Here I am again at Prince Coffee shop in NE Portland, eating my chia pudding with granola and drinking my hibiscus tea. I took my book out of my bag earlier to show to another patron who was interested. She was very excited, and even took a picture of me with the book. The funny thing? She has a very unique, old name, and thought I had never heard of it before. But it turns out, I actually used her name in my book! I opened it to the correct page, showed her, and urged her to take a picture to show her friends. She did. But I doubt she’ll buy my book.
That’s how it’s been feeling lately. There was a lot of excitement about my book before it came out. Everyone was impressed by the fact that I wrote a whole book, and that I was going to share it with the world. They all wanted to know what it was about, how I was inspired, what my process was, etc. So I told them. And when the book came out, I sold many more than I expected in the first two weeks. I was so happy. I kept checking my sales, like all new authors do when their book comes out. In the meantime, I kept plugging away at social media. I just knew, just knew that it would only take one social media influencer to read my book and rave about it to their followers, and then I would sell many, many books. I have been keeping at it for months now, every since my book was in pre-sale. I was getting a lot of likes, and a lot of people telling me my book sounded great. So where did those people go?
Last month I sold 64 books from March 4-March 31. This month, I have sold 9. Yes, there is still more than a week to go, but I have gone several days in a row without a sale, and it’s bringing me down. I mean, it feels like it’s momentum, you know? If it slows down, it will stop. I mean, that’s not really the way it works, but it sure feels like it. And to top it all off, I got a nasty comment on a post on TikTok that was completely off about my work. I deleted it, unfollowed the person, and then blocked them, but I’m worried that maybe they reported me to the TikTok police, because now I’m getting hardly any views on TikTok.
Now, views are not the same as likes. Views mean that the video was put in front of someone on their phone or computer. They don’t have to push like if they don’t want to, but they see the video and are given an option to engage. As we all know, if people do not see something, they cannot like it or engage. For some reason, my posts are not being put in front of people. They have never gotten a ton of views, but now, it’s close to nothing. And my posts aren’t horrible. The views and likes I’m getting are from people who already follow me, or people who know me. So, maybe 35-50 per post for the last four posts. It’s so discouraging. I decided to do another add on Facebook to try to get the momentum going again. But strangely enough, for some reason, if you clicked on the ad, it called my cell phone instead of going to my website. There was no way to edit that, so I had to go back and delete the whole thing and start all over. Now I have it going to the site that has buttons that lead you to the online stores where my books are on sale. But so far, no sales have come from the ad. And it’s so hard to understand the stats they send you. What the hell is an “impression?” I seem to get a bunch of those. Does that mean view? I don’t know. Anyway, blah. Yeah, that’s the way I’m feeling. So much for all the excitement leading up to my book release.
I know there are things I need to do. I think one of them is to take an online class on Facebook ads so I understand them better. Maybe I can do them better and attract more people. I really have the feeling (and my brother backs me up) that if people would just read the book and pass on the word, the book would sell itself. That’s the frustrating part. I think most indie authors feel this way. I saw a TikTok video today about how making it big in the indie world is purely based on luck. Like, an influencer reads your book, and… like I said before. So maybe in addition to ads, I need to buy a luck amulet. I am also working on contacting local bookstores. Last weekend, I emailed my information to all the bookstores I could fine online in Portland. I have already heard back from one that is actually in North Carolina and politely declined, but I told them that my book would probably be enjoyed by their audience, too. No reply. I have two books in a local store because I know the owner. I don’t think either one of them has sold. Another thing I’m gonna do is lower the price of my first book when it gets near the time to release the second book, since it is a series. They can be read independently, but they are better in order. So maybe that will help. Or I could start promoting number two, and hope that people think, oh! I forgot to buy number one! I had better get to it before number two comes out! Huh. Maybe.
Okay, I know there are a lot of authors out there in blog land. If you are reading this, and you have some information for me, please share it in the comments. Please, I would love to hear from people who went through this and then came out on the other side. I want to know there is a chance to break through. I need to know that there are things I can do to make this NOT be only about luck. I want to have some control.
In the meantime, I’m just gonna plug along. I’m gonna do things I enjoy. I’m gonna write. I’m gonna read. I’m gonna try to teach my spell check that gonna is a real word so I have less red lines in my post. I’m not gonna eat ice cream because I’m cutting back on sugar. Oh. Maybe that’s my problems. Maybe instead of cutting back on sugar, I should increase my sugar. Yeah. That would make me feel better. I’m gonna increase my sugar, and go hang out with my good friends, Ben and Jerry.
My book, “May I Have Your Attention Please” can be found on my new universal link, in both paperback and eBook! Check it out! I plan to release my second book, “I Just Can’t Say I Love You,” in September 2023. Please check it out, and if you do read my book, please leave a review on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Goodreads, or whatever other platform you are using. It would mean a whole lot!
Here again are the links to my Facebook page, Debby Meltzer Quick Author, TikTok, @dbmquick and Instagram, quickdebby_author. Please follow me on these pages. And please explore my page here at debbymeltzerquickauthor.com.