Why I Don't Self Publish

A company I occasionally write for took a survey of its authors, asking our least favorite question.

The question that makes my ossicles* clatter?
"WHY DON'T YOU SELF PUBLISH?"

*Ossicles are those tiny bones in your ears. If they're crackling, you can imagine how the rest of my body feels. It's not that this isn't a good question. Heck, why not self publish and make millions like that Shades of Manatee author, or that famous author dude who went it alone, or that actress?

I'm not on this journey to make millions.

I'm writing because it's what I want to do. It makes my heart sing, even if it makes my eyes red and bleary when I'm working in the middle of the night on an idea that won't let me sleep. 

Less poetically and more realistically, I am not any of those people with an established platform. Okay, Shades of Battleship woman wasn't big before that book. Good for her. But for most of us, self publishing isn't that sleazy...I mean easy! Good for her. Nothing wrong with a little good hearted smut now and then.

I'm not looking for fame either.

Self publishing takes loads of self promotion. It helps immensely to sell yourself from a platform, a very high and recognizable one, as in you have 100,000 books already sold and want to sell your own quickly while the publishers take a couple of years to produce your next one. That's not me and that's not my road.

I'm on this journey for the sake of the journey. 

I'm here for the ride. For the ups and the downs. Not for being skyrocketed into space where the atmosphere is thin and my friends are too thin. I like life in all shapes and sizes, the fat, the thin, the good, the bad, and the ugly. Sure, if you plied me with enough pints of Guinness, I might admit I had visions of topping the NYT best seller list.

I don't write for end result...just for the next best draft.

Celebrity and money are not the gods I travel with. And at this point in my life, it is all about the journey. I write to because it brings me joy...and tears at times. That's part of the ride. I'm not looking for perfection. Just to live each day to its fullest. 

So why does it bother me when people ask why I don't "just" self publish? It's hard to explain what taking a ride is like to one who is already thinking of the destination.