Thursday, October 23, 2008

Getting your book isn't the end of the process, its just the beginning

I love writing - I think you've all figured that out about me by now. I'm actually suffering withdrawal symptoms a bit at the moment as there have been so many other things on that I have not had time or sufficient brain juices flowing to make much progress on my WIP. I've been focusing more on PR and marketing of me and my books, visiting schools and libraries and trying to figure out how to make this intermawebby thing work harder for me to the same end. And trying to earn a few pennies in there as well through non-book related activities. But I think there are even more things I should be doing. Having my stories published has been one of the highlights of my writing experience (seeing someone enjoy one of my stories is the other major highlight). But boy is it a huge can of worms I didn't realise I was opening when I got those fateful words - can we please publish... Because its not just about making the story into a book and getting the book and saying YAY. Its also realising 'I want people to buy my book' and 'I want people to like my book' or best of all 'love it'. There are book launches and especially with children's books there are school visits and library visits and giving talks. And then people say 'its a really good idea to have a web presence' and a blog may not be enough, I might need a website too and then I need to make sure I'm connecting up to the audience who might be interested in me, but i should also follow the traditional route and do a press release and have some info on me going out to print media and maybe the radio, and lets face it getting into the editorial section is a major plus and ...whoops i think my head just fell off. I'm only one person and I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed by all of these additional things I need to do to help my books. I feel like I need to be a company with departments to successfully achieve all of these things. Truth is I am the antithesis of a super woman. Most days I struggle just to write and do all the domestic chores that need doing. I'm reading the tips on what kinds of marketing things i should be doing but does anyone have any tips on how to actually fit all these things in (especially when I have to learn how to do them in the first place) without having a 'nervy B'?

Next week my SO has an operation on his shoulder (old golfing war wound) and will be in a sling for a month. This means no driving for a month. For those of you who have met me in the flesh you may be aware of my driving phobia. I am pretty handy at tootling round the local streets. Even when the occasion merits I tootle a little further. But I am petrified of driving on the motorway and the harbour bridge. I've seen what crazy stunts some drivers do (hell I've seen myself do some dumb things) and New Zealand drivers rightly have a reputation for being discourteous (aka down right rude) and fairly cranky if they think you've diminished their driving experience in some way. So its not just an irrational fear - there are good reasons i get sweaty and shakey at the thought of driving on the motorway. I don't even like being in the car with someone else driving on the motorway. So I'm feeling a little stressed about having to pick up some additional driving duties during the 'incapacitation'. It doesn't help reading blogs about people who don't want to drive, who just don't. They don't apologise for their fear. They just make a choice and don't drive. I should point out that the choice not to drive is often accompanied by the choice to not produce offspring. This is a good call. If you have small fry the need to be able to drive increases exponentially. In fact it is the driving of my children to after school activities (when the motorway is a necessary evil) that is stressing me the most. I know I have some white knuckle drives coming up but I am really looking forward to just tootling again in the future.


THE WCBA said...

Sympathies! Going backwards off the M5 in 2001 had me pretty unnerved- but I am writing the experience into a chic lit novel. Lying prone strapped to a spine board has to be good fodder for something.
Just about lying prone now with wine...thats how I manage superwomaning.
Oh here you go- one from the archives:

Try Hard

I try, you know, to decorate,
And have a tasteful home,
I've even lime-washed and distressed,
My favorite garden gnome.

I try, you know, to sew stuff;
Be a perfect ballet mother,
But when I make a leotard,
It looks like a loose cover.

I try you know, to look good
From my head down to my toes,
What a shame, my dress gets tucked,
Inside my pantyhose.

I try you know, to work out,
Spending hours at the gym,
But I really just like lounging,
With a novel and a gin.

I try you know, to tidy
And be a great housewife;
One day I'll clean the oven,
When I haven't got a life.

I try you know- Oh bollocks!
I'm trying hard to do without
A Superwoman syndrome,
That wears the mortal woman out.

xxx Fifi

PS I didn't get the Foxton residency- did you?

Melinda Szymanik said...

Yes lying prone due to wine wins hands down over lying prone due to injury (although one can lead to the other). Its rather lovely to find a poem in the comments - thank you - that super woman lady has a lot to answer for!!!!

I didn't get the Foxton. Now I'm waiting for my 'no' from Creative NZ


(my word verification sounds like the name for bad foot odour - ciatosi)

Fifi Colston said...

Didn't apply to CNZ this time- I found the rejection unbearable the last 7 times! I am surprisingly relaxed and at peace with the world now...except that we've applied for the conference and I'm crossing my fingers they'll stump up for us ALL on that one. So there is some degree of finger biting going on on behalf of kids bookers everywhere.
My word verification sounds like the noise a baby terradactyl would make- crotyl

maureen said...

loved your post...
as usual I was going...
same same same.....
I'm living in the car with children's activities... what we do for the children...
would rather lie down with novel and gin....
cheers (hic)