Meltdown/Epiphany at Grub Street Writing Conference

I slid into a bit of a self-publishing sinkhole today at Grub Street’s Muse and the Marketplace Writer’s Conference.

The morning started well enough.20140503_085533Dorie Clark (Reinventing You) spoke eloquently on the need to utilize social media, which she acknowledged as “an infinite void” where “you must prioritize your choices. Go where your audience congregates. Offer value and reason to engage.” dorie-clark-reinventing-you-HBRAll I had to do was find my niche. It seemed simple enough for my bad side.

I could build my community around a shared interest in exotic cats, firefighters, Newfoundland, orphans, uh, alcoholism and…performance sex? 20140321_223754I wasn’t so sure about that.

Jon Fine’s afternoon presentation was to the point: “Amazon is great if you want an audience. It’s free and you control all of your rights.” He reiterated Ms. Clark’s point that I just had to be willing to do all of the work, especially the marketing.

Literary Change Agent April Eberhardt‘s presentation also supported self (and partner) publishing, but she admitted that the cost would be $5,000-10,000 with no guarantees of earning a thing. 20140503_085800I wandered back outside and thought about all of this.20140503_085632Traditional publishing houses were becoming a thing of the past and so now this publishing thing was up to me, all of it, from beginning to end. Even then, I would probably not earn anything. 20140503_082824Yeah, I still have to think about that.