I don't make excuses. I never will, so you won't hear anything like that from me here.
But I do have to apologize...and I hope you will continue to dive into the worlds that I have spent so much of my adult life cultivating.
Independent publishing is a tough business. Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, etc. have given authors a real opportunity to do something wonderful. No longer do we have to spend weeks, months, or even years searching for a literary agent or a publishing house that will take us under their wing. We can now publish with only a few clicks and watch as our cherished works are spread across the nation and, perhaps, the world.
However, the onus is almost all on the author. We must edit, proof, format, design, and market our work without any sort of help, unless it is financially viable to do so. For most of us, this is not. We are start-ups that are doing everything ourselves. Readers expect a pristine manuscript, an appealing cover, and a well-formatted novel that does not distract from the story. All of this is more than reasonable for novel readers. Regardless of an author's resources, it is imperative to uphold these rules when publishing a novel. Otherwise, reviews will be bad and your novel simply won't sell.
So here it goes: I am sorry to say that I have published my novel, The Edge of a New Beginning, with some relatively blatant proofreading errors. Regardless of the reason for this (like I said, no excuses), I am totally embarrassed to have sold/given so many of you a copy of The Edge of a New Beginning that is not of an appropriate caliber.
I want to say thank you to those of you who praised the novel as something worth reading despite its problems. There are so many reviews and ratings on Amazon that make me feel so proud to be a writer. To be able to write stories and share them with so many people is exactly why I do what I do. You all are amazing. I also want to thank those of you who shared your negative opinions about my work. I am not one to shy away from criticism. In fact, I embrace it. Because of you, I was able to spot the problems with TEOANB (yes, I was unaware. Otherwise, they would have been fixed long before now). Although I obviously do not wish for negativity, I am grateful that people speak up when they feel I have done them a disservice.
This weekend has been a time for me to reflect, to allow myself time to feel embarrassed, and also a time to regroup amidst a not-so-comfortable situation. Proofreading errors is not who I am. It's obviously not a part of my publishing process, but I also understand that becoming a well-established author means taking these sorts of things in stride. I've always held myself up to extreme standards. These kinds of things should not happen. Ever.
If you've read this far, thank you. You have given my writing a chance that, quite frankly, some don't think I deserve. I want you to know one thing - I am never going to stop writing. No matter how many roadblocks or obstacles I come across during this crazy journey, I will always get back up and grind. Nothing will keep me from sharing the stories in my head.
I am a writer through and through. Part of who I am will always be tied to that. I urge you - give my novel a shot. If you still don't like it, that's cool, to each his own, but please, if you have any urge to enjoy the first installment of a great story, don't hesitate. Review and critique it later. I'll be here ready to take it - good or bad.
Lastly, if you feel that I have done you a disservice with The Edge of a New Beginning, please do not hesitate to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will be happy to send you a digitally revised eBook copy void of errors. Please write DIGITAL EBOOK in the subject line, so I will know.
Thank you all for your continued readership. It is because of you that I can do what I can do. Onward into the Great Unknown!
- R.T. Donlon