10 Things I Wish I Knew About Being an Author I Didn’t Know Before
By: Samantha Warren
1. No one does it right the first time. Not even Stephen King. The first draft is always crap, and that’s okay. That’s why they invented editing.
2. It doesn’t get easier. As much as I would love to say it gets easier the more you know, the opposite is actually true. The more I learn, the harder it gets. But it’s also more rewarding because you know that you’re putting out the best possible book you can.
3. What worked for the last book may not work for this book. The publishing industry is changing so fast that marketing is a huge challenge. What may have made your last book a big hit won’t necessarily reap the same rewards for the newest book. You have to stay on top of your game, which leads us to…
4. Stay in the know. You have to stay on top of all the changes going on in the publishing world and social media. If you don’t, you’ll fall behind the curve and be left in the dust.
5. Self-publishing is not the devil. Like most people, I used to look down on self-publishing. But it’s really quite awesome. Any mistakes you make are your own, and you can fix them quickly.
6. Yes, you need an editor. I thought I was a good editor, and I am, but when you created the book, you need an extra set of eyes (or two, or three) to help you out. I had an editor once tell me that she cringed every time she heard someone say they liked the control self-publishing gave them because it meant they would be less open to her suggestions. While I don’t think that’s necessarily true, it could be for a lot of people. When an editor gives you a suggestion, take it to heart. Really look at what they’re saying, then decide if it’s right for your book or not. Don’t just write them off because you think you know better.
7. Even bad reviews are good. Bad reviews hurt, and they never stop hurting. When someone says your book sucks and they couldn’t finish it, or puts it in their “OMG make it stop” shelf on Goodreads, you’ll want to cry. But if the reviewer has done their job and actually given reasons for why they didn’t like the book, that review can be very helpful. It will allow you to improve in your next book and continue to grow. Also remember that you can’t please everyone. Not everyone will love your book. Some will hate it. And that’s just the way it goes.
8. You need a professional cover. Unless you have a degree in graphic design, it’s best to hire someone else to do your covers. Sure, you may be able to make a decent enough cover, but a well made cover makes a huge difference. And don’t use 3D models. They look cheesy.
9. Writing is an art; publishing is a business. It’s very hard to separate the writer mind from the publisher mind, but it must be done. Even traditionally published authors have to do a bit of marketing and business work. You have to be able to put your love of your book aside and treat it like a product in some ways. It’s your baby, but your baby is in a very big pageant and you need to realize that once the book is written, you become the coach, not the parent.
10. Just write. It’s so easy to get caught up in the marketing and social media jazz that comes along with publishing, but don’t forget the most important part: the writing. You should be spending more time on writing than promoting.
Genre – Paranormal Romance
Rating – PG