I had a tough time at school - for lots of reasons, but the one that's relevant here is competitiveness, and not my own. By the time I figured out what the problem was, I was in my mid-twenties and studying for a degree.
For brevity: I was fairly clever but shy, not good at sports, lousy at socialising, average height, average looking, an average musician - in general a bit of a wall flower. With adolescence, I put on weight, and that was so not the attention I wanted to bring to myself. In fact, I didn't want attention at all. I just wanted to get on with being me, doing what I was good at, which is also what I enjoy:
- People watching.
- Listening to music.
- Discovering new things I'm good at.
- Thinking round corners.
- Being the best I can be.
So, all those competitive team sports? Pure torture. Being ranked on exam results? Much the same. Eventually, I realised that my position relative to my peers was of no consequence. I knew if I'd done my best, and that was absolutely good enough. It's my motivation, it's how I measure my achievements (or my progress towards achieving).
What has all that got to do with Indie Pride Day?
Well, there are an awful lot of authors out there, and all of us share the same goal - not necessarily to write a bestseller or make a living from our books. Many of us write for ourselves, but we publish for other reasons. I publish because I want to challenge people to think about the complexities of day-to-day life and enjoy my stories. If they don't, that's OK. There are plenty of other stories out there.
Which is the point of all the above. Like my performance on an undergraduate essay was not affected by the performance of my peers, nor does the success of other authors have any bearing on my success. Except, maybe, if we're all happy and bigging each other up. That's surely got to be a positive thing.
There are plenty of readers, all with different tastes, all looking for different kinds of stories. It doesn't really matter that the market is saturated with books, other than it makes it really hard for us wee indies to get noticed.
Thus, here's a shout out to my indie author buddies. Go visit their websites, find their books, buy/download and read them. And if you like them, tell people about it. Share the love.
And, in return, we will love you forever. 💙💜💗
Some Indie Loveliness For You!
On the NewsNibbles blog, you'll find a round-up of Sparkly Badgers' recommendations, with links to books and authors:
You can also find a whole bunch of indie authors on Beaten Track Publishing:
And also on Supposed Crimes: https://supposedcrimes.com/
Quite a few authors I know have books available at discounted prices this month:
C H Clepitt
Joanne Van Leerdam
Jacqueline Church Simonds
Margaret Adams Holmes
I'm going to link to Goodreads profiles (in no particular order), as this is the easiest place to find comprehensive links to authors' work:
David E. Manuel
As always, thanks a million for reading.