I am no expert on author legitimacy. What I do know is that it took me weeks – no, months – to feel legitimate enough to start this site. After years of aspiring and writing and reading most of the web’s collective wisdom on being an author, I found the transition difficult. Who am I to say I’m beyond aspiring? That I am allowed to bear the title AUTHOR?
An author perhaps? No, that can’t be it.
I’ve had a short story available on Amazon for a long while. I published it. It’s short. Nope, no way that counts.
In February, I signed with Anaiah Press for a picture book due in 2015. Hmm. Well, the contract calls me ‘the Author’. But I don’t have a book published yet. It’s a small press, but a press nonetheless. Maybe I should wait a bit before presuming I’m actually a ‘the Author’. Maybe I should wait until the You’re-a-Bona-Fide-Author Squad (sorry, I couldn’t find the link – very secret) knocks on my door. Wouldn’t want to jump the gun. Violate all those unwritten rules. Make the secret-everybody mad. Abuse all the clichés. Not worth the risk.
Also in February, I decided to self-publish a novel through a family owned entity. I hired a cover designer – the fabulous Melissa Stevens at The Illustrated Author. She created a great, soon-to-be-revealed cover and an already-revealed series brand.
I printed beta reader editions and handed them out to total strangers for their May book club. I’m preparing a Kickstarter campaign to fund editing by Chuck Sambuchino and a book trailer by Red 14 Films, plus a printing.
I don’t know. Is effort enough? Do I need someone out there to give me legitimacy, or can I just take it for myself? I mean, surely legitimacy comes well before bestseller status. But does it come after…something?
Yeah, I don’t know. Still, I did change my Facebook identity to Amanda Salisbury Author/Illustrator. I suppose now it’s official.