There are “First Adopters,” brave pioneers who sleep in Best Buy parking lots for weeks in order to be the first to get new techie stuff the minute the stretch-wrap comes off the pallet. But there is no category for the rest of us – Middle, Three-Quarters of the Way and Last Adopters. We aren’t statistically significant. On the other hand, we also aren’t stuck with nine sequential versions of the X-Stream digital waffle iron with built-in GPS.
I’m right down there with the Last Adopters, indeed may be the last, but I’m coming around. Like everyone else on the planet who reads, and especially everyone who writes, I’ve lurked. I’ve watched a publishing industry that’s been around since Gutenberg (1450 C.E.) change overnight. I love trees and rejoiced with them at what digital publishing will do for their numbers. But about my own numbers I remained clueless.
While every author I’ve ever known raced out to design new covers and put at least their backlists up in e-formats, I continued to lurk. I watched the hand writing on the wall and apparently thought, “Gee. A hand is writing on the wall.” Many months would go by before it occurred to me to read the freaking message! Slow, I am slow. The movement of glaciers is fleet in comparison.
But finally I get it. I have a backlist of seven published mysteries, one cool new one that my agent couldn’t sell (too complicated and who’s ever heard of Boston?) and another, new, magical realist series ready to launch one way or another. Except… hey. I don’t have to sit around reading old issues of Field and Stream like I do in my dentist’s office while I wait for something to happen, do I? I can publish whatever I want, whenever I want, myself. Wow.
Stay tuned for Adventures of the Last Adopter, which I envision as something like a marriage of “The Shadow” and “Springtime for Hitler.” Clueless or not , I’m going to publish something!