The secret life of an indie author

The more I talk about being an author, the more I realize how skewed perceptions can be.

I think when people hear “indie author”, they immediately assume that this is something I’m doing in my spare time, perhaps under cover of darkness. Perhaps I sneak out of bed at night to furtively write my stories, keeping it completely separate from my so-called real life.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Being an indie author is actually a full-time occupation, just as being any other kind of writer is a real job.  It doesn’t mean that every writer is able to only write–most of us are hyphenated–but the time commitment is the same.

I am a homeschooling-mom-writer.  (That doesn’t even touch my wife gig.)  A typical day (if there is such a thing) might look like this:  I wake up in the morning around 7, when my husband leaves for work. I glance through my email on my phone, because I can do that without getting out of bed.  And at this point, I can’t really get out of bed, because I am usually pinned down by one cat and possible the dog, too.

When my eyes are ready to open for real, I first tackle whatever Facebook and Twitter interactions need to be addressed–requests for reviews, other social media connections, editing/critiquing submissions.  And it’s right about then that the cats let me know in no uncertain terms that it is TIME FOR TREATS.

Once I’m out of bed, I try to complete my morning chores like making the bed and tossing in laundry.  I can usually accomplish those and maybe even sneak in a little editing or more email answers before the kids are up and ready for school.

I try really hard not to sneak in peeks to my social media sites while I’m schooling the kids, but I have to admit. . .sometimes while they’re working on math or spelling, I might catch a glimpse of my phone notifications.

In the late afternoon before dinner, I try to sit down to deal with any other email or messages that have come up during the day and if I can, work on my own writing, editing or planning.

After dinner, I sit down and am in my chair for sometimes 4-6 hours, working on my own writing and editing.  And of course, before I go to bed, I hit promotion again, checking and posting on Facebook and Twitter and scheduling my tweets for the following day, as well as working on any reviews, interviews, guest posts or articles that I’ve promised.

Some time after midnight, I give in to the pointed stares of the cats and fork over the night time treats, before I grab a little sleep and get ready to do it all again.

Glamorous and exciting. . .that’s the life of an indie writer. Slash homeschooling mom. Slash wife.

A Few Thoughts

This is a sort of PS to the last post about the NJ tour.

I learned a few things that I found interesting.  First of all, the students with whom I spoke were very interested in the creative process as a whole, as it relates not only to writing but to all forms of art. They wanted to know what sparked a story, what kept me writing and what was hard.

I was really fascinated to learn that among the seniors were many e-reader fans, but in the sophomore class, there was not a Nook or Kindle among them, and they did not do e-books at all. A generation gap of sorts? Perhaps.

A few students still referred to my paperback books as ‘real’ books as opposed to e-books, which I reminded them were every bit as real. Not sure that made an impression, but I put it out there!

All of the audiences were equally receptive to indie authors as they were to trad pubs. . it didn’t even phase them.

Very cool to interact with my audiences!


A Successful Tour!

Talking books, writing and publishing is so much fun.  Touring is definitely going up there with my favorite parts of being a writer.

This tour was fairly awesome (as those of you who follow me on Facebook and Twitter know–and if you don’t, why DON’T you follow me there??), and I want to share some highlights with you all.

–Talking to teenage girls who had read Fearless and were so excited to get Breathless. . .and those who had read the first two books and are impatient for the third.

–Spending time with kids who are passionate about art whatever form it takes and who asked insightful, meaningful questions during my talkbacks at SNJAPA.  I was so impressed.

–Having a reading and signing at the library that helped to shape my love of reading and to which my grandmother took me as a tot. I know that Nana was there tonight in spirit.

–Realizing that I have something to offer a new(er) writer, to help her realize a dream. I love being an indie author!

–Hearing a young girl, after having her book signed and photo snapped, run out announcing, “I got my picture taken with TAWDRA KANDLE!!”  Frankly I was impressed that she could pronounce my name.

So many, many more. . .and massive thanks to everyone who turned out and turned up, who supported, encouraged, shared, posted, tweeted, cajoled. . .cyber love to y’all.

And if you’re new to this page and found me via the NJ tour, leave a message and let me know.


NJ Tour–New Event

One more event added to my tour next week!

I’ll be doing a reading and signing on Thursday, May 17th from 7-9 PM at McCowan Library in Pitman, New Jersey.  I’m excited about this stop; McCowan was my childhood library, the place my grandmother took me when I was a little girl.  Lots of happy memories there. . .

So please plan to stop by and say hello.  I’m looking forward to seeing everyone!