Thursday, June 26, 2014

When to let go of your book...and what that really means for a writing career.

On February 6, 2014, my second novel, THE SOUND OF LETTING GO hit the shelves. It got lovely reviews and sold better than the first novel, AUDITION. Now, on the brink of July, the book hovers above the Amazon rankings million mark. Despite great feedback from teens, librarians and adult readers, it hasn't made lists, YALSA or otherwise. My Google alerts (I know, turn them off) begin with free download links so, thanks internet. I'm doing a Goodreads giveaway to remind people I exist and have spent wasted $50 on a Goodreads ad. And I've been toying with some summer promo. But maybe it's time to let go. I've done all I can and the time has come to focus on the next manuscript. That's logical, right?

Goodreads Book Giveaway

The Sound of Letting Go by Stasia Ward Kehoe

The Sound of Letting Go

by Stasia Ward Kehoe

Giveaway ends August 09, 2014.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win
Here's the catch in terms of a baseball metaphor in honor of my 8yo son: The odds of continuing a writing career after two base hits but no home runs are worse than the odds of the Mariners winning the World Series. You can write the book of your heart. It can be fantastic and beautiful. But you're tainted goods. You've been tried in the big leagues and come up short. Publishers, like ball club managers, now weigh the odds of betting on you a third time (heck, a few seasons of experience probably HAVE made you a better writer) or signing a fresh-faced, sales-figure-unblemished rookie debut novelist too green to realize the marketing department is ignoring them. OR they could pass on you AND somebody else and sign a sexy nerd superstar like Neil Gaiman or John Green or Andrew Smith who you will never be due to your enormous knockers (your welcome, hubs!) (and yes, that is me being a touch cynical & bitter).

What to do? Give up this business? Realize it's a chew-you-up-spit-you-out endeavor and even many editors wind up bailing so writers are likely to finish as casualties? Self-pub, try to monetize your blog, write swill for hire for the insurance industry? Realize you rolled the dice, lost and it's time to leave the table? Go back to school for your teaching certificate or an MBA?  Focus of marriage, parenting, friendships, communities less focused on word counts?

I know this isn't pretty. It's not meant to be a downer, either. However, I have met many wonderful writers in this business and, as we "grow up" together, these are the endgame questions for most of us. Prescriptives? Suggestions? Writing prompt for the week? Nah. But I'll leave with this fact:

Me? I'm still writing. So my Twitter description must be right. I am SLIGHTLY CRAZY

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