After The Contract

We are looking forward to having three guests — Shari Randall (Feb. 3), Aimee Hix (Feb. 10), and Debra Sennefelder (Feb. 24) —  this month who all have contracts for books, but their books aren’t out yet. They will be talking about their experiences leading up to their books being published. Since all of us have been in the same boat we thought it would be fun to share some of our experiences too.

Jessie: I would say to try to have as much fun with the journey as you possibly can. Releasing a first book involves so many new experiences and it can be a bit overwhelming at times. But it only happens once this way, so taking as much pleasure in it as you can is my best advice.

Sherry: After the jumping around and champagne popping ended, panic set in. What had I gotten myself in? I start envisioning empty launch parties, bad reviews, trolls, the series being dropped before it hit publication. In other words the wild imagination that makes it possible to write took a very dark turn. I took some deep breaths and started reaching out to my author friends for help and support. The Wickeds are my safety net and lifeboat. Find yours!

Barb: You will find yourself lost in a strange land. Traditional publishing is like no business you’ve ever been in. And no one will explain it to you, since most people who work in it have done so since college and to them, everything they do seems, “normal.” Don’t be afraid to ask questions, even though when you do, you’ll be able to hear the sighs of impatience on the other end of the line or e-mail. And as Sherry says, ask your writer friends.

guestblogsched

Part of Edith’s book two guest post schedule from May, 2014

Edith: All of the above! Plus, try to stay organized. I reached out ahead of time and requested guest blog posts around the time of my release, and was even invited to do a few. I felt like I was going to lose track of them all, so I created a Word table, a kind of spreadsheet. I listed each blog, the blog topic, the due date, the sent date, and the release date. It helped so much to see the schedule and know I wasn’t dropping the ball somewhere. Then for the second book I already had a list of friendly bloggers.

Julie: Great advice on this feed! I’m going to add advice that Hank Phillippi Ryan gave me–enjoy every moment of this journey. We tend to hit a goal post and immediately move it down the field. Instead stop, and say “I did this.” You will never be a first time published author again. Enjoy the journey.

Liz: Love all of this advice – especially the celebrating of your accomplishments. You’ll only have one first book, so enjoy it to the fullest. Take pride in everything you’ve done, enjoy the company of fellow writers and don’t be so focused on getting to the next place/book/success that you don’t stop and appreciate the moment.

Readers: What advice have you given people when they embark on a new journey?

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About Sherry Harris

Sherry Harris started bargain hunting in second grade at her best friend’s yard sale. She honed her bartering skills as she moved around the country while her husband served in the Air Force. Sherry uses her love of garage sales, her life as a military spouse, and her time living in Massachusetts as inspiration for the Sarah Winston Garage Sale series. Tagged for Death, first in the series, will be out in December 2014.

16 thoughts on “After The Contract

  1. I’m a list maker, so I especially like Edith’s chart suggestion. Celebrating, asking the questions, relying on writer pals to give a hand, enjoying the moment in a crazy time – great to remember. Wonderful post ladies. 🙂

  2. Just what you said: enjoy the moment. Don’t be so focused on your next stop that you forget to enjoy where you are.

    Not book published yet, but it’s true for any kind of journey I think.

  3. The publishing playing field has been changing a lot lately, so we’re all sort of feeling our way along. It does help to talk with other writers at all stages of their paths. Ask published authors what promotion strategies they’ve used that worked for them–you can’t do everything, so you have to pick what you’re most comfortable with. And don’t get so caught up in promoting and blogging and tweeting and re-designing your website and coming up with creative giveaways that you don’t leave enough time to write! That’s why you got into this in the first place, right?

  4. Thank you, Wickeds, for the wonderful friendship and advice. Publication – how can something so exciting also be so confusing and exhausting at the same time? I am going to print out this page and put it on my fridge – and stock up on champagne 😉 You all are invited to the launch party!

  5. Have fun and when it is no longer fun and becomes a chore, stop and go on to something else, a new adventure.

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