The headline reads:
I was checking out a link to a book festival I saw on twitter, and it occurred to me that maybe San Antonio might have such a thing! Biting my bottom lip in excitement, I googled it, and lo and behold, I found the San Antonio Book Festival! http://www.saplf.org/festival/
So, here I am, all excited that I can go to a local book festival and rub elbows with authors and readers, maybe some local bookstores ... the possibilities fired off in my mind like fourth of July fireworks. Until this moment, I had not bothered dealing in local publicity and book signings, because its generally considered a waste of time among the internet marketing crowd. I have learned that I can spend a few minutes on Facebook, Twitter, or Goodreads, and speak directly with readers and fans of my genre. All the fuss about book signings is for authors whose books are sitting on the shelf in a store somewhere.
As y'all probably know, I am self-published, and my books are in every major online retail store, but, they are not on bookstore shelves. And, I haven't even bothered to do paperbacks for every novel as of yet, some are only available as ebooks.
For the first time, I began to seriously contemplate the opportunities that might exist for me in the local market of San Antonio as an author at this wonderful book festival.
Then I clicked through to the book submissions page, and found this:
Well, I don't write westerns, and while my books could be called thriller, really they are paranormal romance, romantic suspense, erotic romance, and urban fantasy. And, of course, I am self-published, so that throws a wrench in the whole idea. I guess I don't fit in with San Antonio's idea of the Texas literary culture.
The good news is, they will gladly charge me $375 to open a festival exhibit. Maybe I could get painted up like a clown and sit at the dunk tank while all the library officials throw their literary culture books at me in hopes of seeing the local self-published author get a good dunking!
Wouldn't that be a hoot?
What a fool I was, getting all excited that my novel THE NIGHTLIFE SAN ANTONIO, a book about San Antonio (and vampires, Mexican Mafia, Texas Aryan Brotherhood, and corrupt San Antonio police), might actually get some local publicity! You'd think a local author, who recently hit the NY Times and USA Today bestseller lists, who wrote a book about San Antonio, would be allowed to submit that book for the San Antonio Book Festival. That makes sense right?
Does it really matter if high muckety muck editors fondled my book? I mean, the fact that three published authors, Patricia Knight, Marilyn Lakewood, and Kayla Stonor edited my book isn't good enough?
According to authorearnings.com, in a snapshot of Amazon bestselling novels in July of 2014, self-pub authors controlled anywhere from 30% to 60% of market share on the bestseller lists, and were earning 40% of the ebook sales dollars going to authors.
So, I think the real question today isn't whether or not I will foot the bill to set up a festival exhibit like a popcorn vendor or a some guy selling herbal weight loss supplements, the real question is:
When is the Texas literary culture going to step down off their high horse and realize that self-publishing is the growing trend world-wide, and that *gasp* some of us actually have decently edited novels that actually sell on nationwide bestseller lists?
I think I might have to pass on this phenomenal book festival that won't allow my books to sully such a noble event. Besides, I will probably be too busy publishing and selling books to bother with it.
I leave y'all with a quote from Hugh Howey in the author earnings website:
"While it should be a jolt to see that Indies are earning nearly 40% of the ebook dollars going to authors, we are starting to take this reality for granted. That’s real progress. As it has proven to be in other fields of entertainment, the indie movement in literature is not a blip and not a gold rush. It appears to be here to stay."