The Word: Indie Advice From Bryan Tann
When I was first approached to guest post for my good friend L, I said to myself; Oh shit what am I going to talk about? Dammit, Tann! I promised her that she would have something to her that very night, but of course, that promise went unfulfilled because, at the time, I was continuing a Blue Bloods binge campaign, but was finding no real joy. I had just finished the biggest business conversation I have had to date but was still feeling very sorry for myself. I still kind of am. However, I realize that now I can use some of that misery to help those of you are that are looking to stake your own claim in this world we call Independent Publishing.
I, Bryan Tann; author of The Path of Redemption series, and The John Baker Chronicles am going to attempt to help you understand that this is a business, and it will break your fucking heart if you let it.
Rule number one in Independent Publishing is that its another form of Show Business, not Show Friends. Sorry for the throwback to Jerry Maguire but it’s the best way that I can describe it.
For the last four years now, I have had the privilege of being involved in this Fraternity of Authors, Publishers, Editors, Graphic Artists, etc. I have met some wonderful people, some amazing friends. Among them, L. Bachman, Kindra and Edd Sowder, E.S. McMillan, TJ and Kris Weeks, just to name a few. These are people that have become extremely close to me, and continue to help shape me so that I can evolve into a better writer every time I sit down in front of my laptop and open Word and put my thoughts to words so that I can entertain those few that are goodly enough to read my work.
Unfortunately for every positive person that comes into your life as you join this Fraternal Order, you’ll have at least double digit of negative people that will swarm you. The worse part about it all? They’ll come to you smiling just as wide and caring and loving as those that bring you the positive feelings. These vampires will suck every bit of joy from what the best times of your life should be and will not be thinking once, twice, or three times about how they’ve made you feel. Worse yet, there won’t be much you’ll be able to do about it but take it, like it, and hope that you’ll get a groovy T-Shirt in the mail for your trouble. Spoiler alert…you don’t get shit.
Even as I type this, I feel like I owe your eyes and your brains an apology. Of course, this makes sense! Any damn fool should know these things! However, when it comes to business word travels and if the wrong word travels it could be bad for you. You want to make sure that any words spoken of you are positive, with as little negative as possible. If you have a negative reputation against you, some folks may be willing to work with you, others won’t. However, those that do will not give you anywhere near as much leeway as they would if you have a positive reputation.
Keeping a positive reputation isn’t easy. Especially when you want to question and berate someone that you feel screwed up your release, screw up your promotions, or otherwise make you feel like you are useless even though you’ve done the best that you possibly could. It will take its toll on you. It’s going to hurt. You’re going to cry and you’re going to carry it and it’s going to be personal for you and it will hurt and last for quite a while. I will say to just keep smiling and being positive. The pain will pass. The BS situation will pass.
Now that doesn’t mean be a doormat. Oh hell no. But lashing out and looking to rip someone in half, at least in the early stages of your career, isn’t advisable. Instead cling to your mentors, those people that truly care for you. Seek their advice on how to deal with a particular person, especially if they know the person that is the focus of your anger. Use their wisdom. Best yet, absorb their wisdom and pass it on to someone that’s just starting. Pay forward the cycle of positivity. There will always be someone walking behind you, don’t forget who you were when you were in their shoes.
I hope this convoluted mess is useful to you. Have a positive 2019
Bryan Tann is the author of The Path of Redemption series, The John Baker Chronicles, Ed and Livvy, a multitude of tales in various anthologies, and the upcoming tales titled ‘The Concussion’, the third Bryce Kreed novel, the third story in the John Baker Chronicles, and many other silly little works of BS.
Bryan is a native of Pittsburgh, PA where he’s lived for all but 10 of his damn near 40 years.
Check him out here:
Web: bryantann.com Twitter: @BryanTannAuthor Instagram: BryanTannauthor Facebook: @AuthorBryanTann