Don’t give up—It’s easy to get discouraged while you’re writing your book and then again while you’re marketing your book, but don’t give up! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been discouraged during the writing process. I haven’t been happy with the way the story was going or the way I was developing a character or the progress I was making. I’ve been discouraged by the detractors and writer’s block. I’ve been discouraged when I felt that no one appreciates the work I do. If you are truly passionate about your writing endeavors and you believe in yourself and your talents, you have to press on. You have to fight the personal doubts and demons when you’re a writer. In case you haven’t noticed, indie authors are still generally looked down upon by the mainstream publishers and the mainstream media. They don’t really want us in the marketplace; we’re inferior to their published authors. They want the indie authors to give up; they want us to fail. So, if you give up and if you admit defeat, you give them what they want. But the naysayers don’t really matter. More importantly, if you give up, you defeat yourself. Being a successful indie author isn’t easy. It takes hard work and discipline. It may take years to build a following and to get noticed and to get traction. If you’re truly committed to it, you’re in it for the long haul. Stay the course. To quote former President Richard Nixon: “Always give your best, never get discouraged, never be petty; always remember, others may hate you, but those who hate you don’t win unless you hate them, and then you destroy yourself.”
I have fought those personal demons of doubt. I have been ready to quit on many occasions. After I could get nowhere with Murder at the Ocean Forest, I was discouraged. I didn’t have an interest for a long time in The Versailles Conspiracy. But I wasn’t going to defeat myself. I love writing. I knew it then, and I know it still today. I finished The Versailles Conspiracy and moved on to The House of Dark Shadows. It seemed like I got some personal momentum going after that and I haven’t stopped. I told myself I was going to write because I enjoyed it. Critics and naysayers be damned. I don’t care if I sell any of my books. I’m writing because I enjoy it. If I had given up over a decade ago, I wouldn’t have some of the books that I’m most proud of and I wouldn’t have further developed and honed my writing skills along the way.