Nell Iris

Five confessions

11 Comments

I’m terribly behind in this month’s Camp NaNoWriMo because I’ve spent most of July being sick with a sore throat, fever, and the most stubborn cough you can imagine.

I may or may not have eaten an entire pint of Ben&Jerry’s Peanut Butter Cup ice cream the other day when I read and critiqued my friend’s WIP. But everyone knows ice cream is the best medicine for a sore throat, right?

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I hate promoting myself. I am NOT a sales person: if I needed to take a job in sales I would starve to death and be thrown out on the street because I couldn’t sell water to a dehydrated person in the Sahara Desert if my life depended on it. Putting myself out there, saying Buy my books, they’re great! is really, really hard for me. I mean, there’s a reason I want to be a writer: I can stay indoors all day and work in my underwear and not have to meet anyone except for my husband. Introverts make sucky salespeople. And because I don’t know how to sell stuff—especially myself—I don’t have any great promo ideas. What can I do to promote my books? Got any great ideas? Except for becoming filthy rich so I can hire someone to do the promo for me?

I’m in a blogging funk and have no idea what to write about. Not just here, but in my private blog that I’ve loved and maintained for 11 years. It got to the point where my mom gave me the stink eye because I wasn’t updating it: Your poor mother has NO IDEA what’s going on in your life anymore since you don’t UPDATE YOUR BLOG. Ouch. For this blog, I’m trying to figure out some kind of schedule so I have a plan to stick to. Themes for the different days. Like on Mondays I post X, Wednesdays Y, and Fridays Z. Now I just gotta figure out what XYZ are. What do you like to read about on author blogs?

I’m in a funk in general and feel like I suck as a writer. And I’m not writing this to get pats on the back or assurances that I don’t suck, but just to be honest and since I’m apparently in the business of confessing this Sunday. Why should I write, when there are so many writers out there so much better than me? Do my stories matter to anyone but me? Would anyone even care if I didn’t write anymore? Why should I finish my current WIP, it’s not like I’m gonna know how to promote it properly anyway?

See? A terrible funk. I don’t know how to pull myself out of it. I need to figure out how to stop comparing myself to others, have some faith in myself, and remember that I write because I love it. Sounds easy enough, don’t you think? (<- irony)

Wasn’t this a happy and uplifting blog post? I’ll stop whining now, make myself a cup of coffee and do a 15-minute writing sprint on my NaNo project. I got words to write and bootstraps to pull myself up by.

Have a great Sunday.

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11 thoughts on “Five confessions

  1. aww I’m sorry to hear that you’re in a funk. I always think a good way to promote is to share positive reviews. Since your book is currently owned by the publishers you can’t set up more passive ads through amazon. (You could always write a short story and give it away as an insensitive to join your mailing list. Then set up an email chain that will promote your other books. You’d only have to write the email once… but I know you’re not a huge newsletter fan) I think of sales like dessert. when you go to a restaurant and they ask if you want any dessert that’s a sale. That’s saying buy my book.

    As for the writing… when I don’t know Citizen Cain was made movies maker didn’t go ‘well that was the best movie ever. I’m not going to make any more movies because nothing can top that’ you’re stories are sweet and the words need some uplifting stores… especially after reading mine. haha

    Liked by 1 person

    • Since your book is currently owned by the publishers you can’t set up more passive ads through amazon. — Ah, but JM is very easy to work with regarding doing things like this. I’ve got an Amazon deal coming tomorrow (and she’s the one that suggested it). And if an author has set up their “author central,” they can add good soundbites from reviews to the “editorial reviews” section of the book.

