I recently had a conversation with a fellow author friend, Felicia Tatum, about my utter lack of knowledge in most things marketing. That day’s ignorance revolved around my Newsletter know-how–or lack thereof. Aside from having a well-written book and a kick ass cover, a newsletter is the one thing you really should have a firm grip on if you want to be an indie author. I will admit, my understanding of newsletters is laughable. I had a string of excuses as to why I didn’t do my newsletters better: they would be more work, more time, more money, more time management and LESS time to actually write. All true things. That didn’t make it any less nessesary. Unfortunately.
In my conversation with Felicia, I joked around with her about how learning this stuff was like pulling my head out of the sand; it was so hot and bright. This world of new information was vastly disorientating and terrifying. I realized that I was quite behind the 8 ball in much of what I do marketing wise, not just newsletter-wise. My social media numbers aren’t impressive by comparison to other authors who have been in this business for as long as I have been, nor are my sales. And they never will be if I continue to stay in neutral. It’s safe here. It’s comfortable. I know how to do things here. It’s a nice little bubble.
Felicia helped me realize it’s time for me to pop that bubble, step out of my comfort zone and get out of my own way. I am my own worst enemy much of the time. Our talk helped me come to terms with the fact that I’m not so much scared of failure, as I am afraid of success. I’m afraid of believing in myself and in my abilities as a writer. My inner critic has been very loud, as of late.
So just what am I going to do about all this? Well, this summer, while I’m on vacation from my day job, I am vowing to finally READ the stack of books on marketing that have been piling up. I’m going to research articles on how to grow my numbers organically (not with gimmicks), I’m going to find a way to connect with my readers better, and I’m going to have more faith in my work and try to be less self-deprecating (those of you who know me well, know how hard a challenge this will be for me.) I am going to put value on my work and take pride in it, gosh darn it.
Therefore, I am declaring this to be the Summer of Danielle. (Not to be confused with agony that was the Summer of George…)
I’m going to take charge of my writing fate. I am going to write all the words, edit all the words, and market all the words.
Danielle Bannister, Author and squinter in the bright sun.