published. Being indie published, I can write the stories I want to write. I don’t have to conform to what’s popular. Considering I write science fiction romance that is NOT fan fiction, this is a good thing. Plus, when I finish a story, I get to decide where I want to place it. I can either send it to an e-publisher, or self-publish the story. Though, if the story is part of a series already contracted with a publisher, one has to be cautious of their contract.

[quote]…when I finish a story, I get to decide where I want to place it.[/quote]

After the story is finished and ready to go, it still needs to be edited. If I submit to a publisher, and the story is contracted, the publisher will have the story edited free of charge. From experience, some publishers have better editors than others. And if I self-publish, I get to choose who I hire to edit my work. I work with editors that I have previous experience working with through Decadent Publishing.

[quote]If I self-pub, I have to hire a cover artist. Unless you are a graphic artist, it is very important to have someone else do this for you.[/quote]

Depending on how I decide to have my story published, I must also arrange for cover art. If I go with an e-publisher, the cover is provided free of charge, and I have to fill out a cover art form to give my input on how I imagine the cover, and I can provide links to pics that I think may work. Sometimes the cover artist uses them. And other times, not so much. If I self-pub, I have to hire a cover artist. Unless you are a graphic artist, it is very important to have someone else do this for you. But, you can choose whoever you want, based on whether you like previous covers they’ve made. What works for some doesn’t work for others.

One of the best things about self-publishing is that I can choose my own release date. I can arrange it around what’s going on in my life, and when I have time to promote my new release. Now, many e-publisher’s will work with you to find a date that works, but this isn’t always the case.

[quote]One of the best things about self-publishing is that I can choose my own release date.[/quote]

When self-publishing, I can choose where my story is published, and what formats it is available in. I also decide on the price. With e-publishers, they decide. Decadent offers a variety of formats in multiple e-book retailers. But, I know of some who only offer one format, thus limiting the book’s audience. And e-publishers generally set the price based on word count.

Then comes promotion. This can be a downfall of being indie published. Right now, there are many organizations to help indie authors with promotion and other issues, but the trick is to find them. I’m still learning in this area. Some places charge a fee, and others are free. With e-publishers, some will help with promotion, and others do nothing. This is just one reason why you need to do your research when looking for an e-publisher. And if you are self-published, promotion is totally up to you. You can make it as easy or hard as you want.

[quote]…if you are self-published, promotion is totally up to you. You can make it as easy or hard as you want.[/quote]

Being indie published, there are many more freedoms than you would have if published with a New York publisher, but for some, it can involve much more work. The most important thing is to do your research before you decide what is right for you. And the sooner you can get your name out into the world, in a positive light of course, the better it is when you have a new book coming out.

Alien Banner Jessica E Subject

About the author

Author picture Jessica E. Subject Jessica Subject is the author of contemporary and science fiction romance, ranging from sweet to erotica. In her stories, you could meet clones, or a sexy alien or two. You may even be transported to another planet for a romantic rendezvous.

When Jessica isn’t reading, writing, or doing dreaded housework, she likes to get out and walk. Fast. But she just may slow down if there is a waterfall nearby.Jessica lives in Ontario, Canada with her husband and two energetic children. And she loves to hear from her readers.

 Connect with the Jessica at her Website/Blog | NewsletterTwitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Amazon | Authorgraph

Giveaway (US/Int)

As a special Indie Week giveaway prize today, Jessica is offering a critique of the first 10k words in your work-in-progress for aspiring authors or a swag pack for readers! To enter to win, leave a comment or question for Jessica on this post about Indie publishing or her works then fill out the Rafflecopter below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

More Indie Week giveaways and spotlights

Check out our special spotlight of Jessica’s out-of-this-world sci-fi romance Alien Adoration here! That’s also where you’ll find today’s Indie Week Sponsor mega-givewaway entry form.

Want to see the GraveTells Indie-Pendence Week 2013 schedule? Click the badge below!

GraveTells Indie-Pendence Week 2013

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About The Author
Sue "DaVinciKittie" Brown-Moore is a veteran romance blogger and reviewer and the primary voice for Sue has been shamelessly pimping book boyfriends since 2010 and has won several blogging awards with GraveTells. Sue is also a freelance Developmental Editor passionate about helping authors bring out the best in their stories. She loves reading romance, fantasy, and sci-fi and edits any genre she reads for pleasure. You can follow Sue's editing blog, with tips and tricks for authors, at
  • July 3, 2013 at 4:39 am

    What has been the most rewarding thing about self publishing?

