8th May, 09:10
Good morning one and all!
I still can’t believe we’re in May!? A new month means new goals, new ideas and, of course, new blog posts; this week’s post covers 5 hurdles I’ve experienced as a new author that I completely wasn’t prepared for! So, use this as a head’s-up if you’re soon to be published, or maybe a comparison if you already are – how does your experience differ from mine? As an unpublished/ previously published author, did you find anything not mentioned in my list a particular difficulty? Let me know!
1. The Workload
Ok, so I thought that the hardest part of the whole publishing process would be done and dusted once final edits had been completed. How wrong I was! Once your book is out there, you don’t just get to sit back with a cocktail in hand watching the sales pour in – unfortunately! Far from it. I’m not saying post-publication is as writing-heavy as pre (obviously) but they’re pretty similar in terms of workload. Once your book is published, though the manuscript is done, your job is to now get it out there for the world to see! So, forget being hunched over a Word document for 5 hours straight – the job now entails researching and contacting reviewers, looking into your market, promoting your work via social media, in person and on websites, PLUS a bunch of other stuff! So, yeah, first and foremost I was NOT prepared to jump over the workload hurdle once published!
2. How To Get Reviews
This one took many forms with me. To be honest, I just assumed pretty much everyone who read Beyond would review it – and how wrong I was! And, apart from hassling people constantly and feeling like a damn annoyance, there’s no easy way to obtain reviews from the general readers. Sidenote: I was not prepared for the amount of family and friends that SAID they would review and didn’t. Or the amount that DID review but Amazon removed them! (But, agh, that’s a whole other rant for a whole other day).
This is something I’m sure every creator gets, whether they make art, clothes, stories you name it! People are always looking for a freebie. The amount of friends/family members that assumed or even asked outright for free copies truly shocked me! And it’s a pretty awkward convo when you say no…
4. The Marketing
Something I’ve found a hurdle is the fact that – though you can work super hard on your social media, blogs etc – you as an author don’t have THAT much to do with the actual marketing of your book. No, that lies in the hands of your publisher. And even when I’m constantly Googling, researching, thinking of new ways to promo Beyond, they’re things I a) have to run by the publishers first and b) to be honest, don’t make much of an impact on sales as far as I know. Marketing is such a tricky minefield, which I didn’t expect it to be.
5. The Pace
And, finally, the pace of what follows. I am published through an indie publisher and a first time author, so I always knew Beyond wouldn’t be an overnight success (no matter how good it is!). I was prepared for that. I guess what I wasn’t prepared for was how slow the journey sometimes feels. I mean, it’s taken me MONTHS to get more than 30 reviews, despite (as I said!) family members, friends, beta readers and reviewers saying they will post a review. People let you down, I guess. And, I dunno, it’s hard to keep chugging away, looking for fresh promo ideas and shoving your book in everyone’s faces when sometimes it feels like a waste of time.
Ok, that was a bit of a downer end but I’m sure we’ve all been there! I’m just going to keep plugging away and trying new things to get my book out there and noticed. And, no matter how many reviews it has or how many get sold, I am still super proud of myself and my work – and you should be proud of yours too!
You can buy Beyond here.