My debut novel, THE VAMPIRE’S PASSION, has been out for over three months now, and I’m ready to reflect upon this singular experience. What a journey—most of which was chronicled here in this blog. But it turns out that those early frustrations and concerns were only the beginning of the learning curve. It turns out that publication is a learning experience all of its own.
Things I’ve learned since April 7th:
· Hitting that SEND button when you send your manuscript and query letter off to a publisher or agent isn’t NEARLY as scary as worrying if anyone will buy your book once it comes out.
· Worrying if anyone will buy your book isn’t as scary as worrying that they won’t like it.
· Hiding your true identity behind a pen name so that the parents of the children you have taught over the last bazillion years and having your true identity come out just before publication and knowing that these lovely people WILL be reading your book, might keep an author up at night.
· Learning the ins and outs of how to promote a book is enough to make your head spin. What is a ‘blog tour’? How do you set up a blog tour? Who are these people who organize blog tours, and what should you reasonably expect to pay them for this service?
· Learning how Facebook promotions work can lead to overindulging in the red wine. I have book promo sites figured out, but I still have no idea what a Facebook party is, or how it works, or what you do at one. Do you make appetizers and have chilled wine available for your guests? REALLY I want to know! If some kind reader could explain Facebook parties to me I would be ever so grateful.
· Discovering the kindness of fellow writers has been a lovely surprise. Not that we aren’t a kind group of people! I love my writer friends! But I was moved that friends and strangers approached me with invitations to guest on their blogs. It was great fun, and I am so appreciative of them.
I can’t think of any more present participles with which to begin bulleted paragraphs, so I’ll just close this post by saying that despite the publication learning curve, it has been a wonderful experience. There is nothing in life like fulfilling a dream that you’ve held since you were twelve years old.
Recently, I finished the manuscript for a YA fantasy, and it is now out on submission. I also just finished a novella, which is a prequel for THE VAMPIRE’S PASSION. Fingers crossed on both.
The journey continues…