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Why This Published Author Decided to Self-Publish! By MaryLu Tyndall

Posted by on March 28, 2014

MLtyndall-Headshot2013The writing industry is changing. And in my opinion, for the better! I am the author of more than fourteen novels, all historical romances, all published by Barbour Publishing. I started my career back in 2005 when I received my first contract for a Christian Pirate trilogy, and it’s been a wild ride ever since! A great ride. A fun ride! But, much like a roller coaster, it was a ride I felt I really had no control over. There were highs. There were lows. There were scares and disappointments. And lots of books to write. But it was my publisher and the industry in general that dictated the content of those books.

Before I continue, I must say that I love Barbour. They are a great publishing company filled with honorable, fun, professionals who, I not only loved working with, but who I grew to care for as friends. They’ve been super great to me, and I appreciate them so much. But like any business, they are out to make a profit and as such, must make hard decisions about what type of books they think will make them that profit. I don’t always agree with their decisions, nor with the decisions of most publishers and agents in the industry, but I do understand their trepidation to try something new. Especially in this tough economy.

The problem with this fear is that publishers tend to play it safe and only publish books by authors who are selling well or books in genres that are selling well. They rarely step outside the box and publish something new and interesting, which leaves the reading consumer with so few choices. Most readers don’t understand that when they go to the book store and browse the shelves, they are only seeing a tiny percentage of all the great books that are out there. I’m talking about books that are both published and not published. Even if a book gets published, it isn’t guaranteed a spot in a book store because stores only purchase best-sellers from best-selling authors. Take it from someone who knows this firsthand. Then of course, the great books that never got published don’t stand a chance.

With no insult intended, I liken agents, publishers and book stores to three trolls guarding the bridge that leads to a successful career as an author. They are doing their job. They are keeping unwanted authors from crossing the bridge. At least unwanted in their eyes. But they are also holding back from the reader a host of fantastic books. It took years for me to finally realize this. I was new to the business, naïve, and extremely thankful to have a contract. So, when my publisher told me I couldn’t write about this and I couldn’t write about that, and they wanted stories set in this time period, but not in that time period, I complied because I so desperately wanted to have my writing published. But somewhere along the way after 14 books, I got burned out. I lost my love of writing, my spirit of creativity, and sometimes even my desire to continue.

I believe I had some really cool and unique ideas, but no one seemed interested. Some of them my agent wouldn’t even send to publishers. Others, my publisher rejected. They wanted prairie and Amish stories, they told me, not pirates or mermaids or Vikings or time travel.

Then the E-book craze began. The world of the Kindle and Nook and Ipad, and all of a sudden these online companies made a way for authors to upload and sell their own work! And I found myself getting excited. Finally I could write what I wanted to write, what I was passionate abTheRansom-FrontCoverFinalout, what inspired me. Finally I could read books that interested me, in time periods that interested me. Yes, readers must be much wiser in their decisions. Lots of amateur writers are throwing junk out there, but lots of great writers are putting their masterpieces out there too.

I have just written and published my very first self-pubbed novel, The Ransom, a clean adventurous pirate story filled with love and romance. I hope you’ll check it out.

In the meantime, it’s a new world for both writers and readers. An adventurous world, and in my opinion, a far better one!

The Ransom

Can a woman run a business and provide for a family in Jamaica in1692? Juliana Dutton intends to find out. With an ailing father and a wastrel for a brother, she has no choice.  But she must keep her activities a secret or face destitution. When a nosey suitor threatens everything, she spurns him and instead becomes engaged to the town idiot, Lord Munthrope. But is he an idiot? The more her problems push her closer to the man, the more she realizes he is not who he seems.

Alexander Hyde, the Pirate Earl, is the most feared pirate in the Caribbean—feared, successful, wealthy, handsome, and bored, so terribly bored. When an unexpected event allows him to get close to Juliana, a woman he has loved from afar for years, he takes it. But leading a double life causes more problems than it’s worth.  A restless crew and a long-time enemy out to capture and hang Alex, put Juliana in grave danger.

As tremors rock the city of Port Royal, Juliana’s faith in God is equally shaken. Not only have things gotten worse, but she is confused by her feelings for both Munthrope and the Pirate Earl. Deception, intrigue, mutiny, death, betrayal, all attempt to tear the lovers apart. But the final blow comes when a massive earthquake strikes the city and threatens to sink it into the sea.


Best-selling author, MaryLu Tyndall dreamt of pirates and sea-faring adventures during her childhood days on Florida’s Coast. With more than fourteen books published, she makes no excuses for the deeply spiritual themes embedded within her romantic adventures. Her hope is that readers will not only be entertained but will be brought closer to the Creator who loves them beyond measure. In a culture that accepts the occult, wizards, zombies, and vampires without batting an eye, MaryLu hopes to show the awesome present and powerful acts of God in a dying world. A Christy award nominee, MaryLu makes her home with her husband, six children, and several stray cats on the California coast.

