Here are some miscellaneous thoughts about promoting a self-published book.
The image is the writing inspiration collage above my desk 🙇♂️
- It’s a slow burn. My day job means I’m used to immediate, tangible metrics. Sending a book into the world and not knowing whether people have read it, or even received it, is weird.
- My default response is dejection. My brain perceives the lack of immediate feedback as a lack of interest (or worse), meaning I feel dejected unless I take active steps not to.
- It feels awesome when an order comes through. I thought the feeling would dissipate after a while, but the latest order was just as exciting as #1.
- It’s especially cool when the order is from someone I don’t know. At first it was family, friends, and friends of friends. The first order from someone I don’t know in real life was a cool milestone.
- More so when they’re on the other side of the world. An order came in from someone I don’t know, in New Zealand. Literally the furthest away a customer can be. Which means I’ve gone global 🌎
- Hustling feels weird. I’ve got a big list of people to tell, including authors, magazines, tourism sites, and so on. Every message I send feels audacious and unwelcome.
- Something is better than nothing. I’ve put off contacting some people because I can’t think what to say, but I’ve realised saying something is better than never actually managing to get in touch.
- People reply! I’ve had positive responses from some people I never expected to get back to me, which is awesome.
- Other people don’t reply! Which is fine: thankfully my day job has got me used to minimal response rates to emails.
- It’s worth collating the good stuff. I have a Google Doc of nice things people have said about the book, my writing, and whatever else. Skimming through it does wonders to counteract the dejection.
- The balance shifts slowly. Dejection is a default response to a new rhythm, and I feel it shifting over time towards something more positive as I get used to things.
- Momentum builds. Orders are trickling in. Reviews are trickling in. The flywheel is starting to turn, and who knows what will happen next.
[More to come, probably]