July 6, 2012 – I just read this news clip on Publishers Weekly about Terry Goodkind’s recent self-publishing success.
Goodkind is a well known fantasy author who’s first book, Wizard’s First Rule, published about 20 years ago. Since that time, he has sold millions of copies of his works. According to Publishers Weekly, his most recent book was self-published in the Kindle Store on July 2 and rose to #28 on the Kindle Bestseller list only 24 hours later.
Does it take a name like Goodkind’s to rise to quick success in world of self-publishing? On his own FAQ page, Goodkind observes that good writing is both rare and easy to spot. I wonder how an author who self-publishes will know if his/her work is of this caliber. Obviously, readers will voice the loudest response to such an inquiry and publishers may weigh in as well.
Does an author ever recover from an unsuccessful first launch in the self-publishing world? I’m just wondering out loud here …
In 2007, Goodkind made an interesting observation about age and story-telling capacity, asserting that life experience is needed to produce a quality story. I’ve heard of young authors who have succeeded in their writing endeavors, but I think I would have to agree completely with Goodkind on this one (even though I’m not yet a published author). As I continue to experience life and come to a deeper understanding of my own thoughts and philosophies, and as I experience the diversity of character and choice that exists in the corpus of people with whom I have interactions, I acquire an ever expanding perspective on the meaning of a rich life.
What I have learned, I can share.
I don’t think this observation means that young authors (to some, I am young) can’t succeed or can’t tell a good story, but I do think it means that young, gifted story-tellers can, with time, become old, exceedingly gifted story-tellers.