1.8.18

Publication Pitfalls #IWSG - August 2018

Hi, gang! Thanks for all the visits last month. I had lots of fun during my first time as IWSG co-host. For any of you who've thought about volunteering to co-host but haven't done it yet, I highly recommend it. The time commitment's not bad and it's a perfect opportunity to reach further into blogland and meet more IWSGers while learning from their experiences.

The August optional question is:
What pitfalls would you warn other writers to avoid on their publication journey?

So many pitfalls...but I'll zero in on one bit of advice: don't obsess too much over one book. Whether you're seeking publication or the book is in the midst of the publication process or has just been released, don't let that one story consume your world - because that will drive you crazy and it's unproductive. 

While you're in the waiting stages - waiting to hear back from agents/publishers, waiting for notes from your editor, waiting for the next sales promotion to kick in - be working on the next project. For me, it's proven to be the best way to relax and remind myself that my entire life doesn't hinge on the fate of one book. 

I obsessed way too much over my first book. It's true authors have to put tons of time and energy into writing, marketing, etc., but I was like a squirrel chasing every possible avenue for book promotion, which left me with zero time or focus for writing my next book. The very best marketing you can do for existing books is to write the next book, and I wasn't doing that. 

If you feel like you're banging your head against a wall trying to get one project published, maybe take a break from the head banging and write something else. That something else might be the project that gets you where you want to go.   




This post is part of the monthly blog hop/therapy session known as Insecure Writer's Support Group, founded by the one and clonely Alex J. Cavanaugh. Click below to join the group!

15 comments:

Julie Flanders said...

Great advice and the squirrel comparison is so appropriate for how I was too. Glad you had fun co-hosting!

Jennifer Lane said...

Ha ha, sounds like we're both annoyed by the waiting game in publishing. I agree with your advice, which is easier to follow after publishing multiple books!

L. Diane Wolfe said...

That's good advice. One book often isn't enough anyway. It takes multiple books to start making a dent.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

I always enjoy co-hosting IWSG! It's busy but it's fun. :)

Neurotic Workaholic said...

This is really good advice. I read a personal essay once by a Pushcart Prize winner who confessed that he'd spent years toiling away on a novel that kept getting rejected, while refusing to work on other stories because he was so focused on that one. It was only after he took a step back and started working on new stories that he was able to look at the novel with a fresh perspective and see what worked and what didn't.

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

That's good advice. I did that for a while when I first started. Joining a writers group taught me to move on.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Smart advice. I dove into my next book just weeks after the release of the first one.

Nick Wilford said...

It's so important to keep writing. That's the way to build a career - which is about more than one book!

Kathy Karch said...

"The very best marketing you can do for existing books is to write the next book..." That's the line that struck me the most in your post. Great advice. We must keep looking forward, keep writing the the next thing. We must not linger. Thanks for the post, and happy writing to you. :)

dolorah said...

There's always another story idea clambering to be written. I like your advice Nicki :)

E. A. Fournier said...

Perfect advice. My second book is about to be released in November and I keep obsessing about the editing and formatting, the ads and blog tours, and on and on. It's robbing from me the energy to continue work on my languishing next book. Thanks for timely advice.

Juneta Key said...

I will definitely keep that in mind when I finally release my first book. Great post.

Feather Stone said...

Yes, Nicki, you've given the best advice. Write the next book. Working on that now but starting with a summary this time. It might shorten the writing phase from nearly eternity to just a couple of years, LOL. Nice to chat with you again.

Melissa said...

Finding a balance is important. So is knowing when to put a project on a back burner and move on to something else. Great post.

Crystal Collier said...

LOL. That's epic advice, but who doesn't obsess over their first book too much? I mean, doesn't that go with the territory?