Wednesday, January 7, 2015

A 2012 Author Cry for Help #IWSG



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*I didn't know we were supposed to share a bit of ourselves! I am a stay-at-home mom of 5; ages ranging from 18 to 2! I love every one of my children and find my teenagers just as adorable as my toddler. I'm weird that way! I started writing since 9 and have written over 10 books, but only 1 is published! :P

Yesterday, I happened across this email to a good friend, and was flabbergasted about how stressed I was 3 years ago over my first book's release. I had forgotten so much!  I thought I'd share it because I know I am not the only one who's gone through this. 

Happy IWSG day! 


I don't know how to begin to share with you what I've been battling. I feel that you're one of the best people I can confide in and you'll see why in a second.

I'm grateful that the Lord has led me to my little publisher, it has taught me a lot about what being a writer is once published. My spirituality has been strong. I always put the Lord first, then my family, then myself. Always. There's never been a question on what should come first.

Since my book was accepted by this little publisher, my priorities have tremendously shifted! I've been working overtime to promote my book as much as I can so much to the point that it's mentally drained me. I find it overbearing to take in more than that--a simple thing such as visiting teaching seems to tip my entire balance to a screaming level of no-can-dos because of how mentally exhausted I am from working hard for my book.

You can imagine how this has upset my family balance as well as my spirituality. I've been making eternal choices that would've appalled myself a year back because my head isn't in the right place right now and I find it terrifying now!

I find it stressful to know that my book isn't where books are sold everywhere and wish it was, having to scurry about to see if other libraries or small bookstores--even a distributor--would carry my book. My current book has some grammar mistakes, which I know wouldn't be there if my publisher had done a better job at editing.

I'm losing myself in here! I wonder if it's because I'm resisting my 'fate' as an author to a small publisher, or if it's my spirit calling out for help, that this isn't for me anymore.

I'm bringing this to you to see how being a published author is like for a big publisher. Do you find yourself constantly worrying about promoting your book on an hourly basis? What's the most thing you have to worry about as an author--outside life excluded?

I wonder if I'm being foolish for thinking about withdrawing from my small publisher and plunging into the query world again for my current book. My spirituality is suffering because I'm spreading myself out way too thin. Oh, how I admire self-published authors because they have the guts to take on the entire war all by themselves. I'm finding out very fast that I'm not that kind of person, it isn't me--being in a small indie publishing company as I am in now.

I'd love to hear your thoughts, what you might recommend for me and how to go about doing what you feel I should do--I really need some insight. I've been praying and asking my husband for blessings over my circumstances. Or am I just being ungrateful?

*updated

22 comments:

  1. I am also a 2012 Author. I wrote and published Catch a Falling Star and got it published by paying for good editing and printing services from I-Universe. I will never do that again! It allowed me to experience a real publisher (they are a subsidiary to Penguin Books). I achieved some success with the product, but I was hung out to dry on marketing and promotion. The major publishing houses are increasingly investing less in their books and expecting more self-sacrifice from the author. I ended up paying for the privilege of working hard for them and only they make any money on the deal. Nuts to that! I found an Indie Publisher, PDMI Publishing, who will do the same thing for me without charging me money for my creation. They will also help with promotion, since that is how they will make their money. I now have to put up with editors that know less about editing than I do (I am a former high school English teacher) and production schedules that have me still waiting a year later for work to proceed on my next two books, but I finally have some control over my destiny as a writer. You probably know this already, but I believe publishing has become a game for the independents and the big publishing houses are doomed. Hopefully I have enough talent to compete, but being an author has become a struggle to keep people and publishers from taking advantage of me. I hope your learning curve has been less of a roller-coaster ride than mine, but I wish you all the success you can handle.

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    1. Michael, my learning curve has been super steep! One thing I do enjoy about marketing is engaging with my fans. I love book signing and holding presentations! Since advertising our books on social media has become a huge frown, where do indi authors really go to sell? It's a challenge, isn't it?

      The big houses are actually looking into extending their services to indies for a fee--I believe they want a piece of the indie pie!

