It's not what you gather, but what you scatter, that tells what kind of a life you have lived.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

On Trying To Be an Author

I am trying to write a series of children's arts and crafts (mostly crafts) books. I envision them as small books, 5x8 or thereabouts. Soft covers, laminated for keeping them clean, hand-illustrated, 10 projects per book. I have 9 of them outlined and I've got the first one, which is actually craft recipes for moms, just about finished. I'm doing them in Adobe Pagemaker which is a fairly easy program once you learn it. My biggest problem is how to get them published! I looked into self-publishing and that's way out of my price range. Even the least expensive publisher I found, which was Trafford Publishing, was too much for my humble budget. I have no idea how to submit them them for publishing by a publishing house and probably wouldn't find one that would take them anyway. So now I'm looking at the REAL self-publishing. Printing them on my printer or taking them to somewhere like Kinko's. Either way, I would only have to print them as they were ordered, which would help with costs, but marketing is the problem then.

You've probably all been to fairs and shows and other events that have booths, and seen the people plying their wares. Usually there will be one or two authors who are trying to sell their books, and they usually look like they aren't having much luck. I don't think I'm up for that. So that leaves the internet. BUT....I've learned from trying to set up this blog that it isn't as easy as it looks. And if this easy thing is hard for me, creating a web page is probably impossible! I'm starting to get a little discouraged about the whole project. I will keep writing, and drawing illustrations, and doodling my little title pages, etc., but now it looks like the only children who will ever see them are my grandchildren. And that's OK, but it's a lot of hard work just for 12 kids! I shouldn't say JUST 12 kids, because that minimizes their importance, and I don't want to do that! They are the most important readers my books will ever have, but it IS a lot of work.
I have also written a couple of children's story books that I don't know what to do with, either. I wrote the first one 34 and a half years ago, when I was pregnant with my first child, and it's been hanging around since then, just waiting for me to do something with it. I even wrote off for information on writing children's books - you know those ads you see in all the magazines. But it's hanging around along with the story (they just seemed to go together) and now they're both waiting for me to do something. I'm not sure the ad information is anything I will ever use, but it's nice to have the option.

So, now....................I'm hanging, too! I keep reading and checking books out of the library on publishing, and submitting manuscripts, etc. etc. etc. but it's a pretty scary thing, putting your work out there to be judged and criticized and knocked down. And that's before it even gets to the readers! Look at how long it took J.K. Rowling to get Harry Potter published, and I think those books are just about the best children's books I've seen in a long time. I don't even necessarily think of them as "children's" books, because their appeal is across the board. My little stories are definitely aimed at the younger crowd.

But, like I said, I will keep working on them, and maybe after I'm dead, one of my kids will do something with them. Enough rambling for now. "Night. Gramma G

PS - I've given up on the slide show for now and just put a photo of me and my hubby, instead.

1 comment:

  1. If you find out anything on getting them published please let us know! =) I have been writing (since 2002!!), with an already published co-author, a book on Humanitarian Crafting, (that's my part - with patterns etc) and her part is on the non-crafting aspects of helping others.

    Good premise right?

    We have talked with a dozen or so publishers. Some are interested for months, then they tell us they already have too many books in the line.

    Others don't respond, or do with a thanks but no thanks.

    She has already had 5 books published I think. It's so frustrating.

    But there has to be a way! You have adobe-- perhaps you can publish it online, in a downloadable form and charge people using Paypal?

    Love ya!!


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