Saturday, September 17, 2011

Going H.A.M (Hard As a Mother F...)

This summer was rough for many independent authors.  and ebook sales were down for most of us. And since I no longer publish physical books these basically are my only two sales outlets, it made for a depressing summer.

I started to doubt myself as a writer. I really thought about giving up. The going was getting tough and I saw no light at the end of the tunnel. I thought my first book would be a million seller. Then I felt the next one would. Then I prayed that the third one would just sell twenty thousand copies.

Even though I'm doing fairly well for an independent, I'm not selling as much as I would like. I was comparing my work to the best selling books of others. But looking at the top ten list doesn't tell the whole story.

Take Dan Brown's book the Da Vinci Code. It has sold over 80 million copies. But the author's first three books sold less than 10,000. Since my first three books have sold over ten thousand copies I'm not in bad company.
There's a saying by President Calvin Coolidge: Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan 'Press On' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.

That means we should keep trying. The Dan Brown example shows us how big publishing companies do it too. They'll put out a few books by an author. Then when they think he has a large enough fan base, they push his next book hard. i don't know if this is the best way, but it is one of the easiest for self published author's. Your books can be your best advertising. You just have to make sure they're good.

I've seen a couple of self published books that are garbage. This is usually because the author just up and decided to be a writer without ever getting an honest appraisal of his writing. Or the author is not a good story teller but thinks because he reads a lot and has big vocabulary he can entertain people. We have to always keep it up front. If we can't entertain people with our writing it's not going to sell.

That means our persistence should be two fold. One keep writing. Two learn how to write stuff that SELLS. Because in the long run, if your writing don't make no dollars, it don't make no cents.

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