Wednesday, June 7, 2017

When it all turns to custard

It's Wednesday, I think, doesn't much matter really which day it is.
You should stop reading right now if you can't handle the truth about being a writer.

As most of you know I'm writing the 10th Byte, the last book in this series. I'm kinda looking forward to the end. I know I'll miss Ellie and the team but I won't miss staring at the series as it sits and does nothing.
(Yes, I know I'll still have to deal with the failure but at least I can move on to something else or maybe just stop.)

It's always been hard, but today it feels impossible. I'm tired of coming up against walls and of not getting anywhere. I'm tired of wearing the blame too.
It's not being shared, I'm the one wearing it.

The series isn't selling (it was once and it did well - under old Rebel back in the beginning. Killerbyte was number 1 for 10 straight weeks, at one stage the first three books were all in the top 10 for weeks on end. It was normal (and stupidly exciting) to see killerbyte, then terrorbyte, and then exacerbyte all sitting happily in positions above 7 for months.

You'd think with 8 novels out there would be sales?
You'd think that being involved with the Ngaio Marsh Awards for three years in a row would produce a little buzz and make the books more visible.
You'd think the blurbs, reviews, interviews would add up to something.
You'd think Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, blogging, About me, Author profiles, followers, interaction, freebies, competitions etc would make some kind of difference.
You'd be wrong.
Despite doing all those things, all the time, I was wrong.

Today is Wednesday.
I upset my editor yesterday but didn't intend to.
I am tired and upset and kinda lost really.
I am very tired of doing this alone and feeling like I've failed because I don't know what else I can do.
It's not like I can throw money at advertising myself (because, see above, there is none).

I get asked when the next book is coming out on a regular basis. I don't know. I have no answer. I haven't been given a release date.
To be honest today I don't care.
Book launches aren't cheap. They also take planning, energy, and enthusiasm - none of which I currently possess.
Don't feel much like celebrating the 9th addition to a failing series.
Who would?

Every now and then I get to the point where I can't take anymore and one of three things happens; I email and hope to be able to discuss the situation, I withdraw, or I start yelling.
There's no point discussing this because I don't get anywhere.
Promises are made and then forgotten.
Half-hearted attempts are made at placating the situation.
Empty words flow like wine.
I'm left feeling like an idiot for believing there would be any kind of action.

Well, it's been 8 years since killerbyte was released and almost that for terrorbyte too.
Apparently, it takes 10 years to be an overnight success.
I don't feel like I have another two years in me.


Of course, it could just be me. Feels like I just can't write well enough to be worth reading. It's a real possibility and one I've considered a lot over the last 5 years. (FYI this is not a poor little me observation this is years of this crap and of getting nowhere.)
 There has to be a reason. Seems logical that the product is falling short which means I can't write worth crap and my publisher's belief in me was/is misplaced.)

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