#WednesdaysAreForWriters and Balancing Acts

This week, Carey Azzara, author of the #4 ranked Book Idea The Lottery Curse, shares his feelings on what is needed to make one successful: Balance.


 

What do authors need to do beside write?

Answer: Convince people to read what they’ve written! Marketing is the other job authors need to do. Are you doing it?

An often-visited topic is how to create balance in our lives. Much has been written on this and it isn’t easy to achieve. Most of us face challenges that overshadow what we’d like to be doing versus what we do. We get lost. Within the confines of being an author, balance is critically important; it’s a must-achieve imperative.. You cannot afford to get lost.

Imagine you are as talented as Mark Twain was, but no one finds your work; what then? You might achieve self-satisfaction, but not much else. So is it better to write a mediocre novel and be well read or a great novel that no knows about?

Of course, that’s a false premise, although examples of both scenarios are certainly available. What you need to do is find a balance between writing and marketing. To be good at one and not the other is to limit your horizons. The publishing industry today expects authors to pull their weight when it comes to promotion and marketing. However, you won’t get their attention or your audience’s attention if your novel, short story, poem, or other writing isn’t compelling.

Where does that leave you? It’s tough out there, as anyone who has been in the industry for more than a week can tell you. There are no silver bullets. However, pursuing an approach based on achieving balance will make a difference. Let me explain exactly what I mean when referring to balance.

There are no silver bullets. However, pursuing an approach based on achieving balance will make a difference.

Balance is largely the proportioning of your time and talents between creating products and marketing those products. As a writer, I know it’s generally more fun and rewarding to write than it is to market. However, you must do both. In fact, I’ll go a step further and say you must focus on marketing first!

Building an audience before you need one is the key. Of course, the task of building an audience never truly ends. However, it does become easier overtime. It’s like building a snowman. The small snowball you start out with takes a lot of effort to build into a larger snowball, but as it gains mass it becomes much larger for about the same effort.

Building an audience before you need one is the key. Of course, the task of building an audience never truly ends. However, it does become easier overtime.

If you have created an audience before you publish your first novel, the work to launch your literary masterpiece successfully will yield a better outcome than if you publish a book and then begin developing an audience. It’s simple mathematics.

Here’s what works for me:

Create a matrix with three columns: Daily – Weekly – Monthly. The rows are tasks. The first three rows are must do tasks, the next three rows are if time allows tasks. Then assign a time of day for each task.

If you’re like me you are more creative in the morning, do tasks like writing during those hours. Reserve the more repetitive or mundane tasks for later in the day. Maximize your time with this approach and don’t be afraid to adjust the matrix as you gain experience using it.

This won’t solve all your balancing issues, but it is a useful tool and I highly recommend it or something akin to it.

More Advice From Carey

Forget writing, start building an audience NOW! You absolutely need to build a network of people to market to, before you have something to sell them.

Marketing is equal in importance to writing if your goal is to be financially successful. Thus, writers must achieve a leave of balance between time spent on writing and time used to market what they have written.

-Carey Azzara

 

FAQ of the Day 

How do I start building my audience right away? – That link is just one of the many, many articles and resources available here at SOOP. Make sure to look around and find what works best for you. – Maggie

 

Comments

  1. Alex Gallo says:

    To Carey,

    I saw your book was published and I think that’s wonderful. That’s exactly what I’m trying to achieve at the moment, I finished my story this past weekend and I’m very proud of it. It’s a monumental work that I want people to enjoy and discuss in the years to come. If we can talk about how you managed to have your story published it would be greatly appreciated! It would be wonderful to know how you managed to accomplish such a noble undertaking.

    Sincerely,
    Alex Gallo

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