Ride the waves of your writing career! Being a writer, is not unlike being a bipolor, manic-depressive. Would you not agree? One minute, you are full of emotion, supercharged with motivation, and typing away furiously on the computer with your latest story idea. The next, you are staring at the computer wondering why no one has like your brilliant tweet or blog post. Can you relate to this juxtaposition?
Many writing coaches and publishers will tell you, the writing is easy. It is marketing yourself and your work that is the killer. It is flat out exhausting. Tweeting, facebooking, links, and hashtags. Talk, talk, talking about your book to grocery store workers, women at the salon, book clubs, book signings, and book festivals. Seemingly, there are not enough hours in the day. This constant demand on your time can fuel the rollarcoaster of emotions. You, like your public will find that you vassilate between self confidence and self-flaggelation. You are not alone.
Recently, there was a presentation at the Lexicon Writer’s conference entitled, Marketing your business on a shoestring, by Julie Hall, owner of Custom Websites 2 Go. She talked about the importance of getting the word out there constantly about your book, especially with the short attention spans of your potential buyers. At some point, you might consider investing in a service that would help you automate your tweets and generate connections for yourself. If you are Twitter naive or Facebook naive, take a course. Only you can make your facebook and blog postings personal. But at some point you have to care for yourself too. Research and invest on small business that specialize in promotion of writers. Several have been mentioned in previous posts (Ralphs Designs and Deli; AskthepublishingGuru; AuthorMedia).
In utilizing these specialized services, they can help extend the connections that will make an impact for your book and your sanity. The hard part is patience. It can take from three to six weeks for the results of your marketing to show. Not every effort, or blog post, or tweet will “go viral.” Don’t you secretly wish they would? But stay the course. Keep putting one foot in front of the other. Pay it foward by supporting other authors. Like pages you really like! Retweet posts that mean something to you. But be genuine! Establish your voice and brand. Don’t just “like” to “like.” Make those followup phonecalls; log those book signings and book festivals; and keep on writing.
The waves of emotion come in whether your book or poem is praised or rejected. You surf to Amazon hoping to see likes, wait on baited breath to see your book review, or eat a tub of Ben and Jerry’s after reading a not-so-positive review. One minute you are being praised at a signing. The next minute no one opened your mass email containing your book reviews. It happens.
The biggest lesson, which is the hardest of all? Don’t be afraid of the big coaster. The journey up it can be terrifying, but the payoff for your efforts is a huge, exhilarating high at the end.