Monday, October 17, 2011

If an Image is Worth a Thousand Words, Then Numbers…

     …are priceless. Have you ever been hungry, checked out a restaurant and saw only a few patrons eating? That’s when you say, “This place is kind of empty, let’s go somewhere else.” We all have done that at one point or another. Perhaps we caught the place before or after the diner rush, but the fact is we walked away. Maybe we just missed out on an amazing restaurant, filled with rich culinary creations to be discovered. A book is the same thing.

     I spent about four years writing my novel. In that time, I went through piles of books, articles, conversations, documentaries and drew from my own life experiences. Not happy with this, I went through flight training, learned to use guns and knives, and even got myself “kidnapped” to learn how to escape through a city with a team of “hunters” chasing after me. That was just research. Then about half a dozen editors ripped through my work as I went through numerous re-writes. Three of my drafts were actually three full-fleshed novels; I ditched them and started from scratch to do the best work I could offer. That was just the mechanics of writing. When I finally had my manuscript ready, I learned something quite saddening. Up to that point none of what I said above mattered.
In the journey of self-publishing, every author has to cross the ocean of marketing and promotion. Writers have to navigate through this stormy sea, desperately looking for a safe port. The majority will drift away to be claimed by those cold, merciless waters. Me, I’m just another sailor, but whatever happens I’ll be up in the top of the mast, fist clenched and howling challenges at the dark sky like Lt. Dan in “Forrest Gump.”

     The fact of the matter is numbers attract people, period. Whatever is inside the covers of your book is largely irrelevant, until someone actually purchases it and undertakes the journey you have created for them. How you come about getting those numbers without the people is a mystery every self-published author has to solve. It’s the proverbial catch 22.

     It is said that behind every success story there’s an element of luck, a beam from a distant lighthouse that will guide us to terra firma. To all of my fellow sailors braving the tides, best of luck. I hope one day we can gather around a seaside watering whole to share our maritime tales.

     Please check out my interview on Inside Scoop Live http://www.insidescooplive.com/author-pages/Mosquera-Henry_Sleepers_Run.html I apologize in advance for the terrible breathing due to my cold. I hope you enjoy it.

     Keep on running!

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