A little over one year ago, I started the story of Number Seven when a friend of mine sent me a writing prompt for a contest. That prompt was “Awakenings”, and that’s what I called this story through its entire first draft. What I didn’t quite realize was that Seven’s awakening would lead to an awakening for me, as well.
It took me about six months to write the first draft, then another five or so months to take reader feedback and get it edited. At just about 33,000 words, it’s far short of the 80,000-word average for a novel, meaning that no traditional editor, agent, or publisher would give it the time of day. But I didn’t want to double the length of the story with extraneous subplots or details; I always liked that it read relatively quickly. So when Amorphous Publishing Guild (APG) came to me with an opportunity to self-publish, I took it. With APG, I got to publish my story on my terms. No doubt there are folks out there who think the way I published this story is wrong, hurting my brand, not exposing it to enough readers…but we each have to follow our own paths.
I respect and admire my writer friends who are dedicated to their goals of a book deal and big-time representation. That is impressive! It’s not for me, though. I write stories that speak to and through me, and the strictly business side of publishing doesn’t much interest me. Sure, I’d like to make back in sales what I spent on production and editing costs, but I really like my day job, too. For me, writing stories is about personal joy. By sharing the story, I hope to entertain others and bring them a little bit of joy, too.
Reading the Story
To pick up your own copy of my thriller short story “Number Seven and the Life Left Behind”, choose from the following versions:
- Kindle Version, available from Amazon US, Amazon UK
- Paperback, available from Amazon US, Amazon UK
- For countries not the US or the UK, you can search for “Mayumi Hirtzel”. If the book is not available in your country but you’d still like a copy, let me know in the comments, and I’ll make sure we work something out!
If you decide to give it a read, thank you! I hope you enjoy the story of Seven and his friends. And look for more stories from me in the future!
Just bought it! Can’t wait to read it, and hearty congratulations to you, Mayumi. Self-publishing is a brave choice, I think. Everyone must follow their own path because each destination is so different. Proud of you for finding yours! 🙂
Thank you, Kate!
Your writer’s goals insights and posts have pushed me to reflect a lot on my own journey. I didn’t want to artificially bulk up this story, and without that length, it had little chance of getting any professional interest or attention. But the thought of letting the story just sit on a lonely page on my website or – worse – in a drawer was too painful for me to bear.
I’d love to chat with you about the odd effect of perceived legitimization sometime. Until then, though, I’m glad to hear that folks are taking a chance on the story. I’ll be even happier if they enjoy it, as I hope you will do.
Thank you again!