Write. Publish. Repeat. The No-Luck-Required Guide to Publishing
In 2013, Johnny B. Truant and Sean Platt published 1.5 million words and made their full-time livings as indie authors. In Write. Publish. Repeat., they tell you exactly how they did it: how they created over 15 independent franchises across 50+ published works, how they turned their art into a logical, sustainable business, and how any independent author can do the same to build a sustainable, profitable career with their writing.
This book is not a formula with an easy path to follow. It is a guidebook that will help you build a successful indie publishing career, no matter what type of writer you are ... so long as you're the type who's willing to do the work.
Write. Publish. Repeat is the story of three authors who write together and separately for independent publication. They’ve made many mistakes, up to and including losing homes, but now make a living selling their books.
This is not a book that is going to give you a formula to follow to hit it big easily. They write and rewrite a lot. They polish and market their products and have built up a fan base. This book is a look at how they run their business in case you want to try to do the same thing.
The bottom line is that you need to write. A lot. Keep making stories for people to read. Don’t worry about marketing until you have an amazing product to market. All the marketing advice in the world won’t help sell a bad book long term.
I also appreciated that the advice in this book was purposely ethical. There was no sleazy tips to trick people into buying your book.
I would recommend this for anyone considering writing and publishing either traditionally or self-publishing.
It seems like at least once a week I read articles or tweets discussing the demise of blogging. Lately I’ve heard that:
You have to write lists because people don’t read paragraphs.
No one reads book reviews
You have to monetize your blog
You have to make every post a Pinterest-ready how to with graphics.
You need to do x, y, and z to make sure that you are growing your followers.
It is crazy making. If people are trying to follow all the advice that is out there, no wonder the average life span of a blog is about six months.
I admit there are times when I get distracted by the hype. I start looking at posts about “I made $20 gabillion this month on my blog!” and wonder what I’m doing wrong. Or I start reading about 5 Strategies to Increase Your Blog Followers and start to feel the pressure of needing to increase numbers. But then I stand back and ask myself, “Why?”
I started blogging back in 2004. I started because at the time I was married to a person who was not interested in any opinion I had. I started blogging as an outlet for my thoughts. It was an online journal. If people found it and interacted with me that was a bonus, but it wasn’t and has never been the point.
If no one ever read what you wrote, would you still write?
If you can answer yes to that question, then you will probably stick around the blogging community. If you aren’t receiving intrinsic rewards from the joy of the writing then probably any extrinsic rewards like stats or money isn’t going to be enough to keep you going.
For me blogging is not a money maker. I’ve deliberately not monetized the blog except for Amazon links. I don’t want that kind of pressure. I’m fortunate in that I’m financially secure enough to be able to pay for my blog hosting fees and some giveaways without having to make the money up on the blog. I’m not against people making money on their blogs but I find that whenever I think about it, it takes the joy out of the hobby.
I post book reviews because I want the opportunity to download the book and my thoughts about it out of my brain. I write travel posts to highlight fun places to go. I write discussion posts to vent. I write less personal posts than I used to mainly because my life is pretty drama-free at the moment (Dear Universe, that is praise and not a complaint!). I post less about quilting because I’m a slacker. I don’t want to ever think, “If I post this, will it drop my numbers?”
This blog has never been particularly popular. Maybe if I restructured it according to all the “rules” then it would be. But it wouldn’t be me. It would be me conforming to what the experts say I need to do and they aren’t the boss of me. So I’ll be over here writing about whatever comes to mind knowing that those experts will probably be gone soon and a new crop will come along with different rules that I’m going to ignore too.
A few months ago I was wandering around the web and stumbled across a call for submissions for a short story anthology about science and sexuality. My first thought was “I know about science!”
Take a moment to consider how much of a geek I must truly be.
So, anyway, I decided to try writing a short story just to see if I could do it and because while reading the synopsis of the anthology an idea popped into my head for a story. I’ve dabbed with it for the last few months. The science part was going well. I was happy with it. I was never really happy with the sex part. I thought it was sort of boring. But the deadline came so I sent it off. I figured it was a good exercise.
I found out this morning that it is going to be published in the book! I submitted it under a fake name. It is bad enough when my clients say I saw you on Jeopardy! (I was a rerun this weekend I found out) but I really don’t want to hear if they are reading my naughty story. I haven’t told the SO yet. We’ve had plumbers here all morning who took a simple repair and managed find all kinds of other problems. I haven’t quite found the right moment to sit him down and say, “So, honey, I’ve gone into porn.”
I guess this means that I won’t be running for president anytime soon. Even with a fake name these things always come out…