Thursday, January 17, 2008

The Writing Life

Just let me write.

That's the cry of most writers I know: Just let me write.

I don't want to worry about marketing. I don't want to worry about publicity. I don't want to worry about all that other stuff.

There was a time when writers wrote and publishers did everything else to sell what writers wrote.

No longer.

I'm sorry I missed that phase of writing world. Or maybe it's a case of the grass is always greener ... maybe there were inherent problems with the way that system worked. It doesn't really matter because I'm a writer in this day and age. I must deal with what's expected of a writer here and now.

Which means I have to help market my book.

Confession: My journalism degree required not one class in marketing. The only things I've ever sold were McDonald's hamburgers and teen clothing. And I spent most of my check buying cute tops and pants for myself.

But now I have a book. And I want people to know about my book. I want people to read Baby Changes Everything because I think it has some good information in it. Great stories. Encouragement for late-in-life moms.

Yes, my publisher helps sell my book. Yes, I have a publicist who booked me on some radio stations--and I even landed a tv interview.

But there is no rest for the weary writer. You write a book--and you take a deep breath and help market that book! You blog and you speak and you hand out free copies occasionally. You ask other writers what they are doing. If you're like me, you feel like you're never doing enough.
And then, you go to bed, get up and try again the next day.

And for some insane reason ... you find yourself thinking about writing another book.

I am, after all, a writer.

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Tiffany Stuart said...

The phrase about you never doing enough stuck out to me. I struggle with the same thing. I am constantly thinking, How come others can write faster, work out numerous projects, rewrite the topic and spin it out to new markets, and I can't?

I think those people either have a better ability to focus, market, or something.

I work at my own pace. Slow and slower.

Why isn't that good enough?

Maybe I'm striving again.

Breathe, Beth. You are doing the work of marketing. Your way.

One day at a time.

Scoti Springfield Domeij said...
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Scoti Springfield Domeij said...
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Scoti Springfield Domeij said...

In the good old days when publishers did all the marketing, I was the Editor and Production Coordinator for Harvest House Publishers. The most common author complaint was: "You aren't marketing my book."

If they didn't see their book in every bookstore, they called and asked, "Why?" Buyers order the books that interest their customers.

If authors want to market their books, get to know the managers of local bookstores. One author took the initiative to contact every bookstore in her state! When she published a new book, she sent them all a postcard and followed up with a phone call. Her publisher loved her!

Authors can also buy media lists and book themselves onto talk shows across the nation.

Vicki said...

You are so right!

I've not completed a book length project as yet, still I empathize with the process and the marketing headaches since I know so many other writers who struggle to get their work out there. It's a whole new animal nowadays - this marketing thing. I don't want to worry about it either.

I do think networking is very valuable in that it's helping me gain knowledge about the process, from start to finish, and beyond (that marketing, oy!):-)

Will pray for you in this process. God bless you. Keep doing what you're doing.


jen said...

Wow. This was a real eye opener. Thanks for the post, and for all the comments, too.