The book launch “Mystery Rock,” the first in a series of tourism fiction novels aimed at families and middle school readers, began in earnest at the first of the month. Preparing for the book launch began MONTHS earlier. Despite all that I have done, I am learning that there is always something else that should have been done, needs to be done, or could have been done better.
No wonder marketing magicians get the big bucks. This feels like work.
The moment I wrote those words, I realized the problem. Many people struggle with marketing because they do not approach it as work. Marketing is a fluke. It happens if you are one of the lucky one. Even better, it happens because someone else found that easy button for you.
The truth of the matter is that all “over-night success” stories put years of hard work and resources into that success. It feels like work because it is work.
I recently read through The 90 Day Plan to Marketing Your Book and walked away exhausted. How on earth is a writer supposed to write AND do all of the things mentioned in the book? “There are not enough hours in the day to do it all.” I confess I mentioned this to my oldest son while we sat and watched a rerun of “Cutthroat Kitchen” on Netflix.
Tips for Launching Your Writing from Hobby to Business
1. Treat the writing as a business. Set aside a certain number of hours to write each day and then DO IT. Create a budget for the business and stick to it. Have a plan for the business and follow through with that plan. I can write words and even make a living with those words, but until I look at it as a business I will never be in a position to turn my writing into a business.
2. Kick the distraction habit. I learned which stars married ordinary people yesterday. I had no need of the knowledge, but I clicked on the link anyway. I took a test to see why I am struggling in my finances. I had no need to take the test because I already know the answer, but I clicked the link anyway. It is a discipline thing – and I have to continually remind myself to stick to the schedule. Several months ago, I began making use of a timer for working through social media and emails. It worked then, but I let it go. It may be time to get back into the habit of limiting my surfing so that I can focus that surfing to things that are beneficial to turning my writing into a business.
3. Continue learning about writing, about marketing, and about the publishing industry. Learning does not mean I have to follow the path well-traveled. It just means that I become aware of what is going on around me. It may also mean that I discover a new niche within that well-traveled path. Learning also keeps me growing and changing and that is essential for turning my writing into a business.
4. Stop looking out to find the answer. Others can give me guidance. Others can tell me their experiences. Others can provide help and encouragement. Others will never be able to tell me about my path or make my path a reality. I am responsible for my journey.
5. Believe in the possibility. I am a writer. I am turning my writing into a business because I know in my heart that it is possible. It does not always feel possible. It does not always look possible. Others may not always support the possibility. But I BELIEVE – and as long as I continue to take action towards that belief then it IS possible.
It would be nice if I could trade my cow for a magic bean of success – only I have no cow. It would be nice if my fairy godmother would wave her wand and give me success – only it would fade by midnight because fairy godmother success if fleeting. My success will happen when I stop looking at what I am doing as a hobby and I begin to invest in turning my writing into a business.