Monday, July 9, 2012

Hoc vincam

Gentle readers, I wrote this yesterday to a friend during a low point and thought I would share it with all of you today.
I have learned something very important when doing promotions on Amazon. During the promotion period, NEVER look at your number of downloads. Especially if it's your second promotion.
I broke that rule today and am regretting it. When I released Dawnwind last month, with all the free publicity I got at sites like Books on the Knob, Flurries of Words, etc. I had over 400 downloads and cracked the Top 100 Free Sci-Fi Books.
This weekend I've had a total of 18 downloads.
Knowing this and seeing it in black-and-white are two very different things, and now I find my sails have lost all their wind. I'm drifting, not so much lost at sea as just lacking the will to tack into the wind.
This is just a momentary case of the doldrums, I am aware of that. I am aware that second promotions of books without addition promo sources tend to be flat. I am aware that not everyone lives on Twitter and Facebook, so people who might be interested in the free copy won't find out about it until after the promo ends. All of these things, I know.
I still want to shut off my computer, say "To hell with it!" and go see a movie.
But I will not. I will persevere. I will tweet the free promo every two hours. And the next time I have a free promo going, I'll remember the bloody goddamn rule and NOT go looking at my downloads!
Being an indie author isn't easy.  It isn't for the fainthearted.
I try to stay positive, to concentrate on the good things: I've made sales, I've had good reviews, the community of indie authors has been helpful and informative, my friends and family have been supportive.
But everyone has their off days.  Yesterday was one of mine.
I checked my figures at Amazon this morning and was pleased to see that Dawnwind did get downloaded more than eighteen times.  I didn't quite crack a hundred, but considering the bare bones promotions I did, I'm satisfied with the number of downloads that did happen.
Gentle reader, I hit a bump in the road. Not the first, certainly not the last.  If you decide to set out on the path of an indie author, you'll hit 'em too.  Sometimes the road will seem to be nothing but potholes.
When that happens, when you're at the end of your tether, take a break, shut your eyes, breathe and try to remember: hoc vincam.
This too, I shall overcome.

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