Congratulations, you’ve written a book! But now what?
Well, you’ve got to get it published, old chap! It you want to get it out into the world, that is. But more than simply getting published, being an author is a mindset. You have to get your mind into the right state so you can become truly successful. But don’t worry—we’re here to help you do it!
- Decide whether you want to go the traditional or self-published route. Traditional publishing’s definitely been around longer, but self-publishing offers far more choices to individual authors looking to build an authentic legacy. You also stand to gain much more financially by going the self-published route. And there’s nothing stopping a self-published author from printing a paperback (or even a hardback!) version of your book even if you don’t have a formal traditional publishing deal. The Internet has made so many different publishing options available. As an author, you need to think critically about what will sustain your writing life best, and what fits your vision of the future.
- Decide how you want your book to be available. We at Archangel Ink pride ourselves on being able to put an author’s book into several different formats. But when it comes down to it, how do you feel about your book potentially going into paperback? How do you picture a reading experiencing your book for the first time? That’s just as important to consider as the story itself!
- Start building an author profile. You can start talking about your book, but until you start talking about it consistently, on an online space, you’re not that much better off than when you were talking about it with friends at a coffee shop. You need to start calling yourself an author in as many places as possible if you want people to start taking you seriously as one. Add the phrase “author of the upcoming (name of your book)” it to your online profiles. You’ll see what it can do for your confidence.
- Make friends! Twitter has become an awesome place to meet fellow writers (and publishing houses, wink wink). There are lots of online events that center around authors, including the weekly hashtag gatherings #WriterWednesday and #Follow Friday (which can also be used to highlight friends and general fans). Just talking to fellow authors on a regular basis can increase your sense of being an author incredibly. Writers are also famously inclusive folks. Just drop in a tweet about editing some Wednesday—someone will sniff it out and commiserate. Just watch.
- Remember: Marketing Is Not Bragging. Everyone wants to punch those snobby jerks who won’t shut up about how their book’s the biggest thing in Malaysia right now (even though multinational marketing and getting as many translations out there as possible is very smart). What those people are doing is bragging. This is one hundred percent different than marketing, which sounds more like, “Hey, you like books. Would you like to read my book? I’m very proud of it.” That’s marketing, which can actually be very charming if you do it right. This goes doubly writing blog entries about your blog, going on tour, or even making advertisements for it. You’re not bragging about how your book’s the greatest thing since sliced bread. You’re geeking out about something you made, which is great.
- Picture your ideal life as an author. Are you the kind of author that tours six months out of the year? Or are you the type to hold Google Chats and Facetime sessions with fans of your work? Picturing yourself as a working author not only builds your confidence but also helps you develop goals. Picturing yourself as Gore Vidal or George R.R. Martin says volumes about your personal goals as a writer. That’s helpful to know!
- Never stop writing. Even if you become an awesome-possum writing superstar, don’t forget to write! An author’s career is hardly ever over, whether you’re marketing or actively making a book. Enjoy the timelessness of it! You can retire whenever you like, but there’s a beauty to having a job that you can do at any age. Plus, the more you write, the better you become at writing. So keep doing it!
How do you picture yourself as a writer? How do you keep an author-ish mindset? Tell us in the comments!