It’s been a month since Confessions of a Crummy Mummy – The Baby Years hit the shelves and since then I’ve been asked so many questions about it that I thought it was about time I wrote a blog post on the subject.
I don’t mean about the book itself (you can read all about that here if you haven’t already had the pleasure!) I mean about the process of writing a book, and all the things they don’t tell you.
They say publishing is a journey, and now that I’m a published author too I’d say the phrase is absolutely spot on.
For me that journey was a rollercoaster, from finding the time to write (easier said than done with four kids including a newborn baby and lockdown to contend with!) to imposter syndrome collywobbles to getting my head around fonts and marketing.
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If you’re thinking about writing a book too, have already started, or if you’re simply interested in the journey, here are 10 things they don’t tell you about writing a book!
10 things they don’t tell you about writing a book!
1. If you think writing a book is the hard part, think again
Don’t get me wrong, writing a book is hard – but so is everything that comes afterwards. From getting an agent to securing a publishing deal to actually getting to publication day, they say publishing is a journey for a reason! In fact, I would go as far as to say writing a book and getting it published has been one of the biggest learning curves of my life. Of course, once you’ve written your manuscript you don’t have to go it alone – there are lots of people who can hold your hand through the publishing process like professional editing services to help polish your work. All niches can be catered for including christian editors and many more.
2. Positive affirmations are great for imposter syndrome collywobbles
While I was writing and editing my manuscript I spent more time than I care to admit trying to quieten and ignore an inner voice telling me what I was doing wasn’t good/funny/clever enough. To try and combat the dreaded imposter syndrome collywobbles I stuck positive affirmations like this one around my computer – and seeing them there every day when I sat down to write really helped!
3. Writing a book is a labour of love
For me writing a book was a bit like having a fifth baby. In fact, it is my fifth baby! I spent a good nine months growing and nurturing it, I’m fiercely protective of it, and there’s nothing I won’t do to try and make it a success!
4. A manuscript is never quite finished
Or mine wasn’t quite finished, anyway. Every single time I re-read a chapter after writing it I wanted to change something, and the process could have gone on forever. It gets to a point when you just have to stop looking at it, leave it alone, and tell yourself it’s finished!
5. Proofreading can be painful
Like actually finishing your book, it gets to a point when you’re so close and familiar with your work that you’re not really seeing the words on a page anymore. Which is when proofreading it becomes painful. I found doing short bursts first thing in the morning when I was wide awake more productive than longer stints later in the day when I was already tired.
6. Choosing fonts is a bit like falling down a rabbit hole
And you can easily lose a week of your life while you’re down there. You might think having input into the fonts used in your book is a good thing, but the truth is it’s a double-edged sword. There’s just So. Much. Choice. In fact, there’s too much choice. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!
7. You’ll spend as much time marketing your book as you will writing it
The truth is marketing your book can take the same amount of time – or more – than actually writing it depending on how much time and energy you’re willing to throw at it. From devising a countdown to publication strategy and securing coverage to taking pictures, writing social media posts, and scheduling content, it’s exhausting just writing about it!
8. Books are published on Tuesdays
That’s the day, apparently, because most of the important charts, like the New York Times Best Seller list, are compiled on Tuesdays. So if you publish on a Tuesday too, that gives you a whole week of sales behind you to help get you in a chart.
9. Reviews can make you feel a little bit sick
I get butterflies in my stomach every time I get a notification that a new review has come in. Of course, we can’t all like the same thing and there are bound to be people who don’t think your book is as good as other people say it is. So it’s perfectly natural to feel a little bit sick!
10. Discounts are good
You’d think retailers discounting your book in a flash sale is a bad thing, but it’s actually really good. It means they’re promoting your book and putting it in front of people who might not otherwise see it – and when it comes to marketing that’s priceless. You never know when it’s going to happen or how long it’s going to last, but roll with it!
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Have you ever written a book before, or are you thinking about writing one? I’d love to hear about your experience!