Hey, I’ve seen a lot of authors jumping on the latest trend (selling direct, Patreon, Kickstarter, etc.) because they see big-name authors doing it.
I hate being the skeptic in the group, but when I see people sharing their successes, I often wonder what I’m not seeing.
Not that they are hiding things. I believe most authors are being genuine when they share. I just mean that we don’t see the ones who didn’t succeed, because those authors (the ones it didn’t work out for) don’t tend to share their failures.
And social media doesn’t put those failures in front of you, either. Reports of failures come in the comments sections, often hidden unless you click “show all comments.”
I guess failure isn’t ‘relevant,’ Facebook?
New author trends can be great
For sure when you see new trends, look into them, then add them to your list of todos. But, put most of these things in the somewhat distant future.
Why not now?
Because if it’s not the right time, you waste a lot of time and/or money.
And, more importantly, you waste energy. Mental, emotional, physical. Energy.
Finally, think of the opportunity cost, The term might sound good, but it’s actually all the other things you won’t be able to do because you’re doing something else.
Probably because you’re spending time, money, and energy on that other thing.
MOST importantly, you can give yourself an unnecessary feeling of failure, which can be hard to pull yourself up from.
Every time you fail at something, you run the risk of learning the wrong lesson
“I’m a failure.”Your subconscious
Which you’re not, of course, but your subconscious sucks. Mine, too. Solidarity.
Your subconscious, believe it or not, is trying to protect you, but it does it by brutal means. It is not kind. It’s like misguided tough love.
Didn’t you get enough of that from your parents?
So, back to my point — Stop doing hard things that might fail until you almost have to.
If it’s really hard, make it easier
This is not just writing business stuff, either. Dieting is one good non-writing example.
Every time you try and fail, it’s that much harder to try again the next time. It’s a protective mechanism so you don’t fail yet again.
And, it doesn’t matter if you can logically see that you made it too hard or it was the wrong time.
It doesn’t matter to your subconscious — Down deep, you failed, so you should not try again, because you’re only going to fail again.
With dieting (my other specialty), one key is to make it what I call ‘failproof.’ I.e., make it so easy or broken down into small steps, that you pretty much can’t fail. Build it up from there.
FOMO is not a strategy
Fear Of Missing Out is a terrible feeling that can (and probably has) led you to do things you now wish you hadn’t.
Have you started a Patreon that you later shut down because there weren’t enough patrons to justify your work?
That was (or could have been) months or years of wasted time, energy, and emotions.
And with a big feeling of failure to top it off.
Jumping on an author trend that takes time, energy, or money you can’t afford is an in-the-moment reaction that most often leads to failure, not a strategy that leads to success.
Bottom Line — Don’t do the thing until you are really, REALLY ready for everything that doing that thing involves.
Keep educating yourself, but when you learn about something new, don’t be afraid to sit on it for a while.
If you’re not ready for the next new author trend (yet), put it on your todo list, and then go do something that you KNOW you can succeed with.
- Optimize your sales pages
- Send emails
- Nurture your fans
- And continue to learn from those who are leading the charge
Just don’t always do what they share because they shared it.
New author trends have their place.
Yes, I plan to do a Kickstarter when I’m truly ready.
Yes, I set up one book to sell ‘direct.’ Just one. The one that’s worth selling ‘direct’ because it brings in business specifically by selling it ‘direct.’
It was a lot of work to set up and a lot of work to maintain. But that book, and only that book, is worth the effort.
I hate being the skeptic, but I want you to succeed, not fail.
And the best way to be the successful author you want to be is to continue to succeed over and over again.
Your subconscious remembers successes, too.
I guess it doesn’t always suck.
PS. When you’re ready to be a more productive author, here are three ways I can help you.
- Stop self-sabotaging your writing!
- Follow me on Instagram at @IndestructibleAuthor
- Get my 5 simple steps to a writing process that sticks, today.