I’m an author. Me too! I’m a writer. Me too!
Being an author, novelist, writer or whatever tag you place on yourself is a rather thankless occupation. After slaving away for months and months on end writing a great story and going through the pain of editing, proofreading, independent appraisal, finding an agent or publishing it yourself, what do you get?
If you’re lucky, some sales that go nowhere near paying for the time you spent writing, some good reviews, a lot of criticism and a feeling that you’d better start all over again. Better luck next time. We are all honest enough to know that a raging bestseller is rarer than rocking horse droppings, so we stay realistic yet pessimistic and fatalistic. With an occupation such as this, it is now such a pleasure to be able to discuss our woes with our fellow masochistic scribblers on social media. It helps to know that we’re not alone and from time to time gives us the opportunity to have a shoulder to cry on.
Well, in all honesty, I say to you get over it and get on with it. Getting all chummy and warm with other authors isn’t going to sell one single book.
When I looked at the profiles of a number of authors on Twitter is became clear from their followers and following that they consisted mainly of other authors, lit agents and book bloggers. What was missing were avid readers. Now I’m not pointing the finger here, as I was until recently as guilty as any. Until I realised my stupid mistake. I forgot about finding new readers for my books, and isn’t that exactly why we are on social media in such numbers?
So I have changed my outlook completely and now make a follow of anyone with anything at all to do with writing, editing, publishing or reviewing books as the exception. I know many of my readers and they are doctors, plumbers, nurses, PA’s, SAHM’s, carpenters and police just to name a few. So I’m off, hunting for tradesmen, bankers, clerks and gardeners.
So will you get out of the ‘Author Cuddle Huddle’ and start up conversations with those people who will, in the end, put food on the table?