I often hear authors say, “Life doesn’t change after getting a book deal.”
I beg to disagree.
Honestly, when I used to hear writers say this I was torn between two schools of thought. 1) Thank you for saying that. Now I don’t feel like I’m missing out with my unpublished manuscript. 2) You’re telling me I have nothing to look forward to?
I’m someone who works harder when I know a reward lies ahead. Offer me a brownie if I finish cleaning the house, and I’ll dare you to find a spec of dust 20 minutes after the words leave your mouth. So when an author would say, “Nothing changes,” it was a bit disheartening. I know writing is supposed to be its own reward and all that jazz, but that’s about the same as the first time Mom doesn’t give you an allowance for doing chores because “You should want to help.”
Give me a break.
Writers want goodies to look forward to. So here’s what I’m going to tell you… Life changes. Here’s how:
1) Instead of asking people to read your book, they ask you. It’s an amazing feeling.
2) People add you on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, etc. without you adding them first.
3) Bloggers contact your publicist asking for interviews.
4) You get to say “My publicist” in conversation.
5) You get to plan a book release party with said publicist. People ask to come.
6) Big name authors offer to blurb your book before you ask.
7) You have a team of people ensuring you “are happy.” Seriously.
8)Your family and friends take you seriously (assuming you’ve told them about the publishing process. If not, they’re already impressed that you wrote a book. Promise.).
9) You get to plan a book tour and talk with other authors about what cities to hit.
10) Your editor asks you to take professional head shots because “People will want them.”
11) You are asked what you want on your book cover, and get to view mock-ups and dance with joy.
12) More people read your blog, Twitter posts, etc.
13) When you go to a conference, you get to say “My book is coming out ________.”
14) You start working with your “team” to map out a better author website and/or book website.
15) You have deadlines. They make you feel important.
16) You make money. Advances. Royalties. Both are awesome.
Please, please don’t think I’m flaunting by pointing these things out. If you knew how much I doubt my self-worth and writing capability, you’d know I’m not trying to flaunt. I’m only trying to give writers out there a reason to keep going. When I was unpublished, I hated that as soon as someone got a deal, it was like, “Hey, no biggie.” *Casual shoulder shrug*
But I feel like it IS a big deal. And to say otherwise is a slap in the face of writers everywhere trying to beat the odds.
Keep working, writers! Because life does change after you get published. And don’t be afraid to put your work out there on your own. You can easily enjoy most, if not all, of these things without an agent or publishing house. Believe in yourself and keep your eyes on that blasted brownie.
Because brownies are delicious.