I never thought it would be a problem. That’s right. I assumed I would courageously run to the roar and not give it a second thought. After all, I’m doing what I’m supposed to be doing, right? And if I’m doing what I’m supposed to be doing, it all ought to be smooth sailing, right?
As my husband says, “There’s always something.”
Ain’t it the truth? I suppose I ought to know better by now, but the little voice inside who won’t go away repeatedly shouts, “This will be great! A piece of cake! At least it should be. Because if it’s not, then…well, you know what that means.”
And I say to myself, “No. I don’t know what that means. What does that mean?”
“It means you’re not perfect yet.”
Oh dreaded truth.
I have known for about a week now that it’s time to get back to blogging. The first draft of “Rescuing Christina” is finished and in the critically evaluative hands of an editor. I wait, but not in a tedious way of waiting like when you have to sit in the doctor’s waiting room anxious to hear a voice call your name so that you can get on with your day.
I’ve been busy, trying to make the most of the waiting by building what is understood as the indie author’s marketing machine. There are lots of moving parts; parts that cost money as I’m finding out. What am I talking about? Websites, domain names, email providers, lead pages, paid ads, and book cover designs…to name a few.
The most important thing an indie author must have is readers. More specifically, readers on an email list. An email list allows an author to communicate with her readers about all kinds of things they may be interested and even get them involved in the whole book launch process. As my new mentor in the indie author world says, “You’re readers are your friends. You need to treat them as such.”
Oh yeah, I have friends.
That I hang out with.
Once a quarter.
I just need to expand the number from five to 90,000, just like my new mentor has in the past four years. And then I’ll be as successful as he is.
So my new website is up, my lead pages are triggering when they’re supposed to, I’m giving my books away free in trade for email addresses, and I’m running a couple of test ads. Just as an aside, I’m starting to realize that most people want to read thrillers, sci-fi fantasy, and romance novels. I’m guessing they’re looking to escape. I fear my books are exactly the opposite of what most people want. My books deal with reality; the very reality most people are running from when they become engrossed in another historical romance. But that’s just an aside. I could be writing great novels and still have my problem.
I’m afraid to connect with my readers.
There I said it. Or wrote it. It is the “always something…” about which my husband frequently refers. You may ask “why?” I suppose that’s an appropriate question, but you already know the answer, so why do you torment me like this? Sorry, not you.
With no excuses offered, and I have many, it is my fundamental fear of rejection; the fear that has driven me my entire life. It’s complicated. My primary fear of rejection really has nothing to do with this reader connection issue because I have, like many of us, been rejected countless times, sometimes leaving me with cuts and bruises on the side of the road. I’ve survived and as my sister so naively believes, I’m “indestructible.” To that I say, “Many have tried” with a little tinge of defiance in my tone, all the while of the moment thinking to myself, and I don’t understand why…I’m such a sweetheart. I really am. Just don’t mess with me, and eventually you’ll see.
So my fears aren’t rooted in wondering when the next rejection will come. That’s not it at all.
My fears are rooted in whether I am capable of treating my readers well…to treat them like friends, and trust them as the perfect strangers they are with the things that are closest to my tender heart.
So if you’re reading this, your one of my readers.
Might you give me a chance? Would you help me get past this little bump in the road?
I mean, I could give you free books too if you want, but really, I’d just like to keep you up to date on what’s happening with “Rescuing Christina”, my upcoming nonfiction book about my daughter. It’s the story of a little girl conceived in violence, carried in secret, and born missing half her brain…who rescued me from myself.
So, how about it? Here’s a link you can click to get on the mailing list without free books.
And here’s a link you can click to get on the mailing list AND get free books.
It makes no never mind to me which one you pick. I’ll still do my best to treat you like a good friend. Trust me, if God continues to have His way, I’ll get better at this friend thing with time.