As you may or may not know, Hillary and Zack Argyle started an Indie Fantasy Fund. Authors applied for the grant and five were chosen to get $1000 to put toward something like editing, marketing, artwork, audiobooks, etc. The fact of the matter is, going indie is great but it’s not cheap, and this little extra boost can make a whole world of difference to a lot of people.
Surprisingly, Hillary and Zack ended up choosing a sixth person to get this grant and that person ended up being me.
I learned about this not too long ago, and it’s taken me a while to really come to terms with the fact that someone was handing me $1000 to go realize a dream.
So, I’m going to get Of Honey and Wildfires made into an audiobook. I have always thought this book belongs in that format. I think with the right narrator, it would just sing. The issue is…
Well, let me get to that.
The thing is, I have a lot of very severe, very expensive incurable and degenerative health problems. So while I do make a good living off of editing, every red cent I earn gets put right back into my healthcare with a bit left on the side to do things like buy groceries. Mostly, though, my income goes toward healthcare. Even with insurance, healthcare is hard in this country. I have had cancer, on top of my Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome-related health issues, so I’m always paying that off as well as something else (usually a surgery), and then saving for the Next Big Thing (Which, right now, is a CT scan that will cost about $3000 even with insurance, after that? There’s a list.). So while I’ve always wanted an audiobook, due to how expensive it is for me to just LIVE, getting an audiobook is something that absolutely never would have been possible without this grant.
To say this was an unexpected gift is the greatest understatement. When Zack approached me with this, my first instinct was to write him this long, long letter about all the reasons I’m a terrible person to bet on, along with a detailed list of reasons why (I absolutely never do publicity. I don’t even look at my sales so I have no idea if my books are popular or not. I don’t beg for reviews. I just basically write the thing, put it in the world and walk away. None of that makes me a good bet.). Then I had a conversation with two very good friends about this. I said to one of them, “Look, I need to talk to you. This is being offered, and I’m freaking out for all the wrong reasons. Can’t he see I’m nothing? Why would I deserve this?” Basically, I spent an entire twenty-four hour span having this massive existential crises. Once my friends kind of talked me off that particular ledge, I realized this is an opportunity that will never come around again and I’d be a total fool if I passed over it. I’ve always wanted an audiobook, and unless someone throws money at me, it’s just never going to happen because healthcare.
Anyway, now I have this money for an audiobook, and I suddenly realized I have no blooming idea how to go about getting the thing done. I couldn’t begin to tell you what I need to do first. I never researched it because I’d never be in a position to have one, so I just don’t know. I’m completely blank. I listen to a ton of audiobooks (It’s mostly how I do my “fun” reading these days) but I’ve never actually looked into getting one done.
And then I thought, “I can’t be the only person who doesn’t have a clue.”
So I’m going to be documenting my journey getting an audiobook, from the ground up, and I’m going to be very, very honest and transparent with the entire process. I’m going to document my research, my concerns, my pros and cons, what the process is like and more. I figure maybe I can turn my “I don’t have a clue” into a resource for someone else who might find themselves in a similar situation someday.
I’m starting my research now, so I’ll probably start putting posts up in a week or so.
More, Of Honey and Wildfires is actually on sale this week, from May 15-22 for $.99. Awesome timing. So if you want to read the book, check it out here.
So, that’s what you can look forward to. I’m getting an audiobook made of Of Honey and Wildfires, and I’m going to be documenting the entire journey with nauseating detail, from A-Z right here.
Before I go get some work done today, I do want to say something.
I have thanked Hillary and Zack profusely for this, but more, this has been a very hard year and it’s been hard for a lot of reasons. I’ve had some big family stuff to deal with. This war in Ukraine has been tearing me apart (read more here). My own health issues have taken a bit of a turn and I’m looking at a very, very long stretch of some extremely invasive and painful treatments on my spine to hopefully keep me walking for just a little bit longer. It’s going to be an experience and I’m bracing for it.
And it’s been hard.
I want to say that no matter how dark it gets, there’s always light. Sometimes we just have to look for it.
Perhaps, this quote from Of Honey and Wildfires says it best:
“There are good people in this world, silent and stalwart, practicing quiet acts of bravery each and every day.”
And because I believe in paying it forward, I’m going to be donating my editing services to the Indie Fantasy Fund Grant.
Thank you, Zack and Hillary, for giving me an opportunity to realize a dream I never would have been able to otherwise, and thank you both for being a light in the dark.
Readers, watch this space for updates.