On Rough Drafts and Making Stuff

I’ve done it.

It didn’t seem like I’d ever do it, but I’ve done it.

I’ve finished the rough draft for The Hunted.

The sequel to The Marian is officially the longest rough draft I’ve written, and I only hate it a little right now. Don’t worry: this is perfectly normal. You’re supposed to hate a rough draft, because rough drafts are supposed to suck. The good news is that as much as I hate this draft, I love what it can become. This story is going in some really fun directions, and I know think hope you’re going to love it. I mean, if you didn’t like The Marian, then you’ll hate The Hunted, because it basically does everything that The Marian did, but more and bigger.

But yeah, I’m excited.

I’m shooting for a release by the end of the year. That takes into account six months of editing and polishing, and then a little more ramp up time to promote the project around the interwebs. I’m rolling around a few ideas of how to best build buzz, one of which involves giving away some free e-copies before the book hits online retailers, so if that interests you, stay tuned to my Facebook in, like, six months.

This is why I like self-publishing. I didn’t have to run any of this past a publisher or an agent or anyone. I get to experiment and play around and fail. That’s fun to me. This blog and these books have been my playground for the last couple years, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

This is an incredible time to be a content creator, but you wouldn’t know it talking to some artists out there. As a radio DJ and a self-published author, I see a pretty wide variety of complaints. From musicians complaining about Spotify to authors complaining about Amazon algorithms, I’ve seen my fair share of reasons why it just isn’t like the Good Old Days anymore.

And you know what?

You can keep the Good Old Days.

Yeah, it’s hard to make money as an artist, but it’s not like that was ever a smart or stable career choice. Artists are certainly facing new and different challenges these days, but we also have greater freedom than we’ve ever had. Not too long ago, after every agent I contacted rejected Alphathat would’ve been the end for me. I would’ve put that manuscript in a drawer somewhere and moved on to another project.

Instead, thanks to all the tools available to authors today, I was able to ship my novel to retailers all around the internet and get it to readers all around the world. I was even able to interact with a few readers who enjoyed it.

And I spent less than $200 doing it.

That’s crazy.

It’s cheaper and easier than ever to make stuff and put it in front of people. That’s good news to people like me who just want to make stuff and see if it strikes a chord in people.

So, yeah. If you’re looking to make cash hand over fist without much effort, you might want to try another line of work.

But if you just want to make stuff and connect with people who like what you’ve created, then welcome to the party.

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