I debated with myself whether I should write this blog post. It’s been a while, and really I want to talk about all the good things to do with my writing journey, and there have been many. However, it’s upset me that much that I felt the need to share because I think it’s important people understand just how blooming hard it is to be an indie author…
This morning I found out that ALL of my Sister of Hex books are available to download on pirating sites, but to make matters worse my latest book Accacia’s Bite (which released 21st January) was put up on one site the SAME DAY as my release. The same damn day. All the hard work I put in leading up to release has now been tarnished by some arsehats that have taken it upon themselves to take my work and hand it out willy nilly wihout any thought or consideration to the consequences.
I know that in this day and age, with modern technology and the desire for people to want everything for *free* that the temptation to take and not think about the impact it might have is great. It’s up there, why not grab it for free? If the author’s stupid enough to allow this to happen then why not, besides they’re earning tons of money anyway, so who cares right?
I’m a new author. I work hours… HOURS every day around my day job, around being a mum, a wife. I spend every spare minute of every day writing, marketing, doing promotional stuff, engaging new readers, trying to build a business. It’s HARD DAMN WORK, and despite all of that I DO NOT earn copious amounts of money. I earn enough to pay for the next cover, for advertising, for swag (that I giveaway to loyal readers). I am not quids in, not yet, though one day that’s the aim. That’s what I am working towards, for me, for my family, for my readers so that I can earn enough to pay my bills, to support my family just like everyone else and in turn giving me the freedom to write so I can give people the worlds they want to read about.
Perhaps bigger authors can factor in the losses they are hit with when it comes to being pirated, perhaps their publishers can help them out. But I only have me, and my success lives and dies by my own hard work and with the help of a few incredible people who give their time to help me. You know who you are (thank you all so much).
So what happens in this situation?
Well, I can send takedown notices. I have. But the minute one of my books gets removed, another gets put up. It’s a battle, that for most authors, we have to fight every day. There are ‘bots’ that are used by pirates to strip the downloaded book from Amazon, which allow them to then post on these sites. Sometimes, sadly, the leak comes from an ARC team. Fortunately for me, this isn’t the case. I have an incredible ARC team who I trust implicitly. It has happened to other authors and I know for me, if this was the case, it would be the ultimate betrayal. I’m not sure I’d get over it.
It’s a huge problem, massive.
Today, especially, I feel like a very small fish in a big sodding ocean full of sharks.
Still. I am nothing if not determined. I will dust myself off, take a deep breath and keep writing. I won’t let this set me back any longer than it already has.
To those of you out there who have downloaded and purchased books through Amazon or through other, above-board sites. THANK YOU. You are the reason us indie authors write and can continue to write. Ultimately these stories are for you.
To the people who pirate, F&*k you.