• Bridges Washington

First-time Indie Author Journey

Updated: Dec 20, 2019

In the course of pursuing my first published book, I, like many others, have cruised the web looking for all manner of insights. While there are plenty of decent resources out there, I find it intriguing that most of them paint broad strokes — a great many ideas with few actual details or pitfalls one might encounter along this journey. With this in mind, I will share with you some of my lessons learned, thus far, so that others may benefit from successes and failures.

With that in mind, in the not too distant past, I was again placed in the responsible role of handling the affairs of an elder whose capacities were beginning to fail them. The events surrounding this latest situation were the inspiration for my non-fiction title Death and Taxes: Fallout from the Baby Boom. This would be the third generation that placed me at the head table for life's final act. While I wasn't looking forward to the idea, this, as they say, was not my first rodeo, so I have dealt with nearly all of the circumstances that unfolded before. The one aspect that made this situation different is that there was a type 'A' personality who thought they should be steering the boat this time.

This person would not accept that they were cast in a supporting role by the producer of this show. They went out of there way to play dumb, plead ignorance, etc. at nearly every turn to insert themselves into the role they thought they should have. Finally, when they conceded that they were not in control, they excused themselves from the rest of the show. Thus, the book was born as a means of personal therapy to vent all of the contemptuous behavior that had only served to compound an already stressful situation. So, after pounding out over 20,000 words, I decided to let my rant evolve into something far more productive than where I started so that others may dodge some of these bullets.

At this point, I decided to not only focus upon my observations from this merry-go-round but also the circumstances surrounding how I landed in this position for the third time. I then spent several months doing a bunch of research, not so much about the obvious hurdles one would encounter in end-of-life scenarios, but more the social situation that would land someone in my position, at least once, and possibly multiple times. After all this work, I had generated about a dozen infographics and over 50,000 words.

About two-thirds of the way through the writing of this first title, some of the circumstances that placed me in these situations spawned the idea of another title. The second title will still focus upon issues between generations; only the next one will focus upon less taboo subjects. If you look at the usage statistics, the word death has been declining in usage for years. Many people like to indulge in all manner of fictional works regarding deaths occurring in many forms, some based in reality, others based in pure fantasy, the truth, however, is something that can hit you in the face like a brick. Watching, helpless, as a loved one draws their last breath is an experience that few will ever actually witness. Getting word from a medical professional, family member, or perhaps close friend that someone that you have not known life without is an experience most will have, but bearing witness is an entirely different experience.

Given that I had decided that a second book would likely happen soon, it seemed prudent to create a business to separate my personal finances from those related to the idea of publishing a few works. Now we move on to creating a Limited Liability Company (LLC) for the sake of the writing business.

And the story continues...

Please let me know if this post gave you something to consider in the comments below. Good or bad let me know what you think, this is about starting a dialogue. If this post made you think about your own relationships or those of someone you know like and share it with them. If you are interested in other topics check out some of my previous posts and subscribe to get email notifications of new posts.

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