Sunday, February 14, 2016

A Note to New Authors

                                                         May 28, 2015 Late Afternoon

I'd been nervously sitting at my laptop for what seemed like hours contemplating an action that could potentially be life changing. Finally, I  began to feel foolish and decided I couldn’t postpone the inevitable. I took a deep breath, and clicked. And just like that, I published my first novel.

In retrospect, this was a fairly anticlimactic moment as things in my life pretty much remained the same. And now I was no longer simply a writer. I was the one person sales & marketing team for my novel as I entered a new world full of uncertainties, contradictions and every once in a while, victories. And I’ve learned to celebrate even the smallest victories.

I'm currently in the process of revising my third novel, California Girl, in my series, Fall Again. I’ve had time to reflect on lessons learned from my first two novels and am looking forward to my next book’s publication with confidence and excitement-- instead of trepidation.

 Since I'm a fairly new author myself, I’d like to pass on a few things I've learned to new authors.

Mentors Rock. I was grateful to have two published authors, (one in my genre), as mentors who led me through the publishing process and held my hand when necessary. These people had been where I was and understood everything I was going through artistically, emotionally and technically. 

Have a marketing plan. Do your research and have a plan. There are so many aspects of publishing (traditional & self -publishing) that are beyond your control. Having a good marketing plan will help you maintain some amount of control and sanity. There is a plethora of free information online. (The Create Space Community & a Yahoo group, as well as other authors have been invaluable resources.

What works for one author won’t necessarily work for another. Marketing is a tricky endeavor, and nothing is guaranteed. I've often described marketing as a Rubik's Cube--a puzzle with many solutions. Find the one(s) that work for you.

Imagine my surprise when I learned
 YouTube star GloZell
read and enjoyed my book.
Don’t expect your closest friends and family to review or even read your book. This was a hard one for me since I just assumed that those who had cheered me on during the writing process would be my first readers. Once I published, some of these people never mentioned my book again! Don’t ruin relationships. Do remember to thank those who read, and especially those who post reviews.

Remember, you have a life beyond your book. Don’t forget your spouse, children and pets. Remember to eat right, exercise and sleep. In short, take care of yourself. You and those around you will be happier!

Enjoy the ride! Publishing a book is a major accomplishment that many only dream and talk about…but you actually did it! Congrats.

Danni: my loyal office manager
As I wrote Fall Again, I never thought about publishing, marketing or sales. My primary goal was to create a story and characters that people would enjoy.

Three weeks after I published Fall Again: Beginnings, I received a note via my website:
I have fallen in love with the characters in this novel and anxiously waiting for Lost Boy. Any idea when it might be released? Absolutely beautiful novel!!

 I couldn’t have been happier!

Congratulations...and don’t forget to enjoy the ride!

The Fall Again Series





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