Other posts you might like:

MaryLu Tyndall Invites Magnolia Scott from Elusive Hope to IC

An Interview with Eliza Crawford from the Novel, “Forsaken Dreams,” by MaryLu Tyndall

An Interview with MaryLu Tyndall

13 Responses to Why This Published Author Decided to Self-Publish! By MaryLu Tyndall

  1. Kristen Steele

    Self-publishing gives authors complete control over what they write. This is very refreshing! Of course there is a lot of work that goes into self-publishing outside of writing the actual book. You need to be ready to dedicate time and money to promoting it.

  2. MaryLu

    I couldn’t agree more, J. Downey. There are so many GREAT books out there now that wouldn’t normally have seen the light of day. It gives the reader so many options. I’m seriously thinking about that mermaid story! 🙂

  3. MaryLu

    Thank you so much, Meghan! Yes I do get to keep quite a bit more of the profits this way. 😉 But I also risk more.. and invest more, so I DO understand why publishers keep most of the profits.. I’m excited that I get to write what God puts on my heart now and not cater to anyone but Him! I’m so glad you enjoyed The Ransom! Yes, more stories like it are on the way!

  4. Connie Almony

    Maxie, You may try going to your Kindle library through “Manage My Kindle.” There is a button to the right that says “action.” Click on that and then on “Deliver to my…” If you have more than one choice, it makes me wonder if it’s set up right. I have two computers, a Kindle and an Android device on mine. But if you’ve only just started using Kindle, you shouldn’t have all those. Either way, try clicking on the name of your device. If you’re not sure, try each until it shows up. Give it a few minutes first though. If that doesn’t work, contact Amazon and see if they can help. You’ll want to have an ereader. It will broaden your selection of good reads now that great authors, like MaryLu, are going “indie.”

  5. J. Downey

    I’d love to see a christian book about mermaids. I hope one is coming soon. I think the indie revolution is the best thing that happened for readers. I’m loving all the unique books with different twists and turns being published.

  6. Meghan

    Thank you for sharing the insights! Random is one of my favorites of yours (I have read all of them), so if that’s what I get to look forward to I’m excited! I also like the fact that you hopefully will get to keep more of what I pay for the book because you’re worth it!!! May Father bless the work of your hands 🙂 Because those works are definitely blessing us 😉

  7. MaryLu

    Hi Maxie!
    Thanks for your comment. I’m so sorry you’re having trouble getting Kindle to work. Every time you buy a Kindle book, it should go right to your Kindle. I don’t know what’s happening. Do you have a techy person in your family? Maybe they can help. Anyway, Self-publishers can also offer paperbacks, which I’m doing as well. They tend to be a couple dollars more than a traditionally published paperback, but it’s not a huge leap in price. I still enjoy reading paperbacks, myself. God bless you!!

  8. Maxie Anderson

    MaryLu, I never realized that the agents and publishers told you what you had to write and what Genre it had to be, until I met so many Authors online. That seems so wrong. Love, Maxie

  9. Maxie Anderson

    Hello MaryLu. I enjoyed your post. Very interesting. I think it is great for you to write what you really want to and glad you can self-publish. I just hate it has to be this way. The only way I can do e-books is by PDF or with the Cloud Reader on Amazon Library. I finally have a Kindle PaperWhite that was given me for Christmas. Just finally had someone set it up for me. But I am really bad about learning all of this new Electronic stuff. Really!!! I can’t hardly do anything with it. I thought you could hook it into your computer and download a book you won’t to buy. But, guess not. Anyway, I can’t get a book to go to my Kindle. When I tried on Amazon, it automatically puts it in my Amazon Library. Oh my! It says in the manuel that you have to go to Kindle books. So if they quit having paperbacks It will be bad. Can you also make print books? Thanks for this info and may GOD continue to lead you and bless your work. I love all of your Bible stuff on your posts. Maxie mac262(at)me(dot)com

  10. MaryLu

    Hi Ladies! Thanks for dropping by.!! June, you have me intrigued. I love Fairy tales, Once Upon a Time is one of my favorite shows. Are you seeking a traditional publisher?

    Rachael, thanks for purchasing my book! I really really appreciate your support. I hope you enjoy the story. 🙂

    Connie, thanks so much for having me here! Have a great weekend!!

  11. June Foster

    MaryLu, as an author seriously considering doing more self-publishing, I greatly appreciate your post. My author friends on Infinite Characters are publishing our novellas based on fairy tales. So far Connie and I have finished ours.

  12. Connie Almony

    Rachael, Thanks for supporting authors who “lay it on the line.” I’ve read The Ransom, and as much as I’ve loved MaryLu’s other books, this one may just be the best!!! Hard to say when they are all so good.

  13. Rachael Merritt

    I bought this book. Many books I wait and buy used. However, when you announced about self publishing it made me want to buy the book more. Mostly because I know I’m supporting the author. Another author I love just self published for the first time, I will make sure I get and promote it as well. As a reader, it means more to me if an author is willing to ” lay it on the line” so to speak to write their own stories! I wish you every success in your new venture.