      Another good type of promo is getting in on the deal when review sites run big promotions. I get so many hits on my website with The Romance Reviews semi-annual “parties,” and I notice a boost in Amazon rank. Diverse Reader’s in the middle of one that I missed the boat on this time around, but got a boost from last time she did something similar. Ellie…you’re great at writing guest posts. Instead of only posting them on your own blog, submit requests for that at popular review/blogger sites. Many of them have links for that kind of thing.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Huh, I had no idea I could request to have a guest post featured. I guess I thought that was something you got asked to do, like when Divine Magazine asked me. I’m definitely going to check out that opportunity. And the Diverse Reader you mention, is that the Christmas in July thing? In that case, I noticed it too late too, but I will be on a lookout for things like that. And I went ahead and liked Romance Reviews, because I hadn’t done that before.

        I have an author central on Amazon. Have you noticed more interest when you add stuff to the “editorial reviews”?

        Also: I’ve booked an advertising spot on Diverse Reader in September, so I’m hoping that will turn out okay.

        An Amazon deal is what? A sale?
        And yes, JM is very easy to work with, I really like that about her. I mean: when I submitted Cinnamon Eyes it took her less than an hour to respond and accept. How long have we waited for DSP to get back to us? A million years? And we still haven’t heard from them 😀

        Liked by 1 person

        • You can set up an account at The Romance Reviews here: http://www.theromancereviews.com

          You can add your books to your account and request reviews if you want. If you put their banner on your blog (sidebar or footer), then you’ll earn points toward getting free advertising and can get on the mail list to be notified of promo opportunities. 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

        • Yes, the Christmas in July thing is what I mean for Diverse reader.

          It’s good exposure. It’s hard to say on the “editorial reviews.” I put them up as early as possible when there still tends to be heavier sales anyway. Can’t hurt, I wouldn’t think. I modeled mine off the way some mainstream books formatted theirs. The key, I’ve heard, is to make them short sound bites.

          Yes, I meant a special sale on Amazon. I think they’ve also got “daily deals,” but it’s next to impossible to be accepted for that.

          Liked by 1 person

    • I am thinking about a newsletter, but I haven’t decided yet. If I’m going to do it, I’m going to give away something for free if people sign up. I’m still not convinced, but I’m thinking about it.

      And thank you. We should make a package deal where my books are the antidote to your dark killing sprees 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh, sweetie…even though you said you didn’t post this for reassurances, I’m going to reassure you anyway. Your stories are wonderful. Don’t worry, we all go through this phase (over and over, I’m afraid). You’re doing fine on promo, and you’re getting your name out there with sweet short stories so you already have some fans for when your novel is released.

    As for “there are so many writers out there so much better than me,” that’s subjective. One person’s auto-buy is another person’s DNF. Never doubt that you have great stories to tell, and that you’re already very good at doing it. And don’t think there won’t be some negative ratings/reviews regardless. Don’t take them personally. Look at the variety of bad ones on stories you love, and good ones on stories you hate. I’ve been in awe from the get-go at how well you express yourself in a language that isn’t even your first.

    Writing well is a learnable skill, and I’m still working on improving my own with each new story. Your first stories are far better than my first efforts, years ago, were. As for blogging, I don’t know what to tell you. Your posts are already far more interesting than mine. I need to learn from you on that, not the other way around. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wow, Addison. I can’t begin to tell you how much this meant to me. Your kind encouragement brought a tear to my eye, and also kicked my butt in gear so I wrote lots of words and caught up on my NaNo word count. You are an amazing friend and I am SO happy I found you ❤️❤️

      Liked by 1 person

      • ♡ Could you kick my butt into gear while you’re at it? I’m so far behind I’m pretty sure I’m going to have to modify my already paltry goal. :-/

        And likewise! You are the best!

        Liked by 1 person

        • If your word count progress on the NaNo site is correct, then yes, you’re behind. But so what? It’s perfectly okay to lower your goal. It’s better to adjust it and make it realistic than to set yourself up for failure. Better than going around feeling like crap the rest of the month because you know you won’t make it. So lower the goal and give yourself a chance to conquer it!! I would have done exactly that if I hadn’t caught up. ❤️

          Liked by 1 person

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