Okay, if you hate whining or pity parties....you might want to stop reading.
Maybe it's the change in seasons...fun and sun summer to short days, cold nights autumn, or could be all the news I hear about other authors making it to #1 with a first book or a previously published book (not that I'm not happy for them, this is a tough business), but I'm starting to feel as if, maybe this whole writing thing isn't in my cards.
I completed my first book ten years ago, after spending five years studying and learning everything I could find on how to write and sell a novel. It took eight years to get that baby published, although I had published a novella three years before. When I got that call I thought....this is it. I'm going to be famous (in a Nora Roberts kinda way)....believe me I'm not the only author to think that...delusional as it is. I didn't get too discouraged when it didn't happen, I figured, it's a short story, not many people will buy it but maybe I'll get enough of a fan base to want more work. Then, in 2011, I sold my novel, Forget Me Not. Since I'd barely made enough money to put gas in my car with the novella, I wasn't expecting much from the new book, so I was very pleasantly surprised by my first royalty check. I figured, hey, people actually want to read my work. So I got to work cleaning up book three so I could get it published while I was also completing book four and beginning book five. In 2012 I published Dark Obsession with a new electronic publisher who had a major publisher backing them. Then I really thought....okay....I should start making enough to pay off my credit card and put gas in my car. Needless to say, after being on sale for 16 months, that didn't happen...in fact I never surpassed double digits with any of my royalties. Is the publisher to blame? Partly. Am I to blame? Partly. Are my readers to blame? Definitely! Hah, just kidding.
On the advice of another author who is raking in the dough self-publishing, I self-published my fourth book House of Cards. And while reviews are amazing and it even WON best book in the mainstream suspense category with RomCom, sales haven been....horrible, for lack of a better word.
The thing is, I feel like I've done everything I can to get my name and books into the hands of readers. I've lowered the price, I've given them away, I've bought ads, I'm on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads and several other social sites....I've done everything short of begging (okay, maybe some begging)...and still, readers don't even know I exist. It's very disheartening (to me and my muse and makes me feel like a child again) and I have to wonder, is it worth it? Am I deluding myself thinking my books are worth reading? That I can even write another book? I mean, surely readers aren't being too subjective when they put books like 50 Shades of Grey or Dinosaur Erotica at the top of the charts....should I just start writing that kind of crap? Tell me. What do I need to do to get my work in front of readers? Or....do my books really suck and people are just being nice?
Well....this blog didn't make me feel any better.