I saw this picture today and it really made me think. One thing I’m proud of is that, even when people said I was crazy, I’ve always followed my dreams. Less than a year ago, I decided that after a lifetime of making up funny stories in my head and being a compulsive reader, I wanted to write my own book – my own way. Less than a year later, I own my own publishing company and I’m about to release my fourth book. Best of all, my writing is really developing.
I frequently have people share with me that they dream about becoming authors too. So here’s my advice to other dreamers – do it. Don’t let people tell you that you can’t or limit you in any way. Dream big and don’t limit yourself either. Do it your way. Be an original and be brave enough not to follow the pack.
Even though I haven’t been doing this very long, I also have some general advice. Don’t get caught up with meaningless, superficial things. People will forget the best seller du jour but they will remember a good book. Talk to your readers and really listen to them. Don’t just market to them. Don’t get caught up in petty drama. It’s a waste of time and energy and it will destroy your creativity and your soul. Don’t see other authors as competition; see them as colleagues. Don’t waste time having a chip on your shoulder. Some readers will always assume that “indie” means low quality. They are naive and it’s their loss. Some authors will always assume that “being published” is what every author should aspire to. They’re naive too – every book and every author is unique. Don’t focus on the the 3 R’s – Ratings, Rankings and Royalties. Focus on becoming the best writer you can be. Be patient, stay grounded and keep everything in perspective. Don’t read bad reviews – in fact – only read the good ones people ask you to read.
Most of all, though, stay true to yourself. Write the book you want to write – the book that only you can write. You have nothing to lose in trying to learn how to write a book if you want to, and you have everything to gain. I have helped many authors just starting out. Don’t be afraid to approach me and ask me anything you want about the writing or the self-publishing process. I’m willing to help if I can.