Really this post is about writing and expectations, but I had to make good on a threat, thus the title:)
I am going to do this entire post without swearing.
So, writers…you know that place you get to after you have published your book, waited for the mass herds of millions of buyers to rush out and get it and a week later found out you’ve only had a few sales? We ALL do. This post is to remind us all why we do this in the first place. Do we write simply to sell copies? No. Chances are, if you are an author, you write because it is what you are meant to do, compelled to do and cannot help yourself.
When you sit and focus on what you are not doing right every minute of the day, does it help with your motivation? No? Then why are you sitting there focusing on your lack of sales? Get yourself motivated again. Work on your WIP. Find a promotional opportunity. Read your own book. Sometimes this can help you feel better about the situation.
Be proactive and keep moving toward whatever your next goal is. I see a lot of authors blog about their sales. Some of them are excited about just one. Others have had hundreds but are disappointed. A lot of success, in my humble (right) opinion, is your attitude and expectations. Do not convince yourself that goals and expectations are the same thing. They aren’t. A goal is something you set for yourself to achieve. An expectation you have less control over. The type of personality we have, plus the life situation we are in strongly influences the way we feel about our own success.
An author who has quit their day job and is attempting to live and support themselves plainly on writing may feel a lot more pressure than the author who is still working to earn other income. A very organised individual may feel more pressure to succeed than a less organised person.
This does not mean that you have no control.
Here are some things to keep in mind:
No one is instantly successful. Even the authors that seem to have made it big overnight had to put work into their craft. Chances are good there were many failed attempts at producing something successful before anything really took off for them.
You are in control of what you do. If things are not going the way you had hoped, there are always new avenues to be explored. Cover art changes, new marketing choices, and so forth might make the difference you were hoping to see in your sales and figures.
Positive thinking is good for you. It can’t be overrated. If you feel good about what you are doing, you might just continue doing it and make your way toward the goals you have set for yourself. Being proud of small achievements
and remembering to count them as a step in the right direction never hurts either.
Don’t let one small stumbling block make you give up. Get a bad review? Had your book turned down for inclusion in a marketing campaign or rejected by a publisher? It happens. Remember that not everything that happens is your fault. It may be that it just wasn’t the right time for it to be included. It is not the end of the world.
You will get up and write again tomorrow. This too shall pass. Do not lose sight of the forest through the trees. Enough Clichés.
Son of a