I’ve been a published romance writer for a little over a year now.
Here are things I’ve learned:
- When you’re first starting, you’ll be disregarded and ignored. I couldn’t find an editor until an indie press picked me up.
- I spent A LOT of time/researching about agent querying but the whole publishing world in general is so… messy. I queried three people. One rejected outright within a day. One said I needed to have more words (min. 70k) and I’m still waiting on the third. Why isn’t there a reverse query? Where interested writers make a profile and agents search and sign through there? Self publishing makes better sense but you’re so alone… flailing and I totally see why people stop.
- you’ll get conflicting advice and opinions on all social media channels, and it confuses decision making. The one constant though is to write. The only way to stay is to stay in. Back list.
- KU pays less than half a cent per page read incentivising you to write more, but you’re going to resist because you don’t want ‘fluff’
- this is a business – you need to be able to figure out how to separate creativity and business. Don’t forget to get receipts for tax time.
- Your writing matters. Your website matters. Your cover matters. Your editing matters but you still need to market and it gets EXHAUSTING b/c you’re already putting all into writing.
- I never realized how looked down upon Romance is until I started getting involved with writing it. It feels A LOT like how people talk about Mexicans. Disdained, thought of as less-than. Oddly though… since I’ve had many years of dealing with it being who I am, I’m a professional at adding it as fuel in the low times. Spite is a great motivator that I think many underutilize.
- Self doubt is