Recognizing your own flaws

Good morning!

Lots of stuff going on this week in my life. Will not, however, let it totally remove writing time from my schedule. Yes, groceries need to be bought and appointments kept. But I have one with my characters that I can’t keep pushing off until ‘later’.

One of the biggest problems authors have is not seeing their own flaws. Far too often, we think our work is perfect ‘as written’ and fight necessary changes by our editor. We believe we ‘know’ our book will be a NYT bestseller, contest winner, wooed by Hollywood within days of release.

Guess what? I’m still waiting for all of that to happen.

There’s a fine line between believing in your book (which I do) and expecting the world to recognize your genius overnight (which I don’t). Not every author can do this easily. They refuse to see the flaws in their own work, or invest in marketing, researching contests. They believe it’s all the fault of ‘someone else’ (usually their publisher) for not retiring at the beach 2 months after their book goes up for sale.

Being a published author is a job that reaches beyond writing a story. You have to be able, and willing, to control your image. Don’t let someone else do your FB posts for you from the start. George Takei can get away with it, yes. But he’s George Takei. You’re not.

In publishing, image is EVERYTHING.

If you fail to read your contract in depth and scream for special treatment because you didn’t know what you signed up for, too bad. You’re going to have a short career with traditional publishing. New authors have absolutely no right to play diva. And publishers are under no obligation to satisfy your every single whim based on what you think of your book.

In publishing, nice guys finish first. Not last. We want to deal with people who are pleasant, polite, and who are willing to work with us to put out the best story possible. Not divas.

BB

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