Self-Published Fiction Author Writing in Different Genres


Rick Fontes

First let me say that I am alive and well and living in a remote corner of Waller County, Texas. Against all odds I am still happily married and officially retired.

For three decades I schlepped a carload of camera equipment, props and nose wipes from one day care facility to the next. And now I don’t. Instead, I write.

For years I dreamed of becoming a published author. As I traveled the USA, following the photography business, I spent a lot of time in motels. I whiled away most evenings putting words on paper and trying to find ways to interest the mainstream publishing houses in purchasing a manuscript or two.

In the early days I worked with pen and yellow legal pads and would pay someone to type the pages into manuscript form. When the first word processors came onto the market they were virtually no more than typewriters on steroids, a typewriter, monitor and floppy drive. I worked on one of those for a few years until I was able to transition to a computer. Without regard to the mechanics of getting words on paper the one constant was manuscripts out, rejection slips in.

The mainstream publishing houses had a lock on the Industry and it was virtually impossible for an unknown author to gain a nod from any of the established publishers. Years ago, when the population of the United States was three hundred million, the number of writers who made a living solely by writing fiction was three hundred. One in a million. I would imagine that the ratio would still be the same were it not for the innovation that completely changed the dynamic.

The computer age gave us print on demand. With POD anyone could become published and the challenge shifted to marketing. A recent statistic shows that our nation’s independent author pool cranks out a million titles each year while the average indie author sells fewer than a dozen copies of any given book.

This is not surprising what with the vast number of media outlets, entertainment forms and communication channels available. Not surprising but disheartening. Cranking out a novel length manuscript is a daunting task. Not all are masterpieces by any means but each is a labor of love and, truth be known, there are some real jewels languishing in the ocean of unread publications.

My advice to those who still read fiction is that you dive into the indie pool. Once or twice a year select an author unknown to you, one who works in your favorite genre, and give him or her a try. The thrill of discovery is well worth the investment in an occasional dud. This site invites you to take a look at the body of work I have produced in hopes that something there will capture your attention. I welcome your comments and will answer any questions, within the scope of my knowledge, about indie publishing.