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Controlling Your Destiny.

Are you waiting for a literary agent or publisher to get back to you? To tell you your work is “good enough, a perfect fit, or marketable?” If patience is a virtue, then get ready for sainthood. I guess I’m a sinner, because I couldn’t wait any longer. Do you sin?
Instead of playing the ‘waiting game’ and watching my self-confidence plummet, I chose to self-publish. I decided to do whatever it took to make my books succeed. Doing the same is something you might want to consider.
From 2002-2006, I wrote, edited, revised, proofread, cover-designed, marketed, promoted, advertised, and sold four teen/young adult novels (Just Say Mikey, Fear Ain’t All That, Don’t Be Afraid of Heaven and My Watch Doesn’t Tell Time) all over the world. I even went back to school to earn a master’s degree in marketing (for my books). Yes, this is what it takes! But, guess what? If you were to have taken the ‘holy’ route and publish with a traditional publisher via a lit. agent, you’d have to do the same amount of work. If you are not a famous name, or have never been on the bestseller’s list, traditional publishers do no more than PRINT your books…and they, along with your agent, keep a good % of YOUR money for the rest of your life.
If you are thinking of publishing/marketing your teen/young adult novels, consider some of these activities I’ve tried:
• Do as many online interviews as you can; this makes your name, your books and your website visible on search engines forever
• Visit schools; kids love to be able to meet ‘real-live’ authors…and the questions they give you will really make you think. One of my favorites: “What do you do as a writer?” Answer: “Spend 5% of my time writing, 95% marketing.”
• Book Fairs; getting your name, your books out there as an exhibitor (especially at international book fairs) is like fishing at a trout farm
• Radio Shows; if you are able to turn your fiction into a meaningful message that helps teens, use this to market your books…as well as maybe earn some good karma. I had my own radio show and, again, was rewarded by the connections I was able to make with teens
• Book Reviews; the traditional book review periodicals, for the most part, do not review self-published books. But, just like the agents and publishers, who needs ‘em. Get others to review your books and have their reviews posted online
These are just some of the things I’ve tried. If you’re experienced or just staring out, there are a million-and-one things to try. You’ll be most satisfied knowing that you took control of your own destiny, rather than waiting a year for a publisher to tell you, “Oh, I don’t think we ever received your manuscript.” Eek!!!
Good luck to you and all you do!!! One more thing, GO FOR IT!!!
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