Welcome back! And for you new folks, a quick intro. Each week I’ll be posting to share my own adventures as an indie-author. What works…what doesn’t… and what I learn along the way. If you’ve spent any time in the indie-author world, you have probably learned that there is no “one right way” — each of our journeys is different and unique — but I hope you’ll find some tidbits here that may be helpful as we navigate through 2019.
This Past Week…
So… if you remember from last week’s post, I spent a fair chunk of time ‘plotting’ out my 2019 writing schedule and what I wanted to accomplish this year.
It was hefty and rather ambitious, even by my own standards!
- 4 full-length fantasy novels
- 8 novellas
- 4 nonfiction how-to books
Also, for those who aren’t familiar with my story, I also run a tech company which provides tech services for authors… so, definitely a busy year planned.
I had some time to sit with my schedule and goals for 2019, and I learned something very valuable.
I’ve been reading a book by Gary Keller and Jay Papasan called: The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results. And I will share two things about this book… (1) every indie author I know should read it… and (2) it is so simplistic, yet so brilliant. (go pick up a copy!)
Using what I’m learning from their book, I began to reexamine my plans for 2019.
Don’t settle… but be flexible!
My goals are still exactly the same as they were… ambitious, and maybe a bit larger than what I can realistically do this year… but gosh dang it… they are my plans, and I’m still shooting for them 100%.
BUT… if you learn anything as an indie it is that you have to be flexible and agile.
So, I sat with my writing schedule and my goals and I looked at them through fresh eyes after reading ONE Thing.
It occurred to me, like a smack upside the head, that I stand a MUCH better chance to reach my financial goals for 2019 much sooner in the year if I prioritize my writing schedule differently.
I.E., which books do I plan to write this year could give me the most momentum the quickest.
Makes sense, right? Sometimes you have to sit with your ideas for a few days (or week) to be able to see them more clearly.
It makes more sense for me to prioritize the next book in my current series *before* the passion projects of companion novellas or even the nonfiction titles.
On Amazon (and probably other retailers as well), there is the 30-day, 60-day, and 90-day “cliff” that indies run into. It is precisely these cliffs that precipitate the need for rapid release publishing – or at least trying to publish every 60-90 days… this keeps your books and author name fresh in the algorithms… meaning more visibility… meaning more chance for sales.
AND… with a series, that means if someone finds your series — and likes it — they are more likely to buy the other books in the series.
Compared to a brand new series (which won’t have additional books released yet), or non-fiction how-to books, which may not have as much sell-through to the other books.
Work hard, yeah, of course… but work SMART.
What I Accomplished
Also… if I can make one little recommendation… take time each day, even if it’s only a few minutes, to jot down what you DID that day. The things you actually got done. Whether it is something as menial as a load of laundry or as awesome as an entire chapter written or edited.
Why? Sometimes as indie-authors, we lose sight of what we actually get done each day. It’s easy to do in this hectic, busy world. And we start feeling like we aren’t “getting anywhere”. But ANY forward progress is still progress – and having a daily reminder you can look back through your calendar at gives you that proof.
This past week I:
- Presented two sessions in the Finding the Writer Within conference (SO MUCH FUN!)
- Sent in my submission for the Maureen Egen Writers Exchange award
- Taught a tech-author live class
- Recorded a masterclass on book trailers for authors 101
- LEARNED A HUGE LESSON with the ONE Thing book
- Began reorganizing my schedule & plans for 2019 to maximize their impact
- PLUS… I also “lived” life each day – I’m a single-mama, so meals, laundry, all of those pesky little real life things still needed doing
So, yeah, while I didn’t feel like I made much progress… being able to look back at my calendar this past week and see all the things I actually DID was a huge “keep going you’ve got this” push.