Spotlight: Indie Dependency by Christina McMullen

This week the Spotlight is on Christina McMullen, a self proclaimed oddball and
science fiction/fantasy author who would like to remind her future robot overlords that she remains loyal despite her latest tech mishaps.

So without further ado, I present:

A Cautionary Tale of Indie Dependency by Christina McMullen


Last week, my Nexus 7 tablet decided to make an early journey to electronic gadget heaven, which prompted me to have a week-long freak out session. This prompted most people around me to go from, “Wow, that sucks. I’m so sorry,” to “Okay, seriously, get over it. It was a tablet, not a pet. Go buy a new one.” And then there was that one friend who called it, first world problems. Which on one hand, is true. After all, did you know that your score on Bubble Shooter does not carry over to another device? Four hundred levels down the drain.

However on a more serious note, I’m an independent author. I didn’t just lose a toy. I lost a valuable tool that I’m finding difficult to replace. I had several uses for my tablet, from editing, to keeping my social media separate from my work computer, to backing up files, and even creating files that would be used for covers. I got lucky in that I didn’t lose anything that was truly irreplaceable, but it did slow down my productivity while I scrambled for a new plan.

And this got me thinking. We’re told countless times to back up, back up, and back up our work some more. This is truly great advice and as part of my paranoid nature, I’ve taken this to heart. While I lost everything I had backed up on my tablet, I still have everything on my computer, on my Google Drive, in emails to myself, on an external hard drive, and on my phone. While you don’t have to go quite as crazy as me, keeping backups is something that I can’t stress enough to indie authors. But there’s more to life than backing up our manuscript.

We are independent. We get to make our own decisions, publish books on our own terms, cut out the middleman, and bring our product directly under the noses of our public. Great, right? Sure! But there’s a flip side to this. We’re independent. When something breaks, we have to fix it or replace it. We don’t have an IT department. There’s no purchase order that we can put in for an upgrade if our computer is getting old. It’s all on us and when something goes all splody, we have to make the decision as to whether we are going to replace it or live without.

See, it’s not just about backing up. All the backing ups in the world couldn’t save my poor tablet. Actually, considering it was likely a faulty motherboard, nothing could have saved my tablet and I’m still wrestling with whether or not I want to replace it. But you can prepare for the inevitable. You’ve heard the cliché: Live each day as if it was your last. Yeah, I know. You probably roll your eyes every time Aunt Gertrude posts that to her Facebook and misattributes it to Marilyn Monroe, but there’s something to it. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not advocating for YOLO or whatever the cool kids say today before they rob the corner liquor store and run naked through the town square. Rather, I’m going to amend that statement for us indies: Live each day as if your hard drive is about to explode.

Yes, it’s important to back up your manuscript, but let’s face it, there’s so much more to being an indie than writing books. Have you backed up your promotional flyers and photos? How about your cover files? Do you have any marketing obligations coming up and if so, how would you go about fulfilling them if you lost your phone/computer/etc? Me? I made a snap decision to buy a new tablet, hated it, took it back, bought a Kindle, cried about how it isn’t a tablet, cursed Google and Asus until I was hoarse and lost all of the karma I had previously built up with our future overlords, and eventually decided to accept that it wasn’t coming back from the dead. I didn’t have a plan, but you can bet your sweet bippy that I do now. Especially as I sit typing this on my five year old laptop that is getting awfully warm.

Thanks Christina, we can all sympathize with technology woes and hope this week, you have a better week.

To get more of Christina McMullen, check out Amazon and Goodreads for all of her highly entertaining books. And her newest release, You Wish, is also now available:
description -Amazon link -Goodreads link

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SK Thomas is a writer, author, book reviewer and the curious creative complex brain behind this blog. Connect at or to learn more about her Pawned Queen Thriller/Mystery series.
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Published on June 25, 2015 10:42 • 760 views • Tags: authors, backup, blog, honest, indie-author, raw, readers, real, storytelling, tablet, technology, telling-stories, writers
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