Over the years, you have heard me talk about author exposure. We know that this works. The more the readers see your name in print, sales increase. Readers get in the habit of saying, "Oh, there's the latest book from my favorite author." They know that when they read that author, they always get the same great experience and the same quality book. So, what does that mean? An author needs to be always writing and always producing. But here is the caveat. They need to be producing the same style of book and the same quality of book.
I bring this up because I have heard, over the years, a lot of authors complaining about sales. The numbers are just not there. These same authors also complain that when offered more books in a contract, will spread these books out in a large span over time because they "can't write that book in that amount of time." Some times they will say they simply cannot write that many books, period. But why?
Because many of these authors are spending their time writing in genres to "expand their name." Let me explain.
Let's say you write contemporary romance. You can normally produce 3-4 books a year. if you devoted the full amount of time on that genre. This is the one you have a contract with. That's good. But now, that time is decreased because you "really want to write gritty thrillers" or you "hear that paranormal is back and you want to dive into that." Your time now writing the books that are truly making you money has decreased.
Do not get me wrong. There is nothing wrong with writing other things. But we have several things to consider here.
1) Until you really start selling and start making a profit on that new line, you are in a negative cash flow situation.
2) If this is a new genre for you, it will take time to fully learn all that you can to make your books successful.
3) If you are going to do this as a self-published gig on the side, you are now in charge of all the marketing, and business side of things (which of course means more time lost).
4) THIS IS THE BIG ONE!!!!! Your readers who love you for your contemporary stories are probably not going to follow you. Remember, they go to those contemporary projects because that is what they like. You are doing something different!
The key to your success is to build your brand! That means making sure you have a great following and you are making the most of it. This takes time! Dabbling in other areas is fine as well, AS LONG AS IT DOES NOT TAKE AWAY FROM YOUR OTHER WRITING.
Don't sacrifice the thing you are successful with for something that is not going to advance your career.