Hey. Woman of immense worth. This one’s for you.

Honey, stop comparing yourself to her. Stop looking at her and thinking about everything that’s ‘right’ with her and everything that’s ‘wrong’ with you. You are of immense worth in and of yourself. You, just as you are, right now. Your beauty is beyond compare, so hold your head high and walk tall. Chances are pretty good that she’s comparing herself to you. And if she is, she needs to hear you tell her that she is enough, too.

Indie Author Freaks Out: Details at 11

In her Twenty Things NOT To Say To A Writer: A Handy Safety Guide, Laura Resnick tells us that a career of writing books “…is insanely competitive, disastrously unstable, and skull-crushingly difficult to do.”

My experience as a published author now encompasses exactly 13 days. So far, I have learned three very important things about this skull-crushingly difficult business, and I am going to tell you about them now.

3 Newbie Lessons from Getting Published

1. When promoting your book, start off strong — but pace yourself.
Thus far, Twitter, Kindleboards, Facebook, and blogging have been my greatest allies in promoting Colors of Deception. I’m tweeting and posting — and to my delight, followers and friends are retweeting and reposting. (Thanks, everybody! You guys are cramazing.)

The result of all this networking isn’t just book sales, though — it’s connections all over the place. It’s encouragements coming in from all sides. And it’s tweets and messages that deserve a personal response.

Right now, I’m happily responding, and I’m making the social media work for me. But I’m also thinking ahead to when I start my next writing project — soon. And when I start it, the networking must take a backseat. I might even have to lock the networking in the trunk.

Because if I’m networking all the time, I’m not writing. If I’m not writing, I’m not me. If I’m not writing, there won’t be any books to network about. So as I’m thinking ahead to the next big project, I’m reminding myself that when it comes to book/blog promotion,

I am a writer first and a business second.

Maybe third.

2. Not everyone will support you. And that’s okay.
I wrote a little about this last week, when I mentioned my tweet about others’ silence. Sometimes, that silence is a worse rejection than an in-your-face confrontation. When you publish a book, you want every single person you know to shower you with congrats. Not that you want heaps and oodles of attention*, but an acknowledgement would be nice, right?

Well, not everyone is going to acknowledge your accomplishment — and that’s okay. Do you acknowledge every single accomplishment of every single person you know? If the answer to that is yes, you can color, paint, and doodle me impressed. Me, I have to answer that question with no. And the reasons behind my negation are legion and would make a whole series of blog posts.

But it all boils down to this: Frankly, I can’t keep up with everybody.

And I can’t expect everybody to keep up with me, either. ; )

Here’s the deal, though: We don’t need everyone in our lives to acknowledge our authorial accomplishments. I think about it this way: When I lose tweetlings (aka followers) on Twitter, it doesn’t mean I’ve failed; it means I’m refining my audience. If people stop following me, it means they weren’t my audience in the first place.

The same applies to my books: If someone doesn’t acknowledge my publishing success, it just means that person isn’t my audience. Maybe they don’t read novels. Maybe they don’t read my genre.

Whatever the reason for their silence, it’s not the end of my world. It’s just the refining of my audience.

3. Book Launch Parties freak out my subconscious.
The Book Launch Party is tonight, and I’ll be posting about it on Thursday. Vintage timeless Coffee is hosting the shebang, and I know it’s going to be fantastic.

That knowledge, however, didn’t prevent the weird dream I had two nights ago of driving my dad to the book launch and heading the wrong way up multiple one-way streets. I tried making a U-turn in front of a lady in a red Dodge Charger, and she almost took the front of my car off.

Fortunately, I understand what’s going on here. I’m an introvert. There will be people at this party whom I don’t know. I’m an introvert. They’re going to want me to say something in front of everyone. I’m an introvert. There’s a reason I chose writing over a career in public speaking. ; )

In spite of my subconscious’s quiet little freak-out, here’s what I know:

I’m surrounded by a kaboodle of supportive friends and family.

Nothing bad is going to happen.

I’m going to have an incredible time.

___________________________
Are you an indie or self-published author?

Do you find this business “insanely competitive, disastrously unstable, and skull-crushingly difficult?” Why or why not?

What are your words of wisdom for the indies and self-pubbed?

What are your sub-/conscious fears about publishing, and how do you deal with them?

___________________________

* Let’s admit it: We writers do like the attention. 😉

I Wrote This Because You Are Beautiful

Beauty and Wonder

I want to tell you something important.

Finding the right words won’t be easy. I always have trouble communicating what’s most important to me. But I’ll do my best.

I want to tell you that you’re amazing.

You’ve been through a lot. You’ve come through what the world would define as hell. And yet, you’re still here.

Not only are you still here, but you’ve gone beyond simple existence, and you’re living. You’re interweaving your life with others’. Do you realize how much courage that takes? It’s simple enough to do — but it would’ve been far simpler to retreat into mere existence and shun every opportunity of connection.

You have a tremendous amount of courage.

You also have a raw passion hidden somewhere deep inside you. Why have you hidden it? I can’t answer that. But the moment I asked the “why,” you felt at least the hint of an answer resonating in your spirit. I can’t answer your “why” — but you can.

You have this fiery energy built up inside of you, just waiting for you to release it. The prospect frightens you, because you already suspect just how much passionate energy is actually there. And you don’t know what it would do if you let it out.

But you, love, were created for passion. You were created with talent, imbued with skill, and gifted with every resource you need to channel and use that passionate energy. You were created to be something that no other person in this world is, has been, or ever will be.

You are talented. You are skilled. You are gifted.

You are beautiful.

You are valuable. You are worth every bit of talent, skill, and beauty that has been poured into you. You are worth taking risks for. You are worth sacrificing for.

You deserve not to stand in your own way.

You are worthy of eliminating the habits that are holding you back. I don’t know what those habits are — but when you read the phrase “habits that are holding you back,” something resonated in your spirit again. You know which of your habits are dampening your passion.

You deserve to ignore the people in your life who belittle you. You deserve to ignore the people in your life who refuse to encourage you. You deserve to ignore the people in your life who tell you — through their words, attitudes, or actions — that you can’t possibly achieve anything beyond the average. Or even the mediocre.

You deserve to treat yourself better than those people treat you. You deserve to treat yourself better than those people treat themselves.

You deserve to surround yourself with people who will not only support you, but also lift you up.

You deserve not to be subject to fear. And the wonderful news is that you aren’t subject to fear.

You do not have to let fear rule over you. You do not have to let fear rule you.

You don’t have to be afraid of what might happen if you released your pent-up passionate energy. You don’t have to be afraid of following the path upon which your natural talents lead you.

You don’t have to be afraid of saying no to the people who try to tear you down. You don’t have to be afraid of saying yes to the people who want to build you up.

You don’t have to be afraid.

Don’t be afraid.

You are beautiful, and you are possessed of tremendous courage.

You are beautiful, and you are possessed of tremendous courage.

You are beautiful, and you are possessed of tremendous courage.

You are worthy of honoring your gifts.

You are worthy of finding your purpose and following it with that pent-up, consuming passion.

You were created to pursue that passionate purpose with all the talents, gifts, and resources at your disposal.

You are meant for wonder.

Go out and do what only you were made to do.