Friday, November 13, 2015

Mistakes I'm planning to make

Hey there, book fans. Long time, no see. That's because I'm currently up to my eyeballs in pre-publication madness. In true author fashion, I thought I was better prepared for this.

Seriously, my promotion spreadsheets for book one have made more than one blogger drop their jaw in shock. I thought I was meticulous in my record keeping. I had lists for everything. Or so I thought. Until I started working on my blogger sheets for book two. That's when I realized just how shoddy my record keeping was.
A rare glimpse inside my computer

Here are just a few missteps I made:

1. Several bloggers have contact forms instead of email addresses on their websites. Which is fine. But once I contacted them and they agreed to review my book, I never went back to the spreadsheet and updated their contact information. So, now I have to sort through hundreds of emails to find them. Joy.

2. Overall, blogger feedback on book one was positive, but I know there were some who weren't as impressed. Do I know which bloggers those were? Nope. Because I didn't update my spreadsheets after their reviews posted. I should have, because now I'm going back to find all those all posts and figure out if any bloggers indicated they didn't want to read book two.

3. What's in a name? Tons. Just like authors have pen names, some bloggers use one name for their social media, but another for their correspondence. So even though the initial contact with them was addressed to their public blogger name, I learned their real name and used it in their emails. Did I update my information with this name? If you guessed no, you'd be right.

4. My biggest wish is that I would have added a comments section to all my data. I had a ton of really positive interactions with some fantastic bloggers, but a year later, I can't remember who went with what. Because apparently I'm getting old. I wish I had captured this so I could be more personal with bloggers this time around.

So, what have I learned from this? Other than correcting these mistakes (which are just the ones I'm aware of so far. I'm sure there will be more), I'm trying to grant myself more grace. The first time out of the gate, I was so paranoid that I would fail in the most public and humiliating way possible. I didn't know what that would look like, but it still kept me up at night. This fear drove me to try to be perfect.

This time around I know better. I know I won't be perfect. I know I made mistakes and I'm confident I'll make a ton more on this release. I can also pretty much guarantee that there will never come a day when I sit back and say "Yep, totally have this whole author thing nailed down. Flawless."

I'm going to make mistakes. Lots of them. And so are you. And you over that. And that guy who's been sitting in the corner for three months. Yep, we're all going to make mistakes. That's not going to stop me from trying to do my very best and to strive toward perfection. But knowing the mistakes are coming will hopefully let me feel less anxious when they do arrive.

Now, go make your own mistakes.

And speaking of working with bloggers, did you know you get a free copy of my eBook "DIY Blog Tour" when you sign up for my mailing list? Yep, it's chock full of mostly helpful advice from me and tips from real, live book bloggers. I'll be putting out a revised edition next year and mailing list subscribers will automatically get a new copy.

2 comments:

  1. Oh I hate going through lots of emails. Must say, tho, I'm loving your desk, madam.

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  2. I had spreadsheets galore for my first release, too. I managed to keep up and at least noted the star-number when the reviews came out. That lets me know who I ought to approach with my next book and who I shouldn't. Good luck on the new release! Wishing you much success! :)

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