Welcome to my first Tip Tuesday where I share writing and publishing tips! Recently, I’ve felt the need to want to share more about writing and indie publishing for fellow writers. I’ve published quite a few books, so I'd say I've learned a thing or two about publishing... But I also will say, that I still have a lot to learn! Any sort of publishing is a learning process. You never stop learning new things and getting better at that process the more books you publish. So, I hope that these Tuesday tips can be helpful to you as I share what I’ve learned, what I’m still learning and what I continue to learn as I write and publish.
I've realized lately that I have a lot of thoughts and things to share about self-publishing... some of it is going to sound a little discouraging or jaded, but I want you to know that none of it is meant to scare you or stop you from following your dreams to becoming an author. Everything I share is meant to help equipped you in that journey. This is something I've realized I'm really passionate about as I've looked back on my own publishing journey and wished that I had had someone to give me the blunt and sometimes brutal truth of what self-publishing looks like. I can be a pretty blunt and honest person. When it comes to writing and self-publishing, I'm going to be pretty honest about everything I've learned and am going to talk about. I hope that these Tip Tuesdays can be not only encouraging to you, but also a way for you to learn all about self publishing and writing. Everyone's journey is different. Just because my journey is one way, doesn't mean yours will be that way too. But nonetheless, I think it's still beneficial to share what I've learned and am continuing to learn through this process. So, I hope you'll come back each Tuesday and learn along with me as I talk writing and self-publishing!
I thought the best thing to start with is your why, mostly because I need a little reminder in that category too. On Sunday evening I was feeling pretty down... my depression crept up on me all of a sudden and I was starting to spiral with doubts about my writing. I realized right before I started to go downhill with all the negative thinking, that I needed to remember my why. Your why is the reason you write. Ask yourself why do I write? Not why am I writing this WIP or why am I writing right now, but why in the grand scheme of things, in the bigger picture do I write? What drives me to write?
Honestly, I think my why has changed a lot in the past few years. Before and after I published Weapon Icean my why to write was to get published and because I loved it. Last year my why to write was to make a career out of it and to make consistent money. But I've realized that my grand why that stretches through all my seasons of life is because I love it. I love to write. My why is because I can't not write. I have to write to live, to fully be alive in life. It brings me joy and is something I’m deeply passionate about. But my why is also because I love stories and I love sharing my stories. I love the thought of my stories inspiring and encouraging others as much as my favorite books have inspired and encouraged me. I don't write to publish, I don't write for money, I don't write for the applause (though all of those things are really great and are happy things that sometimes go along with writing). I write because I know I was created to write, I was created and called to create.
Your why is what is going to get you through those hard days. Your why is what gets you through the writers block and the hurtles and doubts and fears. It's one of the fundamental, foundational thoughts I think every writer should know about themselves before they even think about publishing. Publishing, whether traditional or indie, is a hard thing to do and it comes with lots of challenges and struggles and rough days. The only way to get through it and to hold strong and not give up is to hold tight to your why.
My tip for today is this: If you know your why, don't forget it. Write it down, memorize it, do whatever you have to to let it keep you going. And if you don't know your why yet, that's alright. I would encourage you to do some soul searching, if you pray then pray about it. Really dig deep and figure out why you write. Are you writing to get published, to create a career out of it, or to make some money (none of those things are bad by the way. They're absolutely valid reasons to write). Take that time to sit and really flesh it out and figure out your why. I promise you it'll be worth the time and the effort because that why is what is going to get you through years and years of your writing journey.
Why do you write? What is your reason to write?