I want to share a frustration I have with people sometimes. People can let one obstacle beat them. I can’t go to the gym, so I can’t work out. Really? So lack of access to a gym prevents you from doing pushups or sit ups?
I don’t have any ground beef, so I’ll order out. Why? Does ground beef constitute the entirety of your food options?
That doesn’t mean that people don’t face obstacles. It doesn’t mean that those obstacles aren’t frustrating at times. However, we as human beings choose. We choose to let our circumstances defeat us, or we choose to endure our circumstances and move forward in the ways God provides.
As a nation, America is face with more restrictions on their lives that they’ve ever face. The malls are closed. There are no sports. And, for me, all the conventions I had lined up were cancelled. That’s a huge bummer!
Since conventions are my number one method of sales (and not profit), this means I’m at an extreme disadvantage. The hardest hit is that no sales means no income, which means I can’t save up money for edits on Betrayed. I can’t save for a cover. Even the money I had been budgeting is set aside because we want to be prepared for any true financial issues.
So the challenge question: Does this really mean I can’t do anything as an author? No!
You can too. First, for you hopeful authors who constantly say, “I want to write, but I just don’t have the time!” What, exactly are you spending your time on now? Maybe you’re blessed to still have some form of employment. That’s great. However, it’s not like there’s a game you “need” to catch anytime soon. It’s not like there’s a new movie you “just have” to see.
You can write that book right now.
What about people like me? Well, the first thing I’m doing is working hard on the outline to Discovered (which looks to be a big one, by far the biggest of the trilogy). The other thing I’m doing is working a bit more on marketing. I’m building more campaigns for Amazon Marketing. Even if no one is buying now (and they are, even I sold a book or two this week), when things start moving forward, I’ll have a new armada of advertisements ready to go.
I’m blessed to be able to telework during this time. I’m still working. Heck, I might be doing more work than I would be doing if the building were open. This means time is still an issue. It might still be the biggest issue. However, what time I do have to myself, I spend on some form of writing. I might also do something else, but I chip away.
In the Navy, a common phrase you’ll hear is, “I don’t care what you can’t do; tell me what you can do.”
This attitude, this frame of mind, is essential. This time in our lives is definitely a challenge. We’re all worried. We wonder if we’ll get sick. We wonder if our finances will hold up. However, if we focus on our problems, we turn a blind eye to the solutions that are out there.
The challenge I offer you is this: Whatever you do, make sure you understand you’re making a choice. Even refusing to do anything or “failing” to make a choice is still a choice.
Naturally, you have the right to choose whatever you want. My problem would be if you try to avoid or lament the consequences of that choice as an excuse for why you can’t do something.
The guy who says, “I could write that book, but I’ve been meaning to watch the entire ‘How I Met Your Mother’ series for years now,” will get no beef from me. However the guy who complains about how he never has time to finish a book while watching that show may get a different reaction from me.
So here are a few things you can do if your finances prevent you from buying a cover or paying for editing services:
Draft another book.
Make revisions on another manuscript.
Work on building your marketing plan.
Build your email list.
Send your readers an email (man I’m terrible at that).
This period of stress in our lives does create problems, but it doesn’t mean we have to give up on our goals.
I wanted to share these thoughts to motivate you to get moving in some way. This isn’t unique to writing either. Maybe spend some more quality time with your kids. Maybe turn this into an “in home” second honeymoon. Chip away on those home projects you’ve “been meaning to get around to.”
This time is stressful and challenging enough. Let’s use it to look for opportunities.
Thanks for reading,
2 thoughts on “You’re Not Stuck! COVID Delays Don’t Mean You Can’t Do Something As An Author”
What has your experience been with Amazon Advertising so far? I’m also looking into online ads of various form.
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I posted about it thus far. So far I have had sales with AMS, but my ROI is far too low. I’d love to hear about what you find. I’m still working the AMS system. I’d like to get KDP Rocket and see what that can do. I don’t know if the KDP issue is my ignorance or the system, but I had about three sales this month thanks to the system.
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