Once again, I’m reminded of the mixed blessing of getting what you asked for. The other day, I spent some time looking back at some of my old posts, ones I wrote before publication of my novel. I was so upbeat then. My posts reflected optimism for my future as an author. I let the “baggage” that came with publication murder that.
I don’t like this gloomy person I’ve become. More than once lately, I’ve read a blog post written by a hopeful writer, and found myself sneering with cynicism. At least I had enough sense not to leave a comment revealing my negative opinion.
What changed me from a champion of writers to a cynic? In short—business. I bemoaned the necessity of adding book publicist to my role as writer, but what I actually did was replace one for the other. Big mistake!
After reading those old posts, there’s no question in my mind that I much prefer the writer me. I’m happy writing. It’s a great adventure. Oh sure, about every other day, I wailed that my writing was garbage, but I never really believed that because I had hope. I could learn. I could fix my mistakes. I could become the writer I wanted to be.
Then, I had to promote my writing. I suck at that. Really, truly, I do. And because I fail so miserably at it, my brain mixed up my view of myself as a marketer/publicist with my view of myself as a writer. I transformed into one ginormous Grumpy Bear that fails at promotion and never writes.
So, here’s my plan going forward. I will allow myself only one hour a week for the business side of publication. The rest of my time will be spent having fun—which mostly means writing, but also catching up on a couple other things I’ve put off for too long. Maybe I’ll even have time to play online again.
Promotion is a necessary evil, but only if I have a book to sell. If I don’t recapture that optimism, that glorious dream, I’m afraid I’ll give up writing completely … and that would be giving up on me.
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