â€œWhy Did You Chose To Self-Publish? This is the first question most Self-Published Authors are asked. However, whatâ€™s really going through the mind of the person asking is, â€œSo you couldnâ€™t get an agent or your work wasnâ€™t up to snuff.â€ Thatâ€™s so not true.
Iâ€™ve learned a lot on the road to becoming a self-published writer. First, I had an agent. A well respected agent in the world of Christian Fiction. Let me preface this by saying, she knew my writing style. Sheâ€™d read the first five chapters of my book. Actually, it was a different book. [Thatâ€™s a story for another time.] She got my book to â€œBoard.â€ Two years later and Iâ€™m still waiting to hear if that publisher wants to move forward with my book. I think itâ€™s safe to say, they passed on it.
I need to back up. I write what is classed as Edgy Christian Fiction. What is that you ask? ECF [Edgy Christian Fiction], is fiction with Christian themes. What makes it â€œEdgyâ€ is that it includes elements not common in traditional Inspirational or Christian fiction. In my books, that means the kisses are a little more passionate, thereâ€™s sex between the married couples, language with a little bite, lots of physical descriptions voiced by the characters, wine, talk about abortion, divorce, fornication, lust, not liking your in-laws and anything else that goes on in everyday life. The men are hot, the women are loaded with curves and both are quick to render their appreciation of the opposite sex.
As a Christian, I wanted to read stories about women who werenâ€™t ashamed or embarrassed to express their feelings, with strong personalities and business owners. Letâ€™s be real, when youâ€™re sitting down with your girlfriends talking, youâ€™re not talking in prose. No, youâ€™re very descriptive in your comments on how amazing Idris Elba, Matthew McConaughey, Johnny Depp or Daniel Craig looked in their last movie. So why not write stories from that POV.
I feel itâ€™s a little difficult to convey to the reader the heroineâ€™s attraction is to the hero by not being descriptive in this manner. Traditional Inspiration Fiction, the heroineâ€™s feelings might be described with something like, â€œHis thick black hair was beautiful blowing in the wind, brought a smile to her face.â€ Thatâ€™s nice, but in my world, it would have a little more umph, like, â€œShe wondered how his thick black hair would feel brushing against her chin as he placed hot kisses along her neck.â€ Or maybe, â€œWhen he kissed the back of her neck, she lost the ability to stand.â€ Statements like this arenâ€™t necessarily acceptable CBA approved.
In my GENERATIONAL CURSE, I wanted to tell a story about a man who never turned down a drink or a woman. But when he hit rock bottom, he went cold turkey and fell in love with God. His priorities changed and he refused to let anyone or anything destroy that relationship. The heroine, is the complete opposite. She hasnâ€™t had a relationship with God since she was a child. And even then it was more forced. Now as an adult, the only part of marriage she wants, is a married lover. She has no desire to be with a single available man. In her mind, a married man is less complicated. But she is intrigued by the hero and he her.
In order to tell the story, I had to take the reader on a journey with the heroine. I had to show how complicated and empty her life was by detailing her relationship with her married lover. Iâ€™m sure the story could have been told without the sex, but I donâ€™t think it would have had the same impact. I donâ€™t want to give too much away, but in the end it all makes sense.
So Why Did I Choose To Self-Publish? I wanted to tell the stories I wanted to read. I met an agent at a conference and she gave me two options: tell the story with the sex and no God or tell the story with God and no sex.
I wrestled with that statement for quite a while. But, I felt God had given me a great platform and I refused to back down. Also, I wanted covers and titles that were a little racyâ€¦another thing not really permitted in Inspirational or Christian Fiction.
So here I am, a newbie writer taking a chance writing stories with a little heat and taboo subjects. I know my style of book isnâ€™t for everyone and thatâ€™s fine. For those willing to read something a little different, I think theyâ€™ll enjoy it.
Funny thing, a few weeks after I published my book, I got an LinkedIn request from my former agent. Iâ€™m still deciding if I should accept it.
Thatâ€™s why I chose to self-pub.