Sharon C. Cooper

Just thinking…

A Daunting Thought

This weekend I attended the 1st. Annual Atlanta Black Book Expo (ABBE) which featured many up-and-coming literary professionals from poets to playwrights.  I roamed around the space talking and listening to authors describe their labor of love and what inspired them to write.  Some just always wanted to become an author, while others wrote to heal something going on within – like the guy I met who wrote his book serving time in prison.  He said writing his story over those years is what helped him make it through and in the process, he turned his life around. At any rate, even with the heart felt stories and conversations, after stopping at about five tables, a daunting thought occurred to me – everyone selling their books at this event, was self-published.  I realize that people self-publish for various reasons, but the main reason some authors self-publish is because they can’t get a mainstream publisher to purchase their work.  Hence, my daunting thought.  Will I resort to self-publishing if my manuscripts aren’t picked up by one of the big publishers? 

Don’t misunderstand, there’s nothing wrong with self-publishing, actually the thought of keep all the profits for myself really appeals to me, but the thought of doing every aspect of getting the book ready for the public doesn’t.  I’m talking about everything from writing the story, rewriting, editing, designing a great cover for the book, and don’t even get me started on marketing and selling the book!  Mind you, I do understand that even if you’re picked up by a mainstream publisher, you still have massive work ahead of you…but knowing that still doesn’t seem as intimidating as having to do every aspect of the book publishing myself. 

Okay, so getting back to the expo.  Something that one of my critique partners pointed out as we made our way through the aisles at the expo, is that this type of venue is usually where new authors display their work and unfortunately, not many sells are made at these types of events.  After she said that I glanced around and realize that during the time we were there, it wasn’t well attended (which wasn’t a surprise since it was the first one), but if everyone was like me, they went in with a set amount of money that they would spend.  That meant that though their might’ve been a hundred great books for sale, chances are, some authors went back home with the same number of books they carried to the event.

Right now I’m thinking that I would love to have more of my writing work published, but I’m not feeling the self-publishing thing…unless…maybe…if it’s publishing an e-book.  But what I really need to think about is my real reason for writing novels.  I think at this point, it can’t be solely to make money or to become a best selling author, but more about sharing an entertaining and maybe even inspirational story with others.

August 9, 2010 Posted by | Just Thinking, Writing | 7 Comments

To Slack or Not to Slack

I never thought I’d say this, but I think I’m becoming a slacker.  I remember a time when I was up and at the gym by 4:30 am and had accomplished more before 8am than most people do all day.  But lately I’ve noticed those days are long gone, and I’m not even sure if I want to go back to them.  Sure I was able to accomplish a lot during that time. I was even awarded (lovingly I might add) the name “Over Achiever” by my husband.  Now I struggle to get up by 6 am and if I scratch off three things off my “to do” list, it’s been a successful day.  Whereas, in the past if it was on the list I felt obligated to get it done by the end of the day.

This morning I was wondering if maybe I’m just at that age where I realize, it’s just not that serious.  Growing up I often heard the phrase, “don’t put off until tomorrow, what you can do today,” and for many years, I lived by this – stressing myself out in the process.  Well I’ve decided today, that those days are gone.  Now its going to be something like – If I were to die tomorrow, am I doing what I would want to be doing?

August 3, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | 4 Comments