Sometimes it’s still hard for me to believe that I’m a novelist. Some might say that I took the easy path by self-publishing, and to be honest, there have been times when I’ve thought that myself. But, why not self-publish? I’m not looking for prestige, fame, or tons of money (though all of that would be nice). I’m looking to express myself through my writing and to share my stories with readers. Self-publishing allows me to do that.
I took an early retirement from a successful career as a librarian and, I’m sure like many others before me, found myself with a lot of spare time. It wasn’t until the end of my fifth year of retirement, after working part-time for a while and unsuccessfully trying to develop serious hobbies, that I began to write. Five months later, the first draft of a novel was completed. Then it took another two years to rewrite and edit it, during which time I also made unsuccessful efforts to find a publisher and an agent. Ultimately, I self-published because it was the quickest way to get my work out to readers. At my age, I didn’t want to take a chance that my novel might not get published until I was eighty years old (if I’m lucky enough to live that long).
The novel is titled My Doormat Days, and it is the coming-of-age story of a young Latina. I was inspired to write the book partly because of my own experiences dealing with issues of self-confidence and self-esteem, which are topics to which many readers can relate. I also was inspired to write it because I wanted to tell a story of an average, non-stereotypical Latina, a character that is not often depicted in mainstream fiction. I’m proud of the book, but now I’m dealing with the unpleasant side of writing, marketing one’s work. If you’ve ever written a book, you know what I’m talking about. One cannot write a novel, or any book, make it available on Amazon, and then expect it to sell itself. That just isn’t going to happen. In future posts, I’ll write more about marketing.