Facts of Life,  Indie Author Life,  Writing Journey,  Writing World

Writing & Marketing & Overwhelm

Last week, I had no less than 75 tabs open across all of my devices. It might go without saying, but I was past the point where this was stressing me out.

You might be wondering what all these tabs were. A few were things like my WordPress feed that I leave open every day or tabs I didn’t need open anymore and just forgot to close. Most were publishing and marketing articles, and honestly, the vast majority of them were not even helpful.

To minimize future stress, the number of tabs allowed open on my computer going forward is 15, and the max on my mobile devices is 7. Trust me, compared to what I had, this looks close to nothing. To further minimize stress, I’ve decided to stop reading publishing and marketing articles for the time being. I get enough information from the publishing podcasts I check in on. I can’t handle anymore information right now. Or more tabs open on my browsers. I’m working my way down to 7 across the board. 😢

In marketing news, you may or may not have heard that Goodreads will be charging $119 per book, per giveaway, as of Jan 9th. On one hand, I can afford to run a giveaway once or twice a year. I can switch to ebook giveaways, which would help offset the costs of printing and shipping. I’d be able to give more books away. But on the other hand, I question the worth of the program in general. The truth is, when you’re a newly published writer, especially of the indie variety, it’s very hard to get people to care about your book. Most marketing efforts, including giveaways, have a poor ROI at this stage. But what are you guy’s honest opinions about it? Should it be part of the launch plan for Book Three?

I’ve pretty much decided to try NetGally through Xpresso Book Tours’ co-op or whatever it’s called. It’s far less expensive than trying to sign up myself. And less stressful. I have to keep in mind how much everything is going to cost as a whole. I might be rolling in writer dough one day, but I have two books out. I’m not rolling in any kind of dough right now.

I need to make final decisions soon. April 3rd πŸ˜€ is around the bend, and I need this stuff figured out by the end of January so I can make early preparations and shift my focus to my top secret duology. πŸ˜›

Of course, anything I do is going to make me nervous. Especially since I once again have a story on my hands that’s very different from the previous one, and β€œthey” tell you not to do that. (FYI – Books four and five will also be different.) But all my books are dark, fantastical, and fictional, so it’s under a similar umbrella to me. πŸ˜€ Plus, I did find one author who said not to worry about stuff like that when you’re a newly published author, because no one cares. Hearing from him that I didn’t need to write a series OR worry about marketing was a huge relief, because he’s a millionaire and lives on a yacht now. πŸ˜€

In writing news, I’m struggling to edit. Of course line edits are always so much fun (cough*cough), but it’s not that. It’s because it’s December, and I always have a rough time motivating myself when I’m cold. I just want to curl up on the couch with popcorn and Netflix. In any case, I’m forcing myself to do a chapter a day. Eventually, I’ll start to actually enjoy myself, regardless of warmth level.

I was also slowed down because I had to start my outline over from scratch last week, but I rather start over now then have a mess on my hands later. It’s not a big deal. The character told me where to start the story and what the backstory was with her and this guy, and I didn’t follow the timeline regarding that for some reason. So, I had to go back and redo it. I almost put this story aside again, because like I said, motivation is LOW, but the MC, who’d been taking a nap, temporarily woke up and gently bit my head off to get me back on the right path. ^_^ Love her so much. πŸ’œ

So, I’m slowly working on keeping the general overwhelm to a minimum, but the struggle is real. πŸ™‚


  • Michelle Athy

    I feel like the crawl to holiday season is stressful for a lot of people (haha, I’m about to have my hell week at work next week. I already had one customer yell at me irrationally on Sunday because I asked her if she had our department store credit card and she snapped back with “I want to know the price” and “You have such an attitude.”) Definitely close out your tabs. Concentrate on your line edits, take a break, then get back to your outline. πŸ™‚

    I hadn’t heard that Goodreads was going to charge–I know they were going to charge or are charging for ebook giveaways, I think. But like you, I’m skeptical of doing giveaways. How many reviews do they actually result in?

    And I wouldn’t worry about only writing books in one niche. I know of several authors who’ve written all kinds of books, in different subgenres or different categories and genres entirely. I guess a series can catch new readers and there’s that natural interest in continuing on, but I’ve read a lot of first books in series and did not move on to the second, so it’s not foolproof.

    • Krystal Jane

      Thanks for the pep talk on all this! ^_^

      Yay, retail. LOL! We don’t have too many rude people, but we have people who will touch and cough on everything in one section, ask a billion questions, and then pay with a bunch small bills after wet coughing all over their hands first. I’m already in fight mode to keep the plague at bay. I appreciate them telling us they have pneumonia so we can take precautions, but why are you out of the house?!

      Yeah, Goodreads is charging for both print and ebooks. As far as reviews go, giveaways result in next to none. I’ve gotten one so far, which I’m thrilled about – that’s how low the return is. I’ve seen other people say they’ve gotten 0 or 2 of several books given away. I’ve personally read 2 of 3 books that I won this year, but I literally got the third book a week ago.

      Series are definitely not foolproof – even with Harry Potter, I know people who read the first book or two and then just watched the movies. 😐 LOL!

  • Tonja Drecker

    First off, Netflix is research. πŸ˜‰ We need to feed future ideas with all sorts of things. As to giveaways. . .I’ve heard mixed things. Entries don’t necessarily mean interest in the book, and people wait to see if they win a book before really considering buying it. On goodreads, I can’t imagine it really helps much. For those authors who have several books in the world (especially series), the results seem to change a bit. Giving away the 1st book in the series does generate some sales (I’m told). Although offering it for free generates more than a giveaway can. The indie authors I know who are making a living on their sales, do it thanks to several series and simply by having a good number of books on the market. They push those books out hard and simply ignored the idea of generating any money until 4 or more books were out there.

    Lol! And it’s at times like these which I’m glad I’m not riding that horse yet πŸ™‚

    • Krystal Jane

      LOL! I’ve also heard the 4+ book thing, which honestly, takes a lot of pressure off. Plus, I’ve been reading more and more that it’s nearly pointless to invest in marketing when you only have a couple of books out. I figure by the time I get the second part of my duology out, I’ll be better able to judge what’s going to work for me and what isn’t. I can attest to giving away the 1st in a series to being a good strategy though, because that’s something that has worked on me. Haha. What I’m thinking is that I can organize the books that are similar to each other and maybe that will help with my lack of actually writing a series.

  • Thea Landen

    Oh, damn, I hadn’t heard about the Goodreads giveaway thing. Somehow, I’m not surprised. <_< I have mixed feelings about it/experiences with it in general, but that's a different story for a different day.

    I'll soon be with you in the editing boat, yaaaay. (I haven't decided if that's a genuine yay or a sarcastic yay yet. At least we're getting stuff done?)

    • Krystal Jane

      Lol! Yay for progress? πŸ˜€

      I’m not going to pitch a fit about the giveaway price, but methinks they inflate their worth.

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