The most frustrating part of accomplishing anything is waiting to see a payoff. I previously wrote about how difficult having patience was.
The great thing is when things start to turn up. I published The Blood Moon in August and saw great sales that first month. By September, sales had pretty much come to an end. I saw more sales in November, this time for my holiday short story, Snow After Christmas, but those were short-lived.
I was anxious to put out my next full-length book, The Full Moon in February. By the time that came around, though, my focus had shifted from worrying about sales to writing better books and making money. This new development was two-fold:
1.) The Full Moon is one of my favorite books I’ve ever written, but by the time it came out, I was so wrapped up in the story that won’t be out until 2017. My thinking was no longer, “I hope this sells!” but had transitioned to, “This series is going to end with a bang!” I was also gathering my ideas together for the next series that wouldn’t be released until the end of 2017. If The Full Moon didn’t sell a million copies in its first month (sales estimated), it was okay because I had a whole slew of other titles coming out.
2.) In October of last year I quit my part-time job. Previously, I had a day job and a “night job” while my writing was my weekend job. I felt like I was working so many hours and still not doing enough. I wasn’t. After quitting my second job, writing became my second job. I decided to take it a step further in the direction I wanted to go and offer my formatting services to other authors. I was lucky enough that in that first month, I got a client who wanted me to do his entire backlist. He liked my work and told a friend, who is also a loyal client of mine. I don’t have a ton of clients, but the few I have are repeaters, which means I have a nice supplemental income that can fund my other publishing expenses.
I suppose you could wrap up this post by saying, “Keep on keepin’ on.” As dumb as that sounds, it’s true. You may not be the best now. You may not be getting any attention at this moment. But keep at it. You’ll become a better writer, learn more about the industry, and finally find that audience you’ve heard about. You won’t exactly be putting a down payment on a 6-bedroom estate with an ocean view, but you won’t have to worry about if your next book will sell.