Wednesday, 7 December 2011

The ups and downs of an indie author...

I'm in a bit of a funny mood this week, and I'm not happy about it, because when I'm in one of these moods I tend to waste time dwelling on things therefore getting absolutely nothing constructive done in the process.  It's actually quite exhausting, to tell the truth.

So, why am I in a funny mood?  Because my sales for December (so far) have been crap!  Sorry to be blunt, but they are.  They're rubbish!  I tell you, it's a good job I'm not relying on my books to earn a living because I'd be pretty much done for if that was the case!

These pretty dire sales figures are twice as depressing for me because, for the past two months, I've had some of the strongest sales figures ever, oh, I'm not talking a threat to Jackie Collins or anything like that, I just mean that, as far as sales of my books go October and November were really good.  So, I actually thought things might be starting to take off.  I thought things might be looking up.  And then we get to December, those fantastic sales figures disappear and we're left with those horribly depressing orange bars!  And I've now come right back down to earth with a huge bump!

I guess only now have I realised the immense amount of emotions you experience as an independent author.  Oh, I know I've only been doing this for 6 months so my books haven't exactly been out in the big wide world for that long a time, but I know of authors who published around the same time as me and their sales are incredible!  So, I need to know what their secret is because, right now, I'm experiencing more ups and downs than an out-of-control pogo stick!  And it's exhausting!  Even watching the ever-gorgeous Bradley Cooper on The Graham Norton show last week (several times - thank you BBCiPlayer!) failed to bring nothing more than a faint smile to my face, and that was probably because he was sitting next to Jessica Biel at the time, and she's enough to make any self-respecting female feel inadequate!

Of course, I know I'm not the only one feeling this way.  I know there are hundreds, maybe thousands, of other indie authors out there going through exactly the same thing - I just thought that December might actually be a fairly good month for sales.  Am I being naiive here?  Probably.  I guess I just got quite used to seeing my book selling, and then for that to suddenly stop, well, it's been a little disheartening.  I mean - and, yes, this was just a tad irrational, I know - I was ready to pack it all in this week.  Just forget it, leave it alone, stop writing.  Walk away from my dream because it was doing nothing but making me depressed, and I always said that when writing wasn't fun anymore then I would stop.

However, after another viewing of Bradley Cooper's Graham Norton interview (this time ignoring Jessica Biel, hard though that was) I realised - and don't ask me why it was Bradley Cooper who helped me decide this, he just did! - that it wasn't the writing that had ceased to be fun.  No.  Writing these books is the bit I enjoy more than anything, I love it, I love everything about it.  Writing the books isn't the problem.  I have got so many stories fighting to get out that I know I could carry on writing for years and still probably never get all those stories written down.

The part of this process that is bringing me down the most is the constant feeling that I need to be always out there marketing, finding new ways to get my book noticed.  And I think I've just worn myself down to the point where I need to take a break from aggressive marketing and concentrate on writing for a change.  I started my new book way back in July, yet the first draft still isn't finished because I've spent so much time working myself into a frazzle trying to dream up new and innovative ways to market myself and my book.

So, sales figures may be disappointing - so far - for December, but that may change.  I can only keep my fingers crossed and see what happens.  But, as far as I'm concerned, I'm going to spend the rest of December concentrating on this new book, and remembering just why it was that I started writing in the first place.  And the answer's easy - because I love it.

Then I shall start the new year with a fresh approach and, hopefully, a clear head and a handful of new ideas so that I can step forward into 2012 and make sure that things in this indie authors life can only get better, because, as each day passes, I begin to understand more and more just what it is that I need to do.  There'll be lots more downs, as well as handfuls of highs, I'm sure of it.  But nobody said this would be easy.  And they certainly got that right!

Oh, and before I go, I'd just like to give a mention to a fabulous blogsite called Famous Five Plus, of which I'm a member.  It's a wonderful place for indie authors and book reviewers, a place where us authors can showcase our work, post about our journeys as writers, have our books reviewed - it's a place for support, more than anything.  A place where I've met some fantastic authors and reviewers, not to mention acquiring a list of books to read that is growing by the day!  So, I'd just like them to know how grateful I am to them for all the support and exposure they've given me and my books so far.  I truly am grateful.
Go on, go visit the site, and maybe you'll discover some new books to read, and meet some great authors!

A sexy, contemporary saga.
So, if you fancy taking pity on a struggling independent author - I'm a writer - I'm allowed to lay it on thick!! ;) - and you like your romance with a bit of a kick, or you just want a fun, frothy read, then why not make now the time to try out one of my books!


No Matter What , See You At The Show and Too Much Trouble in Paradise are all available from Amazon.co.uk 
and also here at Amazon.com
Edgy, sexy romance.


So, go on.  Grab an ebook bargain and put a smile on this independent author's face!!

A fun, frothy escape to the sun!
  


6 comments:

  1. Hope your sales pick up soon!

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  2. Thank you. :) It won't be for the want of trying!!

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  3. Ups & downs, I'm sure it will pick up soon.
    I love the Famous Five, so lovely when people get together & support each other. I'm all for that.
    Best wishes, Elle Xx

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  4. Thanks for recommending the Famous Five, I'll be sure to check them out.

    I'm new to the marketing side of things - finding that I'm a bit clueless at it to be honest! But it certainly seems more difficult and less fun than actually writing. I hope the feelings you're having pass quickly. You'll be guaranteed at least two sales in January because I'll be going on a spending spree when I get a Kindle, and there's still two books of yours I haven't bought yet! x

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  5. Sorry but I've read the starters to some of your books and they are not good. Very rambling and not gripping, simply not making me want to read more. Therefore I am not inclined to read further, or buy.
    Just some constructive criticism!

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  6. Don't you just love it when people leave "constructive criticism" which is anything but? I'd call it "mischief" and opinions which should not be aired. I don't think people realise how hard it is to be an Indie writer and a throw away remark can thrash your confidence. Just remember all the people who love your writing and that you can't please all of the people. Stick with it Michelle and don't give ONE person's opinion any weight. Hugs x

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