Since I started asking people to email me in The Guide, I’ve received hundreds of responses from writers all over the world – all sharing the same sentiment.
“How do I make people love my work?”
“How do I market my book so people will read it?”
“I have no clue how to connect with my fan base.”
Most of us can relate to one, if not all, of these. It’s hard to throw down your words and expect others to feel what you do when reading them. Writing makes you vulnerable to other people, who may or may not like your work. And that sucks. Because rejection and fear suck.
If you want to get better, you can read all of the writing books, columns and posts in the world. You can play with your language or mimic someone else’s style. You can even pay someone to write for you.
The bottom line?
No amount of marketing or mimicking will help you connect to you fan base.
Your voice, your story, your heart are what will sell your books.
No amount of swag or Facebook ads will keep people reading if you don’t pour yourself into your work. Because, whether you like it or not, people are either going to connect to your voice or they’re not. They’ll form their own opinions.
I mean, don’t you?
I absolutely understand how easy it would be to market ourselves and our stories if we only had to throw more money at our fears. But big budgets don’t help us get what we want out of the deal.
We want people to hear us.
And being heard isn’t about speaking the loudest or longest. It’s about being genuine. It’s also really fucking hard to be genuine when you’re consumed with fear. So you can both give in to the fear and give up on your dreams, or you can work through the fear and let your true voice rise.
The first option makes it easy to go about life without ever glancing back at the fire burning inside, the passion you have for writing and the dream of finishing your manuscript. Hell, it’s where most of us stop dreaming and start living what-ifs and back-thens.
The second option makes you face everyone who isn’t going to love your work. But they aren’t the people you want reading anyway. And it humbles you enough to realize everyone doesn’t have to love what you write.
A few naysayers are better than a lifetime of regret.
The people who do love what you write? They’ll let you know. Once it happens, once you get your first email from a fan thanking you for writing what was in their soul, you’ll know the pain and fear and hard work were worth it.
But you have to use your own fucking voice to get there.
Want to learn more about writing like YOU? I’m polishing a new product that will teach you exactly that. Join our subscriber list (upper right-hand corner) to hear more about it and get a discount when it’s released. I’ll also let you know when the new cell phone app is available.