What have I learned during this busy release week before the holiday? Well, once you hit release anything can happen. Now, lots of authors believe the holidays not a good time to sell books, but I'm staying true to how I started as an Indie in May 2014. When I finish a book, I hit release. That's my simple formula--and since this is my party--I'll do what I want to.
After that, no matter what you think you know, no matter how well you plan, just about anything can happen and you have to remember: roll with it, don't get frustrated and believe in yourself. I don't come out of the gate strong when I release a book. I have wonderful readers who are willing to take time over the holidays to spend with me in a book, but I'm not in any way to the point yet where releasing doesn't mean work, work, work. Staying a realist is about the most important thing you can do for your author sanity.
There was a book once--Everything I Needed to Know I learned in Kingergarden or some such title. I pretty much feel that way about being an Indie author. Everything I needed to know I learned before I decided to self-publish. That the market exists primarily in social media doesn't change the tenets I live by. I have only a short list of truisms, but it's held true through all my releases:
1. Do what you love, do it how you love it, and forget everything else.
2. Be kind to everyone--treat them how you'd like to be treated.
3. Don't ask for things from people. You wouldn't walk up to someone in your office and ask them to help sell your whatever. Don't randomly message and tag authors with "help me messages". I do help people, all the time, but never in that context and never with an expectation of it being returned. If you can't do it from your heart, then don't do it.
4. Define your own success. If you watch what Jane Doe is doing(and it happens to be releasing her first book and having it shoot up to #1 in half a minute) that isn't about you. Aspire to be Jane Doe, but don't let it drive you crazy.
5. If things aren't working, it's time to roll up your sleeves, switch it up, and get to work. There are authors out there that everything they publish seems to turn to success without effort(seems it the operative work because believe me that doesn't happen by accident) but most of us will always have to work hard to get noticed.
My list may not make you rich, but it'll help keep you happier in this market where a lot exists to disturb your inner happiness.
That said, I've loved every minutes of this journey I started 2 1/2 years ago: losing myself in stories, the thrill I still get when I hit release, the work, my wonderful readers who are so kind to me, and the belief that anything is possible.
Thank you all for being on this journey with me.
As ever, I wish you peace and happy reading!!
PS: there can be magic in indie land....if you believe...if you believe...believe in yourself.