Wow! What an awesome launch. I can’t thank everyone enough for all of the energy that went into supporting me and the book over the last couple of days. It’s really heartwarming to see all of the social media posts sharing the link, and to read the kind words people have put out there.
I’m not usually very good at promotional stuff. It’s hard for me to ask people to focus their attention on me, since I tend to lean toward being super self-reliant and largely independent. But the truth is that art has a hard time getting very far out into the world without the support and attention from the communities that surround it. I really couldn’t have asked for more of a receptive and uplifting response – often from folks who don’t even really care much for the genre but wanted to support my success regardless.
My mood has been flickering back and forth between excitement to share the novel with everyone, and reluctance to feel very hopeful about associating the initial burst of energy that these projects can come alive with to a realistic opportunity at relying on writing as a career. Monetarily, it can really take quite some time for authors to even see any return on their investments – let alone be capable of sustaining themselves with their writing. The industry is extremely intimidating and difficult to break into. Like most art, the people who are already successful tend to get the most continued support and attention while people struggling to be recognized fight tooth and nail for every step forward.
What I’ve seen over the past few days, though, is a real concerted community effort to uplift someone and their art that has just left me feeling extremely grateful. Regardless of how things inevitably turn out with the books success beyond the boundaries of our social network, I’m just feeling super positive that I am surrounded by a community of people who go to these lengths to support each other. We might not be able to stop the corporate machine cogs that keep the engine running for systems that propel only those who play by their rules, but we can sure as hell make some noise and drop a big rock in their pond. And who knows, it just might be big enough to get ripples into the currents they monitor and control!
Speaking more literally than figuratively, self-promotion is a serious uphill battle and it can be really hard to succeed in a world that’s more or less been designed around passing through big publishing companies as gatekeepers. I never really had illusions that I would be propelled into stardom from writing one novel. What I did wonder, is if it would feel worthwhile to continue writing if even with the kind of support you have all shown, I still couldn’t get that viral magic to break out into the world at large. The answer is yes. It’s totally worth it! I feel so fulfilled just seeing this level of participation with something I’m creating and putting out into the world, and by the encouragement you have all given me.
It’s been an awesome reminder that art is meant to fulfil you simply through the process of creating it, and more so when you release it into the world to be enjoyed by the people you love. That alone makes this worthwhile, but it’s not always so evident until you see these kinds of community responses. I might have no idea how I’m going to support myself while I do it, but I feel pretty committed to continuing to write and tell stories. That’s because for one, I feel good when I’m doing it, and two, I get to have experiences like this one when I share my work with all of you.
Thank you for being so amazing!