Friday, June 19, 2015

Are You Really Prepared?

I have talked a lot about rushing through the publishing process.Too often, and for various reasons, authors start pitching to editors and agents or submitting projects for consideration, or even worse, get that book out there in a self publishing format, and then realize they might not be ready. The end result is not just a small hiccup in their writing careers, but more than likely a complete standstill. It really is a shame, but so many authors give up because they jumped in before they were ready.

This is not something that we see happen only in publishing. I have seen it with the sports my kids have been involved with. Kids advance too quickly to a more advanced dance group and can't keep up (we lost a great dancer this year because she advanced too quickly). My son's swim team has had kids move to higher swim groups, only to find their bodies and muscles can't keep up with the workouts. Kids now have injuries that might have been prevented. Even with horse riding, we have seen far too many get into horses that are simply too much for them. Now they are out a lot of money and a lot of wasted time.

In publishing, you have to ask yourself the same thing. Are you really ready to move on, or are you doing this because of the pressure to publish? It's one thing to say you can meet those deadlines, but when the pressure is on, can you produce. Sure you did it for that NaNoWriMo, but you know that was not the best. You have a lot of editing to do before that story is going to be ready!

What about keeping up with the business side of things. The more you publish, the more time you will now spend marketing those books, and that WILL cut into your writing time. You will now be expected to be at conferences, to present at workshops, to teach online classes, and yes, your editor will keep screaming about that next draft.

Are you really ready for those reviews? Again, it is amazing how many people say they like feedback, but in reality, the only feedback they tend to like is the good stuff. Are you ready for that one person who can completely ruin your great writing day with a negative comment about your latest story on the Barnes and Noble reviews? Are you really ready for when your editor looks at your next proposal, the one you worked really hard on, only to be told this is not going to work?

The deal is this. Publishing is not just about writing a story and sticking it out there for people to buy. Publishing is a game of endurance. It is a game of mental strength. Are you up for that challenge?

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