Why the SIA Mods are Thankful for SIA
What I like the most about this fabulous group is that we can all be ourselves. There's no need to wear a mask, unless it's Halloween of course. We can ask questions and expect honest answers without the complimentary snarky replies that too often plague other groups. And not only there's always someone ready to help but it's probably the most well-behaved group on the planet! I'm dead serious. So what more can a moderator ask?
This group has helped me a ton. Seriously, I don't know about the rest of you all, but when I first stumbled across this group, I was floudering. Trying to find a way to get the word out about my books, without breaking any of the unwritten "rules" of publishing.
Needless to say, I managed to break almost all of them anyways.
But that's okay! This group has been like a rock under my feet, keeping me steadied on the right course. I've met lots of new authors, and read some amazing books.
Ann was my first friend from here, the one who started it all. I asked her one day if she would like help with the group, and then BOOM! it exploded.
So my first Goodreads friend was made in this group, the first of many in a long line now. I welcome them all, because it's the people in our lives that keep the world going round. I welcome new friends, and hope you all find your own here.
-Riley Amos Westbrook-
"The SIA has provided me a safe place to meet individuals I can relate to, who understand all that encompasses being an indie author, from its good points, to its struggles and through this group I’ve been able to learn so many things about being indie, things I didn’t know before.
If I ever have worries, come into difficult situations in regards to being an author, or just want to chat with like minded people, I have somewhere to go."
"Being a member of Support for Indie Authors is giving me a chance to see a positive community grow. I joined when we were still in the lower hundreds of members and now it has grown to nearly four thousand! It's wonderful to see a community of people come together to
be supportive and offer one another advice and guidance, especially when the main goal is a positive one - to get more great books out there!
Without Support for Indie Authors I would likely not have found the books of some of my current favorite authors. Back when I was younger and was only dreaming of being an author, I used to have visions of one day meeting my literary heroes and having dinner with them. But, now I communicate with some of my current favorite authors almost on a daily basis!
I have learned that the myth that Indie Authors can't write a decent book is unfounded and ridiculous. I've read some wonderful and amazing books by members of this group."
"I confess that I joined Goodreads as another place to promote my first book. I soon joined a group, “Sci-Fi, fantasy and speculative Indie Authors Review.” Where I discussed my book cover, blurb and free sample with other authors, in a “better reads” project. I actually stumbled into SIA by following another author’s comment in a group thread and I joined the group just to “put my tuppence in.”
I haven’t looked back. I quickly found a whole community of self published authors, sharing their experience, talking about writing, editing, publishing and promoting. All things that while exciting, the new author can find intimidating, if not overwhelming.
The content in the threads within the group was varied. One day there would be a thread discussing that ‘unease’ I felt, facing the dark material that came out of my own head in parts of my book. The next there would be a thread discussing British English versus American English and not just ‘grey’ or ‘gray,’ ‘colour’ or ‘color,’ but nuances in the local understanding of the word. Then people would share experiences of paid adverstising or goodread giveaways and so it continued.
Of course as you share with people over the net you build friends. These may be ‘internet friends,’ physically a world apart, but there is value in that for a lone author.
SIA is a site where you can discuss problems that you are having, problems that may lie in store for you and problems you can avoid. What more could a beginning author ask for?
Thank you SIA. Thank you SIA members."
- Anthony Deeney -
"Why am I grateful for the SIA? Why wouldn't I be? Being a full time indie author is tough. At times it can be overwhelming. And more often than not, it's lonely work. Having an amazing resource like this group is not something I can take for granted.
Yes, I am constantly amazed by the wealth of knowledge our contributors are willing to share with one another. Nothing makes me happier than knowing something I added helped someone else. But some days... Some days I just need that reminder that I am *not* alone. That others out there share the same joys as well as the same frustrations that I do.
That, more than anything, is what I am grateful for. The virtual 'break room' where I can go when I need to stop being alone in my own head. I won't say that you guys keep me sane (I am an author, after all), but you contribute to my well-being."
- Christina McMullen -
So much has happened in so short a time, it’s hard to really put it in perspective. Since February of this year, I’ve been a part of something much bigger than myself. As a lifelong loner who avoided groups and group activities like a bagful of angry bees, this is all very new to me.
