My book released yesterday— a month early. The planner that I am, I had a month of advertising and promotion and a neat little Gantt chart I created to keep me organized. I uploaded the print file to Amazon a few days ago to ensure I would have time to proof it before the December release and BAM! it went live. Zero opportunity to get my author copy. Zero opportunity to mark the crap out of the book. Zero opportunity to retract the book. (Amazon’s rules for first-time authors do not favor the author.) So after a mini-heart attack, 10 a.m. wine, and consolation from fellow authors, I’ve come to accept that it is what it is. Panic attack aside, I know that things happen for a reason.
Then a funny thing happened. The catastrophizer in me was prepared for the worst, but I sold so many books yesterday that my head is still spinning. It’s really not about sales, it never will be. It has always been and will always be about readers. The first reason for this is because, honestly, authors generally do not make a lot of money. Self-published authors, like me, have it even worse. We pay for everything: editing, formatting, design, distribution, advertising, the list goes on. We need to sell thousands of books to make a profit. While this is possible for me, I’m not relying on it. I will keep writing other books with the hopes that, eventually, I’ll make it. (Whatever it is.) The second reason is that even if we sell a lot of books, our work only lives in the minds of readers. Our words literally depend on readers. Our work cannot survive without them.
With strong sales on Day 1, my mind is now lurking in those dark places where reviews live and we’ll see if I, as a writer, survive that. Thanks to my readers all around the world. I hope that through you my words live a little longer. Keep reading and stay tuned!