Self publishing is an industry that for years was filled with talented writers who were unable to get their work into a book store. As ereaders like the Kindle Fire became common place the world of publishing changed immensely giving new authors a chance to reach a larger audience. Even with this greater exposure the average self published author often found themselves unable to sell more than a handful of books. Why do the more talented, yet unappreciated, authors continue to persevere regardless of the odds? They each hope to become a break out success like Andy Weir the author of The Martian.
The Martian was initially published in 2011, Weir first distributed his work of science fiction on his website. The books meticulous attention to scientific detail and the obvious amount of research used to create the novel led to Weir choosing to self publish the book through Amazon’s Kindle platform. Once The Martian was exposed to a wider audience it quickly became a bestseller on Kindle.
Three years following the initial publication of the Kindle version of the book Weirs new publishing company (Weir sold the rights to Crown Publishing Group) released the book in print. Since The Martian’s 2014 print release the book has remained a bestseller that is praised by readers and critics. The film rights were optioned by 20th Century Fox and now fans of the book are eagerly awaiting the October 2, 2015 release of The Martian film directed by Ridley Scott and starring Matt Damon.
The story of The Martian’s creation and publication history is one that should motivate self published authors to continue writing and promoting their works. While these success stories are not common place they are certainly increasing as more readers become comfortable purchasing books from self published authors.