    • July 3, 2013 at 12:32 pm

      Hi Colette! I only self-published two months ago, so I’m still waiting to see the monetary advantages. But the thing I liked the most is that there was very little waiting. I didn’t have to wait to hear back about my submission. And I didn’t have to wait until my book came up for edits. I sent it straight to my editor, and she worked on it right away.

  • Liz S
    July 3, 2013 at 5:39 am

    Thanks for making some great points about self publishing. I really enjoyed Alien Adoration.

  • Susan W.
    July 3, 2013 at 5:53 am

    Thanks for the insight to self publishing.

  • July 3, 2013 at 7:04 am

    I’m learning the ropes myself for a possible bit at self-publishing. I appreciate your help!

    • July 3, 2013 at 12:37 pm

      There is a lot to learn. And it depends on how much you want to do yourself, and how much you’re willing to pay for. Let me know if you have any questions along the way. 🙂

  • Tina Hahn
    July 3, 2013 at 7:46 am

    Thanks Jessica for your honesty and candor on the realities of e-publishing and being a indie.

  • July 3, 2013 at 8:44 am

    What do you like best about publishing yourself? What do you like least.

    Worst Week Ever is my first novel I’m publishing and I love my greater input in bookcovers and the improved coordination between marketing plans (I never tell myself know when I think of something cool I can do.)

    And I release a book when it makes sense (which means not on top of another book)

    However, it is more logistical work at the very end. Which I need to get back to right now.

    • July 3, 2013 at 12:47 pm

      Hi Liza! 🙂 Most would be the lack of wait time. But I’m sure I’ll like the higher royalties, too. Least would be how scary it can be to do so much more on my own. I have awesome editors and cover artists outside of my publisher, but the rest is on my shoulders. Though, I’m very lucky to know so many people who have taken the plunge into self-publishing and they are always willing to help. 🙂

      All the best with Worst Week Ever! I think you’ve got a great handle on things from what I’ve seen.

      I’m getting my next story ready to send to my editors. It’s called Hey, Santa. 🙂

  • Christy Harrelson
    July 3, 2013 at 1:48 pm

    Thank you for sharing your insights about self-publishing, I love when authors share what they have learned and offer tips and advice for others who are new to the business. It makes it a little less frightening and helps to frame questions and concerns better, so that the right questions are asked. I look forward to reading more of your work 🙂

    • July 3, 2013 at 4:50 pm

      Thank you, Christy! I agree that it is important for authors to know all of their options and the pros and cons of each before making any decision. And not everyone’s experiences are the same.

  • bn100
    July 3, 2013 at 4:12 pm

    That’s great you can choose your own release dates

  • Kai W.
    July 3, 2013 at 6:52 pm

    How do you reach your audience especially if you happen to be a new, unheard-of author in the self-publishing?

    • July 4, 2013 at 4:05 am

      Hi Kai! That’s the hardest part. If you can get your name out there beforehand as a blogger, that’s a great start. Doing blog tours, blog hops, and release parties (like at The Romance Studio) are just some of the ways to reach out to your audience. There are also author memes, such as Hump Day Hook, Thursday Thirteen, My Sexy Saturday, and Weekend Writing Warriors that you can participate in. Those are all free. You can also pay for advertising at various sites like Goodreads, The Kindle Book Review, and more. Prices vary. Hope that helps. 🙂

  • BookLady
    July 3, 2013 at 8:36 pm

    Great post. It is always very interesting to learn how an author publishes a book. Thanks for sharing.

  • July 4, 2013 at 1:27 am

    Thank you so much for being one of our awesome featured guests for Indie Week, Jessica! Your editorial was fab and I’m looking forward to reading Alien Adoration. <3

  • felicia sidoma
    July 5, 2013 at 9:46 pm

    I have read a sci-fi, alien romance book before. I loved it. I look forward to reading yours now too!!.

  • August 11, 2013 at 8:13 pm

    Congratulations to Tina H. on winning the prize! A big shout-out goes to Jessica Subject for being one of our featured Indie Week guests and taking time to hang out and chat with us. <3

    Thank you to everyone who stopped in to show your support of Indie authors and publishers!

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