April 17, 2013 by musehick
This week I have been wrestling with Createspace to get my poetry book Contingent Haphazards up and out there, and I have to say, I have not found it the easiest process in the world. The cover designer is not the most user friendly thing … definitely not when compared to Lulu, and some of the agreements you sign make me wonder about whether I would even be able to put anything even slightly controversial up on the site.
It’s not like I ever write anything to be intentionally controversial, but if the viewpoint is other than mainstream it can cause waves in the water, and I don’t like the idea of compromising with my right to do that. We will see how it goes. Part of the test obviously involves whether it is easier to sell my work on there, and if it proves to be so, then issues with cover designer or not, and anything else; I will have to make it work. I want this to be a viable revenue stream and there is no reason why it shouldn’t be – of all the things I do I enjoy writing most of all – it isn’t a job and it isn’t a hobby, it is part of my purpose for being alive, and so, it isn’t like I am going to ever stop doing it … that would be like holding my breath for the rest of my life.
I have always had a massive button on the idea of selling – it seemed anathema to me and antithetical to the whole idea of creativity, so I didn’t want to have anything to do with it. The thing is though – I want people to read what I write, and in order to make that happen I need to know how to make people want to read it.
Part of the new role of independent writer in a culture that gives you not only the means to put your writing out there but to sell it too, is to learn how to perform that function as well, and to do it to the best of your ability. Otherwise you are saying that you are not fit to rise to the challenge that is being issued to you, and who wants to admit that?
I am learning to do a lot of things I would have previously neglected to do, and that is how we grow and become better artists.