I’ve seen authors go out to dinner, drink wine, have some decadent dessert and I have to congratulate them because I know it’s a helluva slog. But when my manuscript is ready, and I mean really ready, I don’t have time to celebrate because the game has just begun.
I have a plan, or at least a preliminary plan that I follow when I finish my rough draft, which includes multiple edits, covers, promo plan among other things. When I’m ready to push publish, that’s when the work begins. I have to work more than twice as hard to get the word out about myself and my work because I’m an independent author. Not a complaint; just a reality for me.
I have blog posts that need not just publication but redistribution. That more than likely means starting, monitoring and analyzing my paid advertising to make sure I’m reaching people who’ll help me get the word out. Any promotion I have to do, as far as giveaways, have to go off without a hitch and that means being proactive when it comes to contacting winners and making sure what gets mailed out, gets mailed out. If I have any interviews, I’ve got to make sure those happen and I’m able to handle any question that comes my way. I had a podcaster throw me a current event question and, I have to say, if I weren’t a news reader, I would’ve sounded daft.
I may have people contacting me about the story and asking questions. That’s the part I love because I can talk ad nauseum about my stories but it’s even better when someone bought the book on their own, read it, and just came to me with a question about a deeper look at a character.
This is my planned post-publish promotion that does take a bit of doing but, again, it’s a part of my effort to get the word out. Do I want to drink hard liquor during this time? Absolutely. But I’m working on getting that natural endorphin high happening without resorting to booze.
When I’ve done all that I need to do, then I may do a happy dance. By that time, it’s hit me that I actually wrote something that some people like and are buying. So, the happy dance doesn’t really come after the manuscript. It’s more like after the first decent review.