Thursday, February 19, 2009

Thursday 13 - Things I've learned about being an author

You may or may not know, this blog is the home of my new novel, The List (buy it on Amazon!).

I've learned a lot about being a self-published author, and here's a list of 13 things I've learned!

1. "Self-published" still has a stigma. It's like wearing a big red letter. But things seem to be getting a little bit better that way.
2. If you don't toot your own horn, few others will toot it for you.
3. You have to ask for what you want. If you ask, sometimes you will receive.
4. Social media is a mixed bag. You can let yourself get sucked into doing nothing else, but if you use it wisely, it's just another way to get the word out.
5. Marketing your book is almost a full-time job.
6. Correction, it IS a full-time job.
7. I'm a marketer by trade, and it's a lot easier, from a comfort standpoint, to market someone else rather than to market yourself.
8. When you market yourself, you had better have a thick skin, because everyone's a critic.
9. However, there are a few kind souls out there that are always willing to help. They're like writing angels.
10. For some reason, getting people to write reviews, even if they really like your book, is like pulling teeth.
11. Remember that old saying, "you have to spend money to make money?" Well, sadly, it's true.
12. Because of all these things, you really have to believe in what you're selling. I really believe in my book, in my story, and in my storytelling. So I have faith that eventually, I'll at least break even. :)
13. Though, you should always listen to advice. It's like those American Idol singers that are really horrible but think their great. Get advice outside of your family and friends. If you get constructive criticism, take heed.

Home of the new Thursday 13


  1. Carmen,
    I think Eragon was a self published book and so was The Shack and both authors sold tons of copies, but maybe not right away. Anyway, I wish you success.

  2. I wish you a ton of sales. It can be a full time job, if you let it. Finding the elusive balance is the key. Best of luck to you. Happy T13!

  3. Painters need canvases and writers need books. Canvases are a lot easier to get and to show. Do you have a review we could read?

  4. I need to check my blog list, I know that I've added your book to it but it isn't showing up for some reason, perhaps it's full.

  5. all these things are why I don't sell my photos.

  6. The same is true even for blogging. I practically have to beg my friends and family to come have a look at my blog... you would think I was asking them to eat liver or something. So I have stopped promoting my blog to them.

  7. Pretty much everything you said in your list holds true to any book, whether it starts off as self-published or not.

    As an editor for a self-publishing company, (yes, boys and girls, some companies have real editors and everything!) I can say with all honesty that I've read and worked on some truly excellent books.

    As an author of over a dozen published books, it's been my experience that unless you're a "big cheese," you have to do all your own marketing, promo etc. So self-publishing isn't really that much different in that regard.

    Good luck!!

    Sephera Giron

  8. I think self publishing will always have a bit of stigma because there is not filter to keep people who should know better but don't from doing it. It's a question of quality control, and the people who pay for it are those who self publish who are actually very good.

  9. I agree,we do the best we can with what we have to work with. Best of luck to you.

  10. ((hug)) I'm glad you are hanging in there with all of this. It's a lot

  11. Self published ain't bad at all! You can handle it for sure. Best of luck!
    Thanks for visiting my TT.

  12. Interesting list. Good luck with your self-publishing.


Have you bought your copy of "The List" yet? Will you buy one if I beg? Pleeeeeeeze?