I can be difficult when starting any new project or career. I have been writing for my entire life but it has only been the last couple of years that I have put any serious thought and effort into becoming an author. As I began finishing the first draft I was convinced that all I had to do was complete it and send it off.
There was sure to be someone the would snatch it up and help me polish it making it ready for publishing. Of course an agent was going to be ready and waiting to present my story to every publisher they knew. I was so ready to start the being a published author and doing promotional work to make myself a success.
A few months after I sent out an array of query letters along with sample pages and chapters I started getting responses. Each and every one was a thank you and polite rejection. I was devastated. I had been so sure that this story inside me was going to be one that reached out and tugged the heart strings of thousand of readers. It was going to be the first of many books that would adorn the shelves with my name in the author spot.
I tried for over a year to find an agent but never landed one. I looked into self publishing but after careful consideration decided it was not for me. I instead went for a compromise, Indie Publishing. I developed an author page as well as my currently updating Rescue Me page. I joined Twitter and have been learning the ropes of the world in the digital age.
There are many lessons I learned going through the development and editing processes that I will take forward. I am also learned that the online community while very strong is not the only place to promote and in cases like genres outside of fantasy and sci-fi may not be the best base. I am putting my marketing skills to the test and constantly looking for ways to reach out to new audiences.
I noticed however that I would be torn between being one track minded on the promotion of my published book, leaving all other projects to linger or I would be so split working on everything else that came to mind that I would ignore my promotion duties altogether. I have now created a system in which I focus on my marketing for an hour a day 4 days per week and the dedicate one day solely to promotion. The other days I spend mapping out upcoming projects on two of the days and writing / editing the two most current WIP.
I am preparing to launch a series that may very well make me a household name eventually as well as using what recognition I have to raise money for a few causes close to my heart. I will always try to bite off more than I can chew but I will never regret that choice.
One of my favorite quotes has taught me that if you shoot for the moon and miss you still land among the stars. I am looking forward while remembering what I have learned in the past and knowing that even if the first twenty books don't make the best seller list I can still keep trying. I will make it to the moon and stars someday.