Ed’s Casual Friday: So You Want to be an Indie…

Why not, right? All that seems to be involved is uploading an unedited Word file, then buying a basket to catch all the money that will immediately shower down upon you. However, as there may be the occasional snare along this way, asking yourself the following ten questions ahead of time may save you some surprises later.

1.)    Have you written a book?

  • A.)   Yes. (continue to question #2)
  • B.)    No. (Um. Okay. Yeah, you are probably going to want to do that first, just to make sure you’re comfortable with ignoring friends and family for long stretches of time, forgetting to do stuff like showering and eating, and developing a chair-shaped butt callus. Go ahead and do that, I’ll wait. (checks watch) Back already? Great, on to #2.

2.)    Is your book about vampires?

  • A.)   No. (continue to question #3)
  • B.)   Yes. (That’s probably a savvy move on your part, but really…any chance I can talk you out of it?)

3.)    Has your book been edited by someone who is not you, is not related to you, you are not having sex with, is not trying to have sex with you, speaks the language the book is written in, and/or would rather hurt your feelings then risk you looking like an idiot in public?

  • A.)   Yes. (continue to question #4)
  • B.)   No. (Did you hear that? That was the braying of wolves. Hungry wolves who like grammar.)

4.)    Are you counting on the proceeds of this publication to pay for food, clothing, or shelter anytime soon?

  • A.)   No. (continue to question #5)
  • B.)   Yes. (Yeah, you may want to look into a more reliable source of income. Like buying lottery tickets or mugging tourists)

5.)    Do you enjoy being blasted and mocked by people you’ve never met?

  • A.)   Yes. (continue to question #6)
  • B.)   No. (Imagine a book you absolutely hate, couldn’t even finish, and/or consider to have absolutely no value as anything but firewood. That book is someone’s absolute favorite book of all time, and that person may read your book. What do you think they will think about yours?)

6.)    Do you mind spending the majority of your free time on social media and the like, pubbing your book for the rest of your life?

  • A.)   No. (continue to question #7)
  • B.)   Yes. (That’s a problem, as even if your book is the best thing ever written and word of its brilliance will spread like wildfire as soon as people start reading it, you still have to get them to start reading it. And you know what? Everybody else is trying to get people to read their books, too.)

7.)    Can you hear the sentence, “Oh, so you’re not a real author,” without kneeing the speaker in the swimsuit area?

  • A.)   Yes. (continue to question #8)
  • B.)   No. (Then buy some knee pads)

8.)    Are you the next JK Rowling?

  • A.)   No. (continue to question #9)
  • B.)   Yes. (Okay…no you’re not. Consult a physician if delusion lasts longer than four hours)

9.)    Do you know the difference between THEN and THAN?

  • A.)   Yes. (continue to question #10)
  • B.)   No. (Just, just stop. You’re killing me.)

10.)  Do you have it within you to do something other than this?

  • A.)   Yes. (buh-bye)
  • B.)   No. (Then do this)


In place of an after dinner mint (they are wafer thin), another real one-star review of a real book, by a real reader.

“People are wrong when they say Twilight ruined the vampire genre, as it sucked to begin with.”
Dracula by Bram Stoker

Author: M. Edward McNally

Epic fantasy author M. Edward McNally is a North Carolinian of Irish/Mexican extraction. He has a Masters in English Lit from ISU and Russian/East European History from ASU. He grew up mostly in the Midwest along I-35 northbound (KS, IA, MN), and now resides in the scrub brush surrounding Phoenix AZ, where the scorpions and javelinas play. Learn more about Ed at his blog, and his Amazon author page.

26 thoughts on “Ed’s Casual Friday: So You Want to be an Indie…”

  1. This post is priceless; what a great way to start my morning. I guess I have made the right choice and speaking about wolves, I hear them scratching at my door. Thanks Ed.

  2. Ok, ok, I’ve got my rough draft in hand and I’m heading for the bridge. Now are you happy? And speaking of wolves, city boy: do wolves bray? I know wolves bay, as in “at the moon.” Bray? That’s jackasses. Oops, I already mentioned my rough draft.

  3. It’s midnight on Friday here as I check my emails before toddling off to bed; now I’m off giggling and nodding my head. Thanks, Ed, tonight I’ll go to sleep with a smile on my dial. Good post, Ed.

  4. So what IS the difference between “then” and “than”? Sir, I think you doth mock those of us who know we can write good English, only don’t feel like proving it! 😉

  5. Great post Ed! As for vampires in a novel though…

    1.) I love vampires. You should totally put one in your next book. Can you imagine Matilda Lani as a vampire? Wow, that would rock my world.

    A.) Yes, great idea! (Go read your article.)
    B.) No, that’s insane. (Continue to question #2.)

    2.) Is there a difference between a Stephenie Meyer vampire and one from Anne Rice?

    A.) No. (Vampires should never glitter. Go back to the beginning and read Dracula by Bram Stoker and stop when you get to The Vampire Lestat by Anne Rice. Your vampire education will then be complete.)
    B.) Yes. (Vampires should never glitter. You have a basic foundation in vampire lore, and I would trust you to take a stab at the genre.)

      1. Oh Brian! It totally would! I’d buy it without caring what was inside just because of the name!!!

        When are you writing it!!!? 😉

  6. I agree with Brian putting it on Amazon and Smashwords. Actually, I do buy lottery tickets because I have a chance to win just as much as anyone else who buys one. No I haven’t won anything yet. Do you think if I did I’d be on here writing a response to this hilarious post…yeah, probably would, it is one of your best, Ed. But even if I did win the lottery, I’d still be writing but doing it on a beach in Hawaii on my own private island. Who wants an invite when I do win?

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