I’m an indecisive feather in the wind, and I need to stop it

I hold tight to many of my convictions. While I consider myself an open minded person who’s willing to consider others ideas, I am pretty much set on the big core values of life.

What I lack is any conviction when it comes to running my little business over here. I, sadly, am a fan of the trend.

I read a lot of business blogs, and I get some great ideas from them. And when you read a lot of business blogs, you notice patterns. Months ago, the trend was mailing lists, and newsletters. I didn’t have a newsletter at the time, and I didn’t really want one. With a few exceptions, newsletters are the things I get because I wanted some nifty thing that they were offering with the sign up. One exception I have to mention is Ninja Notes, from ByRegina. I love that. She puts a lot of effort into the posts she sends out in those, and I enjoy them.

I didn’t want to do that. I would rather put my best material here, where everyone will see it. I don’t run the same kind of business as these women I read about, for the most part.

But everyone was saying that I should totally do this.

And so I made a newsletter. About seven people subscribed to it. I wrote good content for it, and even included a market list for it, to give it more value. And I hated writing it, every month. It took time away from making content for PBW, and all of my other writing projects. It wasn’t fun for me. I was constantly unsure how it should be ‘different’ so I wasn’t just rehashing the content here. I hated promoting it, too.

But everyone was saying that I should totally do this.

Then I found this new blog, called The Middle Finger Project. And I read this post, about why you shouldn’t just do a newsletter because everyone else does a newsletter.

And that’s when I started feeling like a freaking idiot.

So I told you all that to tell you this. I was reading a different blog, and came across a piece about author’s websites. I was in the middle of the PBW revision at the time, so I was on that.

I came to realize, though, that I didn’t agree with any of the things this blogger was saying. They suggested that while it wasn’t terrible to post short stories or even book chapters on your website, what was the point? They also suggested that your website should be your calling card, a place to get information, not your full work.

But why should anyone buy my books if they have no idea if they like my stories? I buy books often because I love the creator’s website. I love the free stories and art they gave me on their site.

This advice was not for me. And yet, it made me question my whole business model!

Another piece of advice I got recently was to publish short stories in literary magazines to help promote your book. That advice was either given by someone who has never tried to publish anything, or who lives in a magical world where editors aren’t buried under manuscripts, horribly suggestive, and often have months long waiting times.

Now, I’m always open to new things, new experiments, and new ways to promote my writing. My word this year is Wonder, as in, ‘I wonder what would happen if I did this thing I’ve never tried.’ So I’ll continue to read my blogs, and try new things. But from now on, whether I stick with a thing or not is going to depend more on my personal results than what anyone else thinks my results should be.

How about you?

 

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