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Guest Blogger: Damaria Senne

Thanks for the post Damaria!  This is great information for any writer, and it’s great to hear others who have self-published and published a book say what life is like– after publication!

The Juggling Act: Researching, writing, editing, publishing and promoting books at the same time

By Damaria Senne

This post was inspired by Rebecca, in her post entitled “Writing a Book… Publishing a Different Book.”

Rebecca says: “Another point is that while you might be focused on one book, you will be taking notes and working with ideas on another. You might even finish one book ahead of the other. “ This made me think about my own writing and publishing processes and the different projects that I’m focusing on at the same time.

One of the challenges that I face as a writer who wants to publish ebooks, grow a readership base and remain visible in the eye of the reading public, is the juggling of various manuscripts at various levels of preparedness. Ideally, I wanted to publish a new book every 3 months or so, maybe even less. And to do that, I need to always have a funnel of new material being prepared for publication.

As I write this post, I have the following projects in the works:

1. Doing research for a course module for a client. The final manuscript is due in June 2012.

2. Writing a children’s book that I hope to publish sometime in July 2012. Also writing an ongoing romance novel that I hope to complete by the end of the year at the latest.

3. Editing a children’s book entitled Tselane and the giant, which I plan to release in April.

4. Preparing another children’s book for publication. Waking Up Grandma is to be released at the end of March and I’ve just approved the cover.

5. Marketing and promoting my recently published book, The Doll That Grew. The ebook was officially launched at the beginning of March 2012.

The reasons I juggle so many projects at the same time are that:

1. I want to build a funnel of ebooks so that I am constantly releasing new books. I also notice that many of the successful ebook writers publish quite often, so that their fans always have something new to read. I suspect that one of the challenges that digital publishers and authors face is that the online reading community moves very fast – if you, as an author don’t provide them with quality material very fast, they will look to other authors to provide and it’s going to be much harder to attract their attention again once they’ve moved on.

2. I want to build a decent backlist of books that potential readers can choose from. That will help build my readership base, which will in turn, help me to sell more books and make a decent living from my fiction-writing.

To be honest, juggling these projects is not easy, especially as I also have client work that needs to get done to pay the bills while I push the fiction writing/publishing end of the business. Most days I wake up in the morning and publish my blog post for the day. I have someone who helps me to promote my books, and starting with this task provides her with fresh material to post on social media sites and forums.

I then spend the rest of the morning doing client work. Once I’ve made headway on that, I may spend the afternoon implementing suggested edits for a book that’s in that stage, looking at book covers or formatting a manuscript to publish or writing guest posts to promote the books. Most of the research /writing happens near the end of the day. I know that there are people who prefer to start the day by doing some writing, but I’m not one of them. I’m mostly a procrastinator, so doing all these other tasks is my way of procrastinating so that by the time I start writing around 3pm, I’m out of excuses to procrastinate and am feeling the pressure to just write.

For the most part the scheduling works. However, I am open to shifting things around if I have a pressing deadline, or if I wake up inspired to just write. The key for me is that I just keep meeting client needs and carving out time to write and publish my own projects and hopefully in time, I will be able to afford doing less client work and more personal projects.

Again, for those like Damaria, who wish to read my book, you can get it from beyond– like Amazon.co.uk– In Search of the Lost Ones is there as well.

2 Comments

  • PJ

    It is tough paying the bills, not to mention family responsibilities, and keeping the writing flowing. I also find that I've got a number of WIPs in various stages. It may seem crazy to some people, but I find I commit more to finishing the project once I start writing. A project may stay a synopsis for years, but once that synopsis is on the screen and I push 'save' I know for sure something will come of that story. It's great hearing how other writers tackle the challenges. I enjoyed the post.

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