Monday, January 12, 2015

Celebrate Good Times

by Shannon Baker

It’s January. The whew of the holidays. I love the whole holiday season with the planning and partying, over-eating and drinking. I spend almost a month of putting off real work while I make time for fun. Then comes January with a sense of relief and bursting energy to get back to the productive life.

My January began with a gasp at 3 A.M. I have a book launching in two months! How did it swing around so quickly when it seemed like it would never get here? I scurried to my computer and pulled up the very organized marketing plan I wrote out in October. I only have a plan because I’d just returned from a conference and a friend shamed me into getting that done.

I’m on track, more or less. I didn’t attend to the December tasks as I should have but I’m not too far behind. Here’s my confession (not that you’ve asked but it’s good for my soul): I did practically nothing for last year’s book launch. Chances are I was at a low ebb in my real life (lower than I’d admitted to myself) but I allowed the negativity to rule.

What that means is that I listened too intently to those who said, “Blog tours are a waste of time.” “You don’t sell enough books at a signing to make it worth your while.” “Don’t send postcards or bookmarks to bookstores; they only throw them away.” Basically, the message I internalized was that nothing works, so don’t bother.

While all of that might be true, there is more to consider. I felt defeated before the book even slid off the presses. The Why Bother germ infested my attitude. I probably sent a vibe out to the Universe that said, “You really shouldn’t read this book. There are so many others out there that are better. You won’t like this.”

I didn’t celebrate that book and whether it made any difference in sales, it made gigantic impact on me. I felt like the Eeyore of authors.

I’m not going to let that happen this time. It doesn’t matter if my efforts don’t show up in sales. I’m going to blog bounce and set up book signings. Hit up a few book clubs, send out scores of press releases. I’m going to stick to my plan. Because I believe.

I believe that putting positive energy into this venture will yield results. I’m already feeling good about the launch, proud about the new book and ready to show it to the world. It’s a good story and I liked it when I told it to myself so why shouldn’t other people like it, too?  

The real reason I’m putting an effort into the launch is for myself. I want to celebrate the accomplishment. Somewhere along the last year, my perspective changed. I’m not marketing as a Sisyphusian chore that I’m supposed to do, toiling in the gray gloom of uselessness. I’m having a party and I get to tell people about something I find interesting.

So guys, guess what? I’ve got a book coming out in two months! It’s going to be great!

What are you celebrating?


Tracy Weber said...

I'm celebrating your celebration! So well done, my friend. This is a tough business, and you're rocking it!

James R. Scarantino said...

Thanks for this. I'm a new author, looking at accepting an offer for my debut novel, wondering what lies ahead...both out there, in the world, and inside my head and heart. This was great inspiration, as well as informative. Good luck with your book. I'll put you on my reading list.