~ Guest post by Claire C Riley
Most writers start out on this crazy train wreck of a journey with one thing in their mind: to tell a story. Okay, so maybe they have two things on their mind.
Tell a story, and have people read it.
Oh, wait. Maybe three things if they are feeling especially ambitious.
Tell a story, have people read it, and maybe, if they dare to dream…earn a living doing it.
Throughout my journey, I’ve met many different types of writers, all with different ambitions when it comes to their words/books/stories/novels whatever. Some dream big. They write a great novel and wait for it to be snapped up and make them their millions. Others write a great novel, work their socks off to get it traditionally published, and sit back and wait for their millions to roll in.
And then there are those who are more realistic about it all.
They write a great book. They want it to be read by people, and maybe they pimp it out to the big five, maybe they don’t, either way, that book gets published. And then they…write the next damn book!
Because to be a writer, that’s what it takes. Not one great book, but several. Readers don’t like investing in one book, because that’s a shoddy investment, and it’s not the book that they are investing in—it’s you, the author. They want to know that if they fall in love with your work that there is more to come. More ready for them to buy, more for them to look forward to. Just more.
I’ve met a lot of authors who are waiting.
Waiting for sales, waiting for fans, waiting for…who the hell knows what they’re waiting for, and there’s nothing wrong with that, but don’t sit up at night wondering when the big bucks are going to roll in.
As a reader I like to know that there’s more after I turn that final page—or slide the final page if I’m reading with my kindle. And I hate waiting for a year for a sequel.
So as a writer, I don’t. I try to get out several novels a year, both full length and novellas, and in between I like to write short stories in anthologies. That way I get to keep drip-feeding my readers my words, to keep them interested and hungry for more, and yes, invested in me. Because surely I owe them that much? After all, they took a punt on me by reading my book. And in return the more they read my stories, the more they talk about them, and the more word spreads, thus increasing my reach to potential new readers.
So for me being the next big thing isn’t about that traditional publishing contract, or making a million on my first book (though, of course that would have been nice.) It’s about continuously moving forwards, listening to feedback and improving with each book, making my readers happy, and maybe, just maybe, the next book will be the next big thing.
But I’m not waiting around to see, I’m too busy writing my next book.
~ Claire C Riley is the author of “Limerence,” “Odium. The Dead Saga,” “Odium Origins. A Dead Saga Novella Part One,” “Odium II The Dead Saga” “Odium Origins A Dead Saga Novella Part Two” a contributor to several zombie apocalypse anthologies, including the upcoming ‘Fading Hope’, ‘State of Horror Illinois’ and a proud contributor to the charity anthology “Let’s Scare Cancer to Death.”
Odium. The Dead Saga is a top #100 dystopian selling book on Amazon.com for 2013, ‘Indie book of the day’ winner December 2013 and ‘Indie Author Land 50 best self-published books worth reading 2013/14’
Limerence was a featured book in the ‘Guardian newspaper for best Indie novel 2013’ and is currently a finalist for the eFestival of Words ‘best novel’ category.
Odium II The Dead Saga is a #1 Best Selling British Horror book.
She can be stalked at any of the following.