With the world of publishing seeming like a veritable minefield of negativity and rejection, I struck out solo, with guitar and katana in hand, hoping the trek would lead to treasure and not get me killed in the process.
So imagine my surprise when a stray comment on somebody’s Twitter leads me to make a connection with someone who would go on to change everything. You see, this lady had a few interesting books under her belt, which she’d managed to write while having a family, no less. She had a plan, a wild and crazy-in-that-raccoon-left-out-in-the-sun kind of endeavour. Not only was she going to start a posse of fellow wanderers, but darn-tootin’ she was gonna hitch up those wagons and start a caravan off to Authortown.
Eyeing the road ahead and thinking she was just a bit ambitious, I asked her what that was going to be.
“It’s going to be a safe place,” she said, “somewhere where all the people like us could find support and encouragement.”
“Ain’t no such place,” I said, to which she smiled.
“That’s because I’m going to put together a team to build it,” she said, “you want in?”
I spin the chamber on my Self-Defence Mechanism ~ the revolver I call Cynicism.
“Are you sure you want to do this?”
You could fall flat on your face. And I don’t want to make that trip.
“It’s not going to be easy, I know. But I think it could make a difference. Who knows how many other wanderers are out there. This could be their home. A place for them to share their stories. To laugh and cry and grow. Maybe one day, we could put up signs, build a railroad to our town. Then the world would come to us. Because we’d have the best tall tales to tell.”
I squint at her. She really believes it. But do I?
I look out at the desert. Mighty lonely out there for a Cowboy-Ninja, even with my Cynicism. All it does is keep me from caring, from trying. It’s an excuse.
So I holster it.
And bring out my katana. It gleams in the sunlight and sends a sliver across her face. It’s polished and clean, the handle bears my initials: V.M.
“V.M. Sawh,” I put my hand out, which she shakes, “pleased to meet ya. How can I help?”
That was almost 1 year ago.
I sit back in my chair, overlooking the town that many hands built. There are other sheriffs here too: a Wizard named Fry, a Bouncing Artist named BB, a Strongman named Riley, and a Cranky Killbot named Christina. Every day they manage to make me smile. And they are there to guide me home anytime I feel like I’m back out in the desert, hopelessly lost. They are some of the most interesting people I have ever met. They too came to help build the town and manage the people.
The bustling streets are full of eager authors, walking, skipping or dancing by. Some have thunderclouds over their heads, some - rainbows. Each tells a story that makes me feel. Every now and then, I lend a helping hand, when it’s asked for, sometimes when it’s not. The people, these writers, pick themselves up out of the mud and dust. They persevere. They grow. I learn from them all the time and I think I’m a better man for it.
Railroad’s built now and I’m damned proud of it.. We’ve got people hopping on the train, leaving the town for bigger and better things. New visitors are arriving every day, booking rooms and asking to stay. Everyone is welcome. We’ve got a sign up at the entrance to town: Support Indie Authors.
Even though sometimes I linger in the shadows, and barely make my presence known, I know all I have to do is reach out and say hello, to know I’m no longer alone.
And that’s why I’m thankful to be a part of the S.I.A.
- V.M. Sawh -
I'm not even sure how to follow that up. Comment below if you want to pressure VM and the other SIA mods to continue with this chapter series on the SIA Mod's Western Journey.
As for me, there are a lot of reasons why I'm thankful for the SIA. There are far too many for me to list them all out, so instead, I'll just focus on the one big point.
SIA is a place where thousands of individuals strive to eradicate negativity.
That's it in a nutshell. Planet Earth is a highly negative place. Sure there are areas where you can go and smile, joke, and laugh, where dreams and ambitions are still encouraged, and can openly show warmth and affection towards others, but they are becoming few and far between. Even at family gatherings it seems near impossible to be yourself and feel accepted.
So that's what I set out to create. A place where you can be you and not be afraid of the consequences (unless of course, "you" is a highly negative and vindictive critical personae who likes to berate others). Support Indie Authors is a place where you can ask questions, seek advice, and have friendly and constructive interactions with other indie authors. We encourage you to dream big, take risks, laugh with others about mistakes that we've all made, and grow as an author.
So thank you. You're brave, encouraging, kind, and are working to become the best author you can be. We couldn't do any of this without you.