Writers of fiction want to create a world and live in it.
They live to write every detail of the world they envision knowing they will most likely edit much of the prose out. When we’re not writing we are thinking about our stories, sometimes even having conversations in our heads with our most vocal characters. If you’re a writer of fiction you understand this concept and most probably live it as well. This is the nature of the work and the reason we chose to write. We want to comply to the voices in our heads.
Then the nasty mask of marketing knocks at the door, and we spend too much time reading up on the topics that we’re told we have to master. We understand that our work needs to be seen and so reluctantly try to study how to manage our business platform and social media.
As writers we too often spend too much time on the wrong things, and we are pulled in by the lure of social media. Promising ourselves to spend fifteen minutes and then hours later the brain is fried, and we’re not in the world we so much want to write about.
Marketing is a necessary component to selling books, but the words must come first. Always.
Solution? Personally I don’t blog every week, and I often take time out from social media.
It’s not that I don’t care, quite the opposite. I do care about everyone else’s story and want them to succeed. I like to encourage other Indie writers, and try to help them along the way. I like to read other writer’s blogs, their books. I also enjoy studying Marketing and learning about formatting and other skills. There is one lesson more important than all others — take care of yourself first. We should apply this to all parts of our lives . . .
This may sound anti-helpful and against what every marketer is saying these days. We are supposed to be ‘helpful’ and give things away for ‘free’ and send out unlimited content. Great, except you need to feel human first. When we try to balance everything, multi-tasking our hearts away, we drain or creative juices. Step back, breathe deep, and take care of yourself first.
There is a reason for this to be your priority.
If you stop liking what you’re doing, then you’ll stop doing it in a creative manner. If you take on burden without first taking care of yourself, you will feel buried. Possibly this is why many writers get depressed — hell, it’s why many people get depressed. This is true for new mothers who don’t take a break, business people who never step away from their projects, and true for writers, too. So yes, help yourself first. Put yourself in the front of the line.
You are no good to others if you’re creative soul is drained.
For writers, this means we need time to write and time to ponder. Create your world, you’re the only one who can. Allow yourself the time and put off the other stuff. It will give you many rewards:
- personal emotional relief of stress,
- growth in your writing skills, and
- material that will become relevant when it is time to tell the world about your creation.
When you go back into Marketing mode you’ll have more to offer and will feel empowered. Imagine yourself a superhero writer with a book, and you are the most proficient expert on that story. No one else understands that world like you do. Tell everyone about this great work you created and let them help you as well.
This will give you strength needed to help others, and your heart will be filled with confidence that you can make a difference in their lives.