Wednesday, February 26, 2014


Read yet another article about a writer who got a big advance and thought they were set, only to find that when the book didn't sell well they were dropped by their publisher.

It's a little hard to feel sympathy for people who get six figure advances and blow it.

But anyway, a little research should have warned them.  And maybe a little more humility.  And caution.

Ignorance is bliss.  If you know what you're up against, you may not even start.  But high expectations are dangerous.

When anyone talks "Hollywood" I just roll my eyes.  I'd be better served going and buying 10.00 worth of lottery tickets. 

I want my books to do well, of course.  But there are a ton of books out there.  Tons and tons.

As a bookstore owner, maybe I know this more than most people.  Just checking the book liquidations lists every week is enough to give you a chill.  These are good books, folks.  Some of them I've even read.  But they are being dumped.

My own expectations are -- to get published and to be paid something for the effort.  More as a marker that someone thinks the effort is worthy enough to gamble their own money on -- than any expectations of monetary rewards.  My second expectation is to have a print book in my hands.  A physical object.

I've already attained those two goals -- anything beyond this is pure gravy.

I'm being unbelievably promotional minded right now, very chatty.  I'm proud of the book -- I'd like people to read it.  So I'm willing to go out of my comfort zone for awhile in order to tell other people about it.

I understand that no one is going to know or care unless I make this effort.

But I know it won't last.  It can't last.  I couldn't live with myself nor could others live with me.  Besides, it takes away from the actual writing.

Writing and promotion are two completely different things.  The more you do of one, the less you do of the other.

At least for me.

Of course, like any writer, I can see a hazy alternate universe where my book is hugely successful and I never have time to write.  Because that would be enormously distracting, you know?

But I'd be willing to risk it...

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