Sunday, November 6, 2016

Planning The Beginning

As I've said previously, my first novel, Akeldama, comes out next May 18th.  Some have asked why I'm waiting so long since the novel is ready.  Couldn't I just go ahead and upload it to Amazon now and be done with it?

There are a myriad of reasons I've waited, but the biggest one is that this isn't some lark - it's a business.  Were releasing this novel merely a one time deal, or if this was only going to be a hobby, then I could better understand just putting it out there.  However, I intend this to grow into a full time profession.  So, some ask, why then the long lead time?  Does it really take so long?

The short answer is - of course not.  On the other hand, I'm otherwise still employed, have been out of the country, and I have been unable to devote my full attention to this venture.  Now that I'm starting this in earnest, there are lots of things to consider - tax IDs, creating an S-Corporation, setting up an imprint, setting up my business account, etc.  These things don't happen overnight.

Moreover, planning these things out also doesn't happen overnight.  If you're a traditionally published author, with an agent and a publishing house, they aren't the kinds of things you give a lot of thought to.  At the same time, traditionally published authors should also not rush headlong into this process, since they have to consider querying, who to query, how to write a synopsis, and so on.  Each route takes time; it's simply a matter of what you spend that time on.

That's the whole point to me - take the time to plan.  Lay out all of your options and plot the best path forward.  Sure, you can go out and do stuff in about a week, but you'll put forth a shitty product.  The layers involved in this are so complex that it takes time to understand them all and how they interact.  There are other considerations too, like tax seasons.  I know that half the audience's eyes just glazed over, but what sense does it make to incorporate and prep everything on December 5th?  That creates a tax burden for that year for hardly any season.  Why not wait until January to do what you need to so that you have the luxury of work behind you?  Yes, maybe that's lazy, but I want to have something tangible before combing through IRS regulations on April 15th.  And sure, maybe you got started at that point because you had some great insight into the market(maybe 10,000 people said they wanted your book by Christmas), but that's rare.  Most book purchases take place in Spring or early Fall(taking advantage of either upcoming vacations or the start of school).  If you release when the market doesn't care, you'll sabotage yourself from the get-go.

All I'm saying is to be patient if you can afford to be.  Building a successful business takes meticulous planning, and it still might fail.  Don't increase your chances of failure by rushing into stuff before you're ready.  Remember, writing your novel is the easy part.  Making it a success is where most folks fail.


  1. Well said. But being patient is haaaarrrrddddd.... I whined.