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Posts Tagged ‘book stores’

Hey! Are you there? I know I haven’t posted for a while and thank you for not unfollowing my blog because of it.

Life happened.

On May 25th, I had surgery. The weeks leading up to it were full of taking care of things I wouldn’t be able to for a while afterward. Then, it was about recovery. Happy to say things are going really well! Still have a weight limit for lifting, and haven’t been cleared to start coffee again, but I can work with those.

In the weeks leading up to surgery, I had ideas for ‘Guarding Amber’ (the follow up to ‘Guarding Charon’). I just didn’t have the focus I needed. My mind went to a million little things that I’d not done for months (years?) that demanded my attention at last. Even if it only took 5 minutes or less to do. I was organizing our cd cabinet. Preparing the house for the oldest to come home for the summer from college. Heck, I even went out and edged/trimmed our yard.

This weekend, I came to the realization that everything was going to be fine. I’m healing well, not had any big issues, and that’s when it all clicked. I was finally ready to put the surgery, etc, in the past and move forward with life again.

Writing’s not something you can simply do, put aside, and get rich off of. It takes a lot of time to write a story, even more to get it edited and in shape for your publisher. Add to that the hours needed every single week to promote your books and it’s easy to see why a lot of people give up after just one book. Because you’re putting in the work with almost zero monetary payback for up to a decade.

But, if you DO put in the time and the work, then you might actually get that brass ring.

Speaking of brass rings….I grabbed one! I’m going to be doing a book signing at the Federal Way, WA Barnes & Noble on June 25th! If you live nearby, come by and say hello!

Internationally renowned

BB

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Yes, I know it’s Friday. Hush. I got spoiled, so I’m passing it on. LOL.

Every author has, at one point, had the same daydream. The one where you’re doing a signing at a major bookstore. There you sit, at a small table, looking sharp and having a line of people chatting with you. Some have waited hours to meet you, out in the cold.

It’s a myth. It’s not going to happen for several years, possibly decades. Don’t ever kid yourself that it’s going to happen two weeks after you release your first book if you don’t already have a few important things.

1. Name recognition: are you a celebrity? Does your photo grace the cover of a tabloid? Are you a candidate for political office? Did you just win an Oscar, Emmy, or Grammy? Get out of prison after serving time for a crime you didn’t commit? Escape from a life of captivity? Is your book the basis for a major motion picture? Do you already have an established reader base of several thousand loyal fans who buy your book three seconds after it becomes available?

2. Connections: do you know the manager at the store? Are you with an agent? Did you hire a publicist? Is your publishing house really big and have a dedicated marketing department?

First time authors, new authors, people whose books are still being found by readers are NOT going to get that signing event. Why? Because bookstores want to host authors who are going to bring in customers. Ones that will browse, and buy, while they wait for you. The ones who will spend $100 between coffee and books so they have something to read or sip while they listen to you/wait their turn.

They want authors who will bring in readers. Period.

It’s not that they don’t encourage new authors. Heck, we’re the backbone of their business. Without new authors and new stories, there wouldn’t be new bookstores, just used ones. But, at the end of the day, they want to make money. And they’re not going to do that by hosting an author no one’s heard about.

Don’t think of it as a lost dream. See it as a goal. One that you’re going to have to work towards, spend hours cultivating a readership who will start laying the groundwork FOR you. Because they’re going to go into a store and ask about your titles. They’re going to create a buzz, get managers to start noticing they’re getting multiple requests for a single title/author.

It takes time. Perseverance. It will not happen two weeks, two months, possibly even two years after your first title released.

So stop acting like it will and do the work instead of expecting it to be handed to you. Because you haven’t earned that line yet.

BB

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