A Debut’s Learning List.

*  There will be interviews.  They take time.  Plan accordingly.

* There will be people who hate your book.  They will hate your book with the fury of a thousand starving honey badgers.

* Some of those people will review your book.

* It’s okay to cry about it.

* But you have to stop crying eventually.

* And look and realize that there are a lot of people who like your book, too.

* Ones who aren’t related to you even.

* Strangers.  I’m talking about strangers.  Strangers will like your words.  They will like an idea you had and put to paper over the course of months.  They will pay money for your idea, and tell their friends to read it.

* That’s AWESOME.  And humbling.

* You didn’t do everything right in your debut.  You may have even done a lot wrong.

* Listen when people assess the work critically.  Then figure out what’s worth taking with you into your next book.

* Sometimes you won’t plan for a sequel and are told you will be writing one.  Be prepared.  I wasn’t. Rewriting the book during first pass edits sure helped get me righted for book two.

* You don’t have to close every open plot door.  But you do have to close enough to satisfy.

* If you fail in this, people get really pissed.  Rightfully so.

* Sorry, folks.  See aforementioned learning thing.

* Everyone’s idea of what’s proper for children is different.  Like, really different. If you wrote scary, sexy, drugs, alcochol, or swears, be ready for people to say you’re doing something wrong.

* They’re entitled to their opinions.  So are you.

* Just don’t express your opinions like an asshat. Your readership owes you zilch.

* Horror is personal.  Some will think your story is the scariest thing ever.

* Others will call it a snorefest.

* You can only control the words.  Not their reactions.  With a genre so steeped in psychology, you cannot win them all.

* Stop trying to win them all.  Aim for some.  Or most.  But not all.

* Speaking engagements are going to happen.

* Get a haircut for said speaking engagements.  No, really.  Call tomorrow.

* Your writer friends understand every fear you have.  They are great support systems.

* Writer friends will also tell the world about your book.  Because someone did it for them.

* Your family/close friends will be REALLY proud of your accomplishment.  Like, REALLY proud.

* Your agent will be cheering for you.

* So will your editor.

* When you’re drowning in doubts, remember that your years-long journey is finally done.  You made it.  The book belongs to the readers now.

* So it’s time to let go and move on.

* Moving on.



11 thoughts on “A Debut’s Learning List.

    • The biggest surprise was the amount of time you put into interviews and promo. I didn’t count on that (and had/have a deadline for book two.) EYE OPENING.

  1. I finished your book just now and I’m obsessed. I found Jess’s connection to be so perfect as to why she’s been doing this. I can’t wait for the second book and am slightly saddened by the fact I read your book now, having to wait for the sequel of Mary.

    • Thank you so much! Book two is all about Jess’s connection and Mary’s back story, so hopefully it’s up your alley, too. 😀

      • Oh my goodness, that’s extremely exciting! Ancestry is so important to me, I don’t know why. Knowing that you are speaking to me right now, may I ask, did you develop the whole ‘summoning Mary’ and pigs blood, salt, etc. from your imagination or did you kind of read a legend and built it from there? I literally have been taking pauses to google Bloody Mary legends and everything. I’m a bit obsessed with the Paranormal.

      • I knew that salt is a universal holy ward against bad stuff as well as fire (BY FIRE BE PURGED etc, etc.) So the candle/salt part I took from what I consider relatively standard paranormal knowledge. The pig’s blood, how Mary traces her victims (scent in the glass)–that was me.

      • The latter I find very interesting a fresh take on the legend. Have you ever attempted any Bloody Mary ‘rituals’ ? I suppose one could call it that.

      • I fear I’ve never had company similar to myself to even suggest doing it. But I would most certainly love it.

  2. Pingback: October Wrap Up | toddmedicii

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