A Year in Review…What I learned about books and marketing.

I’ve learned a lot about being an author. Even after three years of doing this, there is still a whole lot I didn’t know. (So, basically, this is just geared towards my author friends and those interested in what I’ve learned as an author.)

One thing is that I never expected to end up where I am currently, a published author through Booktrope/Vox Dei Publishing, and let me tell you, it’s been a fantastic journey and learning experience.

What does that mean?

It means that when I first met my team at Vox Dei, I never expected to get a fantastic book (and project) manager who would help me realize that I was doing marketing all wrong. Yikes, right? As an author, that’s something that you don’t want to hear, but it was true. I was doing everything wrong, and I apologize to my readers for that.

My blog was – well – rather boring. I thought I didn’t have time to properly blog, so I helped out a lot of other authors by copy and pasting ready to go html posts. That wasn’t engaging, and as much as I loved helping other authors, I realized that I was getting lazy in my blogging.

Am I still a bit lazy in posting? Probably, but I have been swamped here lately with work. Is it an excuse? Nah, but I’m using it anyway. 😉 Still, I’d rather not post than post something that wasn’t going to engage my audience in some way. 🙂

That’s just one example of what I’ve learned. My Twitter account and Facebook page were boring as all get out. It was basically just a bunch of “buy my book” posts. It wasn’t showcasing me as a person. It was showcasing my book, and frankly, I believe that people will rather know about me than about my books – or at the very least my platform, which is #loveyourself and #youarebeautiful. It’s something that is dear and near to everyone at the moment. It’s about loving yourself and living a happier, positive life.

And that’s another thing. My platform. I had never really thought about it until I wrote Entertaining Angels, and then I didn’t even really focus on it as much as I should have until it was publishing through Booktrope. It wasn’t until someone pointed it out to me that I needed to really decide on what I wanted my focus to be. And what was that? Loving yourself. It’s about learning to be happy with who you are as a person. It’s what I want others to think about when they see my name. “Hey. There’s that author who wants me to love myself.” And I do. I really do. I want you to look past that reflection and honestly see the person looking back and say, “Hey. I love you. No matter my “flaws”. I love you.”

I’m trying really hard not to take a tangent into my “love yourself” speech since I’m talking about being an author.

In all honesty, the point I was that in learning all of this, I had to learn how to market myself and not my books. I don’t want to be faceless anymore. I want people to know the real me, and if that sells books, then great. But if it doesn’t, it doesn’t matter. What matters is the friendships that I’m forging, and the amazing people that I meet on a daily basis. You guys are the reason why I do what I do. You’re the reason I no longer want to hide behind a book I’ve written. I want people to see me (and coming from a shy girl, this is saying a whole lot) and understanding that I’m not doing this for the fame and glory (or lack thereof at the moment). I’m doing what I do for YOU.

That probably sounds cliched and mushy, but it’s true. I write books to help others. Even though I haven’t written inspirational novels up to this point, they have always been for the simple fact of being entertaining, which is for someone else. Now, they’ve changed some, but what remains is the fact that I wrote it help someone. And now, I can do that from in front of the book and not behind it.

My year has been a great one. I’ve learned so much, and I hope to bring what I’ve learned into 2016 to make it even better.

What does it mean to be an “author”?

Seriously. Can anyone tell me, because I seem to have mixed ideas.

Okay, it may help if I start from the beginning. See, as you all know, I signed my Entertaining Angels series with Vox Dei Publishing. I’ve been working on edits and proofs these past few days as I get ready to republish Entertaining Angels come April. As I was dealing with deadlines and the like, I thought, Man, this is what it must feel like to be a real author. Did I seriously just think that? I did, and I was disgusted with myself.

Why should there be limits put on how we see ourselves as authors? If you wrote a book and published it, you’re an author. You don’t have to have a publisher, or be traditionally published, for you to be able to label yourself as an “author”. Did you write a book? Yes. Did you have your book edited? I hope so. Did you have it proofread? I really hope so. If you said, yes to all of the above, then you’re an author.

author definition
Google definition


But still, we put ourselves in boxes, much like we do everything else in our lives. We feel like we have to do things a certain way in order to be considered a “real author”. There are people who are going to disagree with me on this, and that’s okay. I just think with the way the publishing industry has changed, we should be able to change our thoughts with it.

When people ask me what it is I do, I always tell them I’m a writer, but why can’t I call myself an author? Why can’t I say “Hey, I authored that book.”? Because I’m scared of the label. I’m afraid that people won’t see me as “real” author.

writer definition
Google Definition


I’ve been writing books since before I published Piercing Through the Darkness in 2011. I guess in 2011, I’ve been “authoring” books. 😉 I’ve put my dreams to good use, and I’ve published them.

I do things to support me financially (proofreading), but being an author is more than a hobby to me. It’s something I can seriously see myself being able to do as a full-time career in the near future. It’s something I’m working towards, but it doesn’t mean that I can’t call myself an “author” now. I wrote books. I published those books, and I’m seeing it through. It’s about time that I started calling myself an author.