When release… isn’t

I had hoped to blog today about the release of the sixth book in my middle-grade series. Alas, some delays in the cover art production mean it’s not going to happen. But it got me thinking.

Many people–writers and readers–think that the release day of a book is “the end.” Pop the champagne, throw the confetti and celebrate. The long wait to release is over.

But is it?

Don’t get me wrong. I think the release day of a book is A Really Big Deal and it should be celebrated. And it is “the end” – of the first (or maybe the second) part of the journey. First came writing the book. Then came getting the agent/publisher, or publishing it yourself. And now comes theย really hard part, at least it my mind.

Marketing.

See, the book is out there. Hooray! You stuck with it long enough to make it to Amazon or Barnes and Noble. Maybe your local indie store, depending on how you published. While that’s kind of a release, it just starts another chain of events. Contacting book bloggers. Getting reviews. Blog tours. Book signings. And don’t forget — you still need to write the next book.

Maybe what this really means is there’s more than one point of release. Sure, there’s A Release. And there’s a lot of focus on that. But I think writers tend to overlook, and maybe under-celebrate, the smaller points of release. Completing the first draft. Finishing your revisions. Pushing send to an agent. Signing that contract. Finding a publisher. If you self-publish, finishing the interior design. Getting your cover art.

All points of “release.”

Celebrate accordingly, writers. You’ve earned it.

Mary Sutton | @mary_sutton73

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Author: Liz Milliron

Liz Milliron has been making up stories, and creating her own endings for other people's stories, for as long as she can remember. She's worked for fifteen years in the corporate world, but finds making things up is far more satisfying than writing software manuals. A lifelong mystery fan, her short fiction has been published in online magazines Uppagus and Mysterical-e. She has also had stories included in Lucky Charms: 12 Crime Tales, Blood on the Bayou (the 2016 Bouchercon anthology), Fish Out of Water, and Mystery Most Historical. She is a past president of the Pittsburgh chapter of Sisters in Crime. Visit her online at http://lizmilliron.com, find her on Facebook at https://facebook.com/LizMilliron, or follow her on Twitter (@LizMilliron).

12 thoughts on “When release… isn’t”

  1. Thanks for sharing these details, Mary. I saw a post about the ups and downs of publication day not too long ago from mystery author Judy Penz Sheluk that also made me stop and think. It’s all particularly meaningful for me today, because today is the day I’m publishing the first three books in my mystery series. And it is neither quick and smooth nor the last step in the process!

  2. Jane, first – congratulations! Even if it’s not the end of the road, getting to the release of a book is huge. Enjoy your day and best of luck with the series. If we can help, let us know.

  3. Thanks for that, it’s good to keep it all in perspective! Such a long journey, you have to celebrate the little milestones. (Including just keeping on…) and congratulations ๐Ÿ˜Š

  4. Yes! Such a great reminder, Mary. It is indeed a long journey, and it’s good to celebrate along the way. Hope your cover art is sorted soon and your next celebration will be here!

  5. The lead up to release day and the weeks following is a very busy time for an author. This is when we get to communicate with readers who have read our work, maybe after years of writing. That’s probably one of the most exciting and stressful times. There are so many moments to celebrate both before and after a release and the trick not to let them pass by. Good luck with your cover.

  6. Mary, So true. Marketing is a reality for all writers except maybe household names like Stephen King. Sometimes you’ve got to declare a holiday. Best of luck with your cover.

  7. Thanks Cynthia, Kristina, and Theresa. It’ll happen – just not when I thought it would. S’all good. In the meantime, I’ll celebrate finishing this revision and getting back into the query trenches!

  8. My second mystery novel was released last Tuesday, the 15th. As you say, the end of one stage, the beginning of others. The marketing runs past the release, that’s for sure. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    And, of course, there’s onto the next book! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Hope all goes well with your cover art mixup. The release of my first book was set back a whole six months, but it happened in it’s time and has done well.

    Hang in there. ๐Ÿ™‚

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