Posted in Blog, Life as I know it, Writing

For indie authors’ eyes only

Hey everyone! This blog post is for other indie authors. So if you’ve come across this post because you love reading books and are looking for an author to follow, go ahead and click to one of my past blog entries, and come back for another blog entry. But this one? It won’t interest you. So thank you for visiting, and I’ll chat with you next time. 🙂

….

…..

Are they gone? Is it just us?

Okay guys, time to get authentic. This indie author thing? It’s hard. It’s crazy making hard. I mean, who here knows what they’re doing? I mean, really knows what they’re doing?

No hands?

Let’s be authentic here, okay? I’m gearing up to publish my 4th fiction novel, Come Here, Cupcake. It still has edits galore that I need to go through, and the cover hasn’t been finalized yet. It’s the first book in a series, and I haven’t even started writing the second book. My publishing date was supposed to be in the first week of August, and that has come and gone. Now I’m looking at a later date, possibly October, but maybe as late as December.

Here’s what I’m supposed to be doing in the time from now until the book publishes – MARKETING IT.

In the spirit of marketing, I abandoned my personal Instagram with my name on it. It still exists, but it seemed so cluttered with random photos that have no theme whatsoever. I then created a new Instagram page and called it Truly_Cupcake (which you can see in the right rail), since the main character in Come Here, Cupcake is named Morgan Truly. The idea was to post quotes from the book, delicious desserts, anything that would attract people who might want to read books like mine. However, if you look at the page, what do you see?

A cluttered mess with random photos.

Argh! You can’t even tell I’m an author on there! Instead, there’s a bunch of photos of my dog, the stuff I like to shove in my face, my family, and a few inspirational quotes. Stuff pertaining to my books? Just a few. Stuff that has nothing to do with writing or my books? More than 3/4 of it.

Then there’s my Author Facebook page. I’m so afraid of spamming my followers with “buy my book” posts, that I don’t even mention my books hardly at all. And the few times I DO mention my books, everyone scatters like the wind, and all I hear are crickets. This leaves me with the dilemma of WHAT to post. So I’ll go more than a week without posting anything at all.

And Twitter? Ha! I can’t even wrap my head around Twitter. I’m followed by a bunch of people who don’t pay attention to me. And I’m following a bunch of people who only know how to post “Buy My BOOK” at least a hundred times a day.

Then there’s my mailing list. Probably 2% of the people on there read what I send out. The rest just ignore it. I haven’t sent a newsletter out since January. It might be time to retire the mailing list…

Then we come to this blog. You guys, I have stuff to write. But I keep second guessing WHAT I should be writing about in this blog as an author, WHEN I should be writing about my book, and I worry about whether anyone even reads blogs anymore.

Plus there’s the time thing.

Yeah. Time. I have none of it. I work a FT job to make a living since my books do not pay the bills. Then I started a side business of editing and formatting other people’s books (which I seriously, surprisingly LOVE to do) that’s helping to fund my book costs (since, again, my books do not make any money), and I try to fit in time for my family and for exercise since I do a lot of sitting. Time for my own books? I barely have time for rest!

Thing is, I love writing. And I love creating stories for people to read. I live for this, and I’d die for this. The day my books start paying the bills and I can quit my day job is the day that I will be living my dream. There’s a definite journey to get there, too. There are things I should be doing, like getting out of my shell and putting myself out there, connecting more with people, spending money on advertising, promising changed lives in exchange for my mere words…. And I have yet to figure out exactly what those “things” are.

And then I wonder…. Is it worth it? I know, I know. I’m not fishing here. But I’m spending thousands of dollars and an inordinate amount of time to make my dream become a reality. And I know there are so many mysterious things I should be doing better than I am already doing to make this dream of mine happen faster than the crawl it’s going at now…

Anyone feeling as insane as I do?

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Author:

Author, writer, blogger. Follow me at crissilangwell.com.

4 thoughts on “For indie authors’ eyes only

  1. It’s tricky isn’t it, finding the balance between being a person and actually marketing! I try to alternate – if I can find a human way to push the book, I will, otherwise I’ll talk about my daily life. A lot of which involves writing, so in a way, still accidentally promoting!

    1. So tricky!!! I think I’ve got to work on my writer’s core muscles to figure out that balance, lol. I’ll get there. But totally just needed to vent! Thanks for commiserating with me!

  2. Oh Crissi thank you so much for writing this post. For telling it like it is, sistah. Honestly, I feel very much the same way. I see what authors do to build audiences – I watch what the really successful ones do and the thing is, building a “platform” as they call it, is really very time consuming. And we all only have a finite amount of time for this because we also have jobs and families. And the thing is, and i’m sure you can relate to this , I want to spend my precious time writing and doing what I love – not marketing. And especially what you’re saying that it’s challenging to do things that actually get people to buy. Thing is, people are bombarded by advertising, by people trying to get their attention. I have the same dilemma. I have over 1400 people on my FB page and I can write posts that get lots of “likes” and shares but not necessary clicks over to buy books at Amazon.

    Perhaps sharing posts with excerpts of the book. Enough to grab people’s interest. so they want more I have even wondered if a podcast of an except might draw people into the story. Another idea I had was making some videos – just to make a more personal connection with your audience. Not that I’ve done these things, because they take time, but I am thinking about them because they may work. Asking for sales directly dies not work. making people love you so they want more of you will work if you can figure out how to do that.

    My two cents. Let’s keep talking about this. I am feeling like you. What does one do?

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