Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Going from self to traditionally published puts you on an emotional rollercoaster. Well, at least I feel like I'm on one. When there's no news and nothing is happening (which I realize is because we're in that period where the book is just waiting to be released), my emotional level is on the low-low. I'm wondering if anybody's going to notice when it comes out. Will anybody even hear about it or read about it. Because that's where I feel like I am now. Just trying to reach a wider and different audience than I did when I was self published. It's like I feel like I've reached my limiting in reaching people as a self-published author. So, now, here I am with the same book, trying to self-promote, and trying to find and reach a new audience. So I'm brainstorming, trying to think of things I've never done before. How can I find and reach a new set of readers. It's tough.

Then there are glimmers of hope which causes my emotional level to rise. At least for a little while. Like I recently found out that Hyperion is going to run an ad in three nationally distributed magazines. Yea! So that will help me to reach a wider audience. Then, just yesterday, my editor told me that Walmart really liked my book and placed a sizable order for their stores nationwide. Now that's awesome. Everytime I go in Walmarts in the area, there are always women there browsing and picking out books. So don't think I won't be in my local Walmarts helping readers choose a selection to buy, then offering to autograph it for them. I'm going to have to ask for a Walmart smock to wear while I stand in the book aisle. LOL But, it's things like that that makes you say, maybe, okay maybe somebody new will hear about my book and want to pick it up.

As the release date gets closer, I get nervous. I feel butterflies in my stomach. It's a repeat of the first time you've ever released a book. All of those feelings I had the first time around are re-surfacing. Maybe it happens with every release? I don't know. But I tell you. It's nerve-wracking.

10 comments:

Rose Tue Aug 09, 11:39:00 AM EDT  

Wow-I can see how you can be emotional. This is real big-you know there are a lot of folks who don't support self published authors because they are not in the stores. But think of it this way, all those people who didn't pick up the book while you were own your own will now support you because to them you are now legit. Say a little prayer and remember you did a great job on your own-now you have a team to support your efforts so you will do twice as good. Wal-Mart is a big thing-that store on Florissant is always jammed pack especially by the books. Scope out that store-give me a holler and I'll stand there and scream when I see you with your book in my hand. Much love and congratulations sister.

Marcus Harris Tue Aug 09, 02:19:00 PM EDT  

Don't fret, Cherlyn. You didn't make it this far for nothing - and going from self-published to traditionally-published is nothing to sneeze at! Trust me: your book is gonna sell better than you can imagine right now. After all, don't forget about all of us loyal "foot soldiers" who are ready and willing to march your promotional campaign all over the country (just make sure a brotha gets an autographed copy in return, okay?).

princessdominique Tue Aug 09, 07:48:00 PM EDT  

I've been on the rollercoaster. Hang in there. You'll do fine!

Cherlyn Michaels Tue Aug 09, 08:41:00 PM EDT  

Rose,
Thank you so much for your words. We are definitely going to have to meet because I owe you a big ol' hug! And you know what, that store on W. Florissant is the EXACT store I was thinking about when I made that comment. Great minds think alike! You can be sure I'm going to email you when I do a "drop in signing!" LOL

Cherlyn Michaels Tue Aug 09, 08:43:00 PM EDT  

Marcus,

You're a gem! Thanks so much for the words of encouagement. You just don't know. Today, I've been slapped in the face with reality about quite a few things related to this book business. And,yes, we're going to have to make sure you get a signed copy in your hands. Preferrably signed by me. LOL (just kidding)

Cherlyn Michaels Tue Aug 09, 08:45:00 PM EDT  

Dom! Thanks for your encouragement! I'm so glad I have you to talk to. :-)

Sandra Wed Aug 10, 01:36:00 AM EDT  

This is what I'd do if I was in your situation. Keep writing. Submit articles online to keep your byline active. Here is a black woman magazine looking for writers.
http://www.bwmmag.com

Adrienne Kama Wed Aug 10, 10:25:00 AM EDT  

Being distributed in Wal-Mart is a big deal. A lot of women buy books there, just like you said.

Though your post makes me wonder, when does the nervousness end? LOL! As writers, are we destined to go through life desperate and nervous?

Frederick Smith Wed Aug 10, 06:39:00 PM EDT  

Cherlyn, you will be just fine when your book releases. And hey... getting picked up by Wal-Mart, even with their questionable labor practices, is great! I heard that more books are sold in Wal-Marts than some book stores... and you'll definitely reach a ton of "regular" people than the types who frequent book stores. I only wish... lol.

Congrats. I feel good things are going to happen for your book!
fs

Cherlyn Michaels Wed Aug 10, 07:01:00 PM EDT  

Hello Sandra,
Thanks for the tip. I may have to check it out after I'm done writing my second book!

Adrienne,
I wonder if this is going to happen with every release too. I'm going to have to query some seasoned authors to see if they still get nervous. I can't imagine going through this even once a year.

Hey Frederick,
Thanks for the vote of confidence. Yes, I can really use that right about now. :-)