Why would any author in her right mind do this? Several reasons. First you need to understand I was a mid-list author. I made money for the publishers, but not tons of it. I did write for more that one of them, so there are various reasons.
Reason One: I reached my limit of having to conform to “lines.” What do I mean? I’d send in a proposal, meaning a synopsis and a couple of chapters. A tentative okay would come back that they wanted it if I did thus and so. I then had to change my concept of the story. But I did so and got the contract. Then came the editing. Could I add a sex scene here and here? Occasionally the places where I was asked to do so were so totally wrong for the story I couldn’t, but I’d find another spot for the extra sex. Most of my editors were excellent and never asked me to add more sex in the wrong place, but they almost always asked for a touch more here and there. Hey, this was their job, to determine how much sex a line needed, and I never blamed them.
Reason Two: Taboos in many lines. Mostly paranormal taboos--going so far as to tell me identical twins couldn’t have mental links. Another was heroes couldn’t have certain jobs or professions. This was easier to avoid, but narrowed possibilities.
Reason Three: While other publishers didn’t have any non-negotiable no-nos in their much looser lines, there were other problems, one being if the author didn’t sell a certain amount of books, she had to change her name. (At least I had a choice of name here). With another publisher I did not. The senior editor decided my real name was “too depressing for a romance” and so simply changed it and told me this was my new name. She didn’t actually say “or else” but it was implied. For years after that I was stuck with a pseudonym I would never have chosen.
So when epublishing came along, I decided to see if that had fewer restrictions. I found none and couldn’t believe it. For awhile I straddled the fence, but then switched to totally writing ebooks. Do I make a lot of money? No. I refer to it as walking around money. Am I happier? You bet.
Reason One: I have a personal relationship with my actual publisher, not just the editor who goes over my writing. This is a real plus.
Reason Two: When an editor suggests a change, I find that almost all of them improve the story. Not one editor has ever asked me to add sex scenes or to change my name.
Reason Three: I’m able to finish a book on my own schedule, instead of having to rush to meet a deadline. This because most epubs don’t want partials, but a finished ms. And a plus I didn’t expect--I’m able to have my rights-back work accepted by epubs. An interesting sideline of this is that several of my epub editors have caught errors that NY editors missed. So don’t tell me all epubs have bad editing, because it’s certainly not true of any of mine.
Reason Four: I actually get cover input. In the past I had covers I hated among the ones that were either tolerable or really good. Did I have any say in getting a bad cover changed? No way. Marketing perceived it as an attention-grabber--end of discussion.
So, yes, now I’m older and that may be part of my getting fed up with what I was doing. While the switch hasn’t made me rich, it’s certainly made me much happier. And I enjoy reading ebooks more than print these days, because I can crank up the font for these getting-older-each-day eyes.
What’s my newest ebook? (Barring any editing or cover glitches)
Dragon’s Stone, the last book of the Darkness of Dragons Trilogy--Out from Devine Destinies September 1
Blurb: Evil’s once again leaking from the depths of the abandoned mine and only Gwen and Ellis are left to try to contain what dwells there. Though they both carry dragon blood, neither can shift for different reasons. They also need three special people, not two, and the only possible third is a Siamese cat…