Well, it's Friday. Thank Cthulhu. Had a quietish night last night,
slept more solidly than lately. Some odd dreams about work (not anxiety,
just was at work), and about sword fighting. I blame the later on reading
a list of jokes about the SCA (You might be in the SCA if...). Though
I was definitely out of period...unless ancient Egyptian/Mesopotamian sickle
swords are allowed now.
Got up, got moving. Packed up stuff for tonight's moviefest and came to work. Did all the pending requests and abuse tickets, save one that's probably a week's worth of delisting foo. Fun fun fun. Making a shopping list for stuff we need, things we're either out of, or that we only have because me and Boss #1 bought our own. I don't mind loaning out my usb to serial, but really the company needs a couple of their own. Need to talk to boss #1, see if he's got anything for the list.
Hoping today goes smoothly, and I feel well enough to go to the 'Cruise Ship Disaster' flick fest tonight with the Ufies. I've got 'Titanic 2', 'Deep Rising' and 'Lost Voyage', and I know Amythest is bringing 'Ghost Ship' and 'Poseidon'. So we have a plethera of choices. Then there's the weekend, which is still pretty vague. Really, it kind of boils down to how many tentacles I have, by when, and how I'm physically feeling. This cough is the devil.
Not much else of note right now. Had a mysterious credit card charge, that turned out to be a Cthulhu collection I preordered a while back. Yay new book on Tuesday. I wasn't too worried, I assumed either a preorder or I'd bought a book in my sleep. Still reading the same Curran novel. It's good, other than one character I want to see die horribly. Luckily, since it's Tim Curran...he will. As an author he gives good fanservice. *grin* That's all I've got right now, I'll ramble more later/tomorrow. Ciao, and watch out for haunted cruise ships.
Obstacle #5 – You, the Author
This might sound harsh, but all the other obstacles we talked about really stem from one source—the author. Here’s what a lot of authors miss:
Self-publishing does not mean that you can, must, or should do it all yourself.
I think that’s what trips us up. You may be passionate about doing things your way, sticking it to the “gatekeepers,” or just sharing your story with the world. But don’t lose sight of the fact that publishers do not do everything themselves, either. They use editors. They use cover artists. They use book designers. They use marketers. They use people who are trained in these skills, and like it or not, your book is competing with those books for readers’ money and attention.
Yes, it’s possible to do all those things yourself, and do them all well. Maybe you can. But don’t expect to. Don’t assume you can. Instead, assume you have to educate yourself. You have to learn how to do these things, all of these things, well. And you have to accept that sometimes your best effort will not be enough, and you’re going to need help.
Let’s face it, as writers, we all have to have a touch of ego. We want to tell our stories. We want others to listen. We admit, by the mere fact of writing, that we believe we have something to say. But that ego can be our downfall. It tells us we can make a good book cover—or one that’s “good enough”–with no training or experience at all. It tells us that our writing is pretty darn good without any expensive and time-consuming editing. It tells us that if only we shout and shout and shout about our book enough, make our work “discoverable” enough, people will listen and feel compelled to read it, because it’s just that good.
That ego lies. Don’t trust it. View everything it says with suspicion. Assume you can’t do all those things yourself, and educate yourself if you’re determined to try. There’s a much better chance then that I’ll buy your book, and not put it down after the first five pages. And that other readers will follow suit.
The best news in all of this is that it’s not too late. Even if you’ve made one or more of these blunders, thrown these obstacles up in front of your potential readers, you can fix it. You can upload a new cover for an ebook. You can rewrite and change your blurb. You can upload an edited version of your story. You can start promoting more (or less!) or more effectively. You can decide to educate yourself or get help in the areas where your skills are lacking. If you’re in this for the long game, it’s never too late to improve.
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