It has been a very long year for me. I spent a year of my writing time to market the first novel as most novice authors might do. We really want to see it sell and put everything else on the back burner. Turns out to be a really bad choice. What would have happened if the novel boomed? What else did I have to offer? Nothing, nothing at all.
Time flew by without me noticing. My several attempts to setup a book signing (not one of the bad marketing elements) gained few sales; got enough to buy gas for the ride home. I spent endless hours building webpages to showcase my new novel, ran giveaways for publicity, and drown my Facebook friends with my bottomless posts about this great new read they should all pick up. After one full year of promoting, I had the title of the second book written down – on scratch paper. Talk about progress towards my second book! I should have been editing it by now instead of just figuring out the title.
Here’s a little side note before I go on, what is written above is all true and should leave a sour twang in a reader’s mouth to think selling a novel is more important than the work itself. That’s not so. I felt it was important for those reading my post today to gain one bit of insight I lacked. “Don’t stop writing. No matter how dear to you your first manuscript is; the important thing to keep in mind is offering something else after that book starts flying off the shelves.” I am not dissuaded from my poor marketing skills to try again, but I have also learned to leave these kinds of matters in knowledgeable hands when I can afford it. Money trees don’t grow well in sandy soil and I seem to live in a desert.
The real goal of an author comes from and old saying, “They like me. They really, really like me.” It is the craving to have your ego stroked, petted, and praised for doing such a good job. We, as writers, always seek out vindication for what we do. On the flip-side, bad reviews could kill the initial inspiration driving that newly born writer. He/She might have a great storytelling voice, but just needs a mentor to guide them. Bad reviews are wonderful. These reviews tell a writer where something went wrong and allows them to fix it in the next novel. Positive criticism (even in its lowest form of sounding down right mean) can improve writing skills. I have listened to those worldly critics and done just that with the sequel to Temperature: Dead and Rising.
With all this said, I sit and wait for the current publisher to to finish the formatting and release my second novel, Temperature: Bitter Cold, into the wild. I will keep you apprised of thing until then through my fan page or website.