Are you confused about marketing? I sure am! Everywhere I look there seems to be another article or suggestion about how to market your book. Well-meaning authors offer aid on various websites and Facebook pages. I am so appreciative of the help, but I find myself scurrying off in all directions checking out links and writing queries for reviews, guest blogging spots and the like. I never imagined it would be like this.
I have had some of the same reservations about self-publishing that everyone else does. The biggest drawback to me seems to be the marketing issue. While I love the creative side – the writing and research, I dislike having to tell the whole world what a great writer I am and why they should read my book.
I know that I should disassociate myself from the “me” aspect, but it’s hard. I believe my book is great or I wouldn’t have published it. If it were someone else’s book I’d have no problem telling all my friends and everyone I meet about it. But when it’s mine the whole scenario changes.
I find myself babbling when someone asks what the book is about. “Ah, er, the circus,” I finally stutter. I just read an excellent post on being able to talk about your book. Obviously I haven’t learned much yet. For someone as outgoing as I am, I freeze when asked about my own work. My brain forgets to engage, excited that someone has even asked about the novel, and afraid I’ll say the wrong thing. It’s similar to having a fish on the hook and you’re afraid it might get away, so you tug the line gently instead of hooking it with a sharp pull. I have probably lost many sales this way without even realizing it.
Then there’s the writing. Synopsis, description, press releases and author bio – it doesn’t end. Again, I am stumped. Where exactly am I from? That one is hard for me because I’ve traveled around so much. I included my birth city in the “from” section in a bio and in an interview it was suggested that I should update it to reflect where I currently live. But I’ve only lived here a year and only part-time! Ugh!
I look around at all the glowing bios and descriptions other authors have written and I am overwhelmed. Many hold Doctorates and degrees in writing. Since I don’t, I get the old “my stuff can’t be worth much then” feeling and I can’t get started. I feel unworthy to be called an author. But wait – why? I’ve been penning songs for as long as I can remember and have a few published. Doesn’t that count? Just because someone has more education than I doesn’t mean he/she is a better writer than I does it?
I go to a site on “How to Write A Good Synopsis” and begin. Good for me that I love research and know how to find practically anything. I can get through this, I think, as I type furiously. After a couple of days I have it tweaked and move on.
Then there are the free promotion days. I read with horror all the articles on trending and numbers. I hate numbers. I hate any kind of arithmetic (unless, of course, it involves shopping). How will I even know if my promotion is a success? And am I sure it’s the right thing to do anyway? There are several opinions on this popular way of promoting and to be honest, I’m not really sure.
Someone asked me why I didn’t take the traditional publishing route. That’s another question that stumps me every time. I always planned to finish my book, write scads of query letters and accept the rejections that came in daily, all the while hoping for a big break. When it came time to make the decision, all I wanted to do was share the book with everyone. Plus, I decided I probably didn’t want to spend the next four or five years trying to get a publishing contract when I could do it myself. So I chose the Indie route.
To sum the whole mess up, I’m an Indie Author and proud of it. I am learning as I go, and even though sometimes I feel like pulling the covers over my head to escape from the day-to-day drudgery of marketing, I am proud of what I have accomplished. I have published the book, made sales, and many new friends. My first promotion is set up for later this month. I’ll see how it goes and decide my next course of action. All the while this is going on I am working feverishly on the second installment in the INZARED series, hoping for even more sales when it’s published later in the year. Now, if I can just learn to boast about it!