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  2. Thanks for sharing. Yeah, I still have these insecurities. I don't think they ever go away. We just have to find strength from them...I guess. =)

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    1. That's true, our trials should make us better people!

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  3. You were about at the end of your rope, weren't you? It's easy to get caught up in the process and lose ourselves. And what really matters.

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    1. I don't know how authors do it. Maybe I was obsessing and just fell off the deep end. I haven't had any books release since then and I'm not sure how I will do it, but I need to find something that is comfortable and doesn't kill me!

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  4. We work so hard to get something, and then it doesn't turn out AT ALL as expected. That is so LIFE. This is an excellent reminder that "being published" may or may not be what you thought. However, it's up to you (us) to keep your (our) priorities in line.

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    1. So true! Muggles don't realize just how crazy it gets for us, hu? xD

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  5. Yep. I'll bet everyone has gone through that. We have such insecurities and being alone doesn't help. My Hubs is pretty understanding and patience but he really doesn't "get" it. This group is terrific in bolstering us. Best wishes for 2015.

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    1. I love our group!!! Thank you, Diane, best 2015 to you too!

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  6. Wow, Elizabeth! What a powerful letter! I know through what my published sister has gone through that either approach to publishing is a tough road. You have to promote, promote, promote - put yourself out there over an over. Congratulations to you for sticking with it. It sounds like you have found better balance three years later. Good luck with your newest book!

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    1. Thank you! I was pretty astounded when i came across this, I had forgotten a lot of what I went through! ;)

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  7. I can imagine that it would be stressful. I mean, we're writers. Most of us aren't trained marketers. I hope you're in a better place now.

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    1. That's right! I've worked in retail and have had my own business, it's the online marketing that is fairly new to me and it's evolving to where advertising is severely frowned down upon! What to do, what to do...

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  8. I spent the last two years stressing exactly like that. Everything built up to the point where I was longing for 2014 to end so that I could have a fresh, clean start and get my career back on track.

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    1. I'm sorry to hear that. It's a terrible thing to endure, isn't it? I haven't had another book out yet and I haven't exactly tried to push my first one. Since the web has evolved to where authors are told no more hawking, what do we do now? Hmmm

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  9. I have to agree -- that first book release brings stress with a capital "S." I'm at that point right now, trying to get ready to launch my first book in early February. It's in my head so much that I sometimes dream about all I still have to do. I hope you are now in a better place, having gone through all that. Best of luck with everything in 2015!

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    1. Thank you!! Congrats on your book baby! I honestly hope your experience is a whole lot better than mine! Best wishes for 2015!

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  10. I'm about to finally have my first book (a novella, actually) published in May. I have no idea what to expect, but I'm sure it will be very stressful. How did you find your way through it?

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    1. Congratulations on your book baby! So very exciting! I eventually cut back on promoting online and gave up on trying to get my book into every library or bookstore. I gave a way TONS of free books to get this done. I turned to joining writer conferences and participated in presenting as well as book signings.

      I forged many connections with writers as well as some book store managers and had many opportunities for book signing. I found that those are most enjoyable compared to online circussing! ;)

      My book eventually became "old". Have you been told that the best way to get your fist book successful is to write another and get that one published? Well, I have yet to get any others published (though I've NEVER stopped writing). I have at least 9 books right now waiting to be released and I'm dreading the marketing on those in hopes that I don't repeat history!

      While I still LOVE to connect with wonderful bloggers and others, I hope I can handle it better when they release!

      I hope this helped... :)

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  11. Memories... like the corners of my mind.... ha ha. They can be awful sometimes, can't they? But hey, look at you now! Thanks for sharing this with us because I think we have all hit this "rock bottom" of pain. Thank you for saying you admire Indy-published authors for taking on the whole show. I hadn't thought of it like that and it is true. I just wish some did it better so we would all benefit from that hard work. Happy New Year!

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    1. I've come away with lots of knowledge, but still feel like the padawan I am! I know I have lots to learn still, and I worry how it will be when my other books release!

      I do wish that every indy author took pride in their work as well so that as readers we wouldn't stumble!

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