Now that I've gotten book 2, I Came in Here for a Reason, out on the streets, I'm spending a lot of time in my head wondering why I do this. So, for those of you who are contemplating writing a book, here are a bunch of questions and not many answers about why you should or shouldn't.
In a meeting this year with a new tax preparer person, I asked if I should keep going as a sole proprietor or create an LLC. I haven't made a penny in this writing endeavor because any 'profit' goes into marketing or as I like to call it, shameless begging. It wasn't cheap building this website and then paying annually to keep it. I should be writing in it every week but haven't been able to do it even every month. The accountant told me I need to decide if this book gig is a business or a hobby. A really loud voice in my head is saying, 'you are retired, why would you want to have a business?' Good question.
I learned so much after I published the first book, Did I Say That Out Loud? , through Amazon's self publishing platform. I created pages in Facebook and Instagram that brought in both friends and some weirdos who want to date me. Ummm, no. I tried ads and got some new leads but no sales. The worst was going into independent bookstores and upon learning that I had published through Amazon, said NO. The biggest competitor for local bookstores is Amazon who gets more money per book than anyone, me or the booksellers. I don't blame them and now I know. It may be a pittance to Jeff Bezos, but it's a big deal to the rest of us. Buy from independent bookstores!
Book 2 was published through a platform called IngramSpark. You set it up through gritted teeth because you are not a computer programmer or very techie and finally, the book is born. It is then available to everyone, everywhere through Bookshop.org. Or me. Now I get to decide if I want to do this as a business or a hobby.
To be honest, I don't have the time or the attention span to be a business. I'm 67 years old and have a life to live that doesn't include business plans or expensive marketing. I will sit down and figure out what that means later. Right now I continue to write stories that may or may not become a book. My third book's working title is 'It's Hard to be Me!' and I've sketched out a serious book called 'Alzheimers Sucks!'
If you want either of my books, send me a message and I will send it or them to you through PayPal or Venmo, signed with a note about how much I appreciate you supporting my hobby. If you want more than one, like you want to wow your friends, I can do that too. I can even personalize it. If you want to support your local bookstore, go in and ask them to order it. In fact, ask them to order a bunch!
That was a lot of 'ifs'. Most importantly, thank you!