Your Book is a Product and Should be Treated as One
Your Book is a Product and Should be Treated as One.
I feel that MANY writers, if not the majority, don’t want to see it this way.
I get it.
It’s not ANY product. It is your BABY. You’ve spent weeks to months to years to DECADES to WRITE IT. You’ve read it so many times you’ve lost count. You’ve edited every word of it and by that, you mean it, EVERY word. These characters are a part of you and this worldbuilding took you so much time.
However, unfortunately, this is the case only for us.
That’s also why so many writers are VERY frustrated.
They put so much love and thought to their books and then when it’s published, nobody cares. Literally nobody. They can’t sell it. Maybe one copy for their mom. If they want to traditionally publish, they query 100 times and get rejected so many times that the fun is lost. Their self-esteem goes to the ground. You think you suck. You think your book is horrible and that’s why nobody wants to read it or no agent will get it.
This is not the case.
You might suck or not. This doesn’t matter. The reason you can’t sell it be direct to the readers or to the agents is that you don’t treat your baby book as a product. Because that’s what it is.
What does it mean to say that a book is a product?
It means that if you want to succeed and one day become a full-time writer, it has to be economically viable.
You’ll have to learn a bit of business administration because that’s what you’re going to be: a small business owner.
You’ll HAVE TO learn marketing.
And you can’t spend a decade writing a single book. I’m sorry, but you can’t.
I mean, of course, you can. If you want this to be a side thing. However, if you REALLY want to MAKE IT as a writer, you can’t.
The truth is: the book market is not very promising. Nobody reads anymore. You’re competing with old-time best-sellers. With books that were written 20 years ago and still are going STRONG (cof, cof Harry Potter, cof, cof Game of Thrones, cof, cof Tolkien… do you know any of these names?)
If you are a new writer and get an agent, then this agent must find a publisher. They might not even get to this point and your deal might fail. If they get a publisher, the publisher must get your book into the bookshops. Good ones. If they are able to do it, your book must be in a great position INSIDE the bookstore because if it is in any bookshelf, it also won’t get found.
So… does it convince you that even if traditionally publishing, you will NEED to market it?
Now, if you are taking the incredible route of self-publishing, then I don’t even need to begin that you’ll have to tell EVERYONE BY YOURSELF of your book.
The difference between traditional and indie is basically that publishers have a lot of distribution channels already ready for your book. Even so, this is not enough. Self-publishing, you’re alone.
That’s why you need to stop treating your book as your son and start seeing it in an economically viable way.
Like I told you, this is the case if you want to succeed as a writer.
Some people just want to draw, they don’t want to be an artist, and there is NOTHING wrong with that.
Some people just want to write, they don’t want to have a fanbase, readers, make money. Again, NOTHING wrong with that.
But, if you do want, then repeat after me: my book is a product. Like any product, I’ll need to market it, it doesn’t matter which route I want to take. Also, I can’t spend literally 10 years producing it and expect to get tons of money.
You also can’t spend A LOT of money on it without knowing if you’ll ever get it back.
This is BAD for you. This will make you think that you are a horrible writer, who spend 4000$ editing their book and then you’re only able to sell 10$. This is bad for your self-esteem, for your self-worth. You’ll think that you suck.
But the truth is: you don’t suck. You are simply not thinking in a business-like way.
You need to grow your image. That’s the reason to create an author’s blog. You’ll need to get on social media and promote yourself and your book. Maybe even go to events, fairs. Get in podcasts, Youtube channels, interviews, everything. You need to spread the word of your product.
Every company thinks like that. If they create a product, they don’t spend 10.000$ in it and develop it FOR YEARS without having a plan of reaching a public to get this investment back.
Us, writers, we do that. We spend A LOT in our books and we don’t care about marketing. We think that it will magically sell. We don’t need social media, a platform, nor even to tell our friends.
The worst part is when we compare ourselves with old writers. Ah, but Tolkien didn’t do it. J.K. Rowling didn’t do it.
The times have changed.
And you don’t know what they used to do.
Many of them were journalists, they used to publish in small magazines and newspapers until they got a name for themselves.
Now, the name of the game is digital marketing.
You can do it, you can grow as a writer, you CAN make a full-time living with books.
People that say you can’t are probably the ones I’ve said here. The ones that believe that it will magically sell itself, even though NO product works like this, NO COMPANY believes in this. But they do. And when they can’t, they get frustrated and say “it is impossible to live as a writer”.
Yes, it is impossible to live as a writer. If you are not willing to treat your book like a product, market it, look at it in an economically viable way instead of thinking that it’s your newborn son that you must protect at all costs!
If you want to know more about marketing and start treating your book as a product, welcome, this is your place!
I want to make sure that you understand that I’m not shaming anyone that doesn’t want that. It is TOTALLY fine to write as a hobby. To not want to be a best-seller or have a readership.
However, I am shaming those who say that it’s impossible to succeed as a writer just because they did everything wrong and never bothered to grow as a one-person-company that being an author is.
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