The Martian: Self-published to Book and Movie Deal

Andy Weir’s The Martian is one of those success stories that indie authors love to hear about, or rather, would love to happen to them.

You see, Andy Weir started out by posting chapters of The Martian on his blog for anyone to read for free.  He then decided to sell it for $0.99 on Amazon. Then things got crazy. It was so popular that it got picked up by a traditional publisher, and then within a week, he had a movie deal. And now that the movie’s coming out, it appears that critics are saying this may be one of the best movies of the year.


Read about the whole story here. What I wrote above is just a highly condensed version. And here’s the movie trailer.

This should give hope to a lot of indie authors who want to make it big. It can happen. But they have to be realistic. This kind of thing is extremely rare. I would love for something like this to happen to me, of course. I think any indie author would love it.

As for the book (and the movie), the things I hear about it is that the science used in the story is what sets it apart from many other science fiction novels. It uses real science. I love that kind of science fiction. It’s one reason I loved Kim Stanley Robinson’s Red Mars.

Any indie authors out there hoping for Andy Weir-like success?

9 thoughts on “The Martian: Self-published to Book and Movie Deal”

  1. I didn’t know Andy had self published. Good for him. I suppose if someone wanted to make one of my short stories into an animated short and make me rich and famous I’d somehow be okay with that.

  2. From what I have seen of the movie trailer, it looks excellent. It’s the sort of author success story that we all dream of. But the chances of it happening, I suspect, are low. The big challenge is always discovery and I suspect that there are quite a few really great novels that have been self-published and are currently sitting in no-visit land.

  3. I don’t think I’d be comfortable with that level of exposure. I don’t write the most tasteful stories in the world, anyway, but if people fell in love with the world and the characters the way that I did to Weir’s level of fame… I think I’d die a little on the inside.

    And then get cracking on self publishing my next novel because traditional publishing really isn’t the world for me. Or at least it’s not my goal.

    1. I think I’d most likely feel quite self-conscious if it happened to me, but only at first. It takes me time to get used to attention. But once I get it, I find that I can get into it. It’s starting that’s the problem. Same thing happened with teaching English for me.

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