This journey of being an author, a self-published but willing to pitch my book to an agent or larger publisher authorhood, has been filled with so many lessons and now it’s time for me to drop a few nuggets. So if you haven’t subscribe yet, you definitely should!
Today’s Authorprenuership lesson comes from the five year in review lens; in other words this if for my 0-3 year experience range indie author. It’s so easy to keep pushing the same book over and over again but guess what’s the biggest obstacle for a self-pub author: growing our audience.
Water Your Audience and They Shall Grow
Yep, not selling the book–as long as it has a good storyline–isn’t the biggest issue. Not getting it out to your audiences is definitely easier now since we have retailers like Amazon, Bookbaby, iBooks and others who can get us in a reader’s queue. Plus if you have a social media following (big or small), you can bet that 1 out of 30 followers will buy your book.
But what happens when your audience slows to grow, and even though I know this is a completely abnormal situation, but what if you can’t travel to events or there are no events going on for you to hustle your book at? How can you possibly grow your audience?
Enter lesson 201. What I’ve learned since I first published my book in 2015, is that if you keep pushing the same book and your audience doesn’t grow, your following will plateau and interest will dim. But before the light completely goes out, you can do one thing that will make the sunshine bright once more–write mo!
Mo Books, Mo Books, Mo!
I just released my fourth book, which is the second release this year, and I immediately saw my readership grow. Even though my following didn’t drastically change, it did increase and so new readers took a chance on me because my old readers were excited to share my new books with their audience.
Of course there are other factors that play a part; make sure you have reviews for your current book(s), stay active with you audience, write or do anything that pertains to your writing career whether it’s blogging, vlogging or joining TikTok. But keeping things completely transparent, I knew this step was essential years ago, like literally the third year that I pushed the same two books.
What kept me from dropping more books faster? Answer: Excuses. “I don’t have enough time to write,” or “it needs to be perfect” were my favorite excuses but the latter was the greatest one of all.
Trust in the process and instead of looking for perfection, write toward passion. Write a story that makes you feel something and trust that even though a comma is out of place or maybe the a sentence is a run on that the editor will catch it.
Write and then release and then do it again.
I’m thankful that I can now open a bookstore online with Square and have several options for readers. I’ll share how that goes too because I’m testing it to see if managing my own store is worth the work or if I should just stick with the mass-producing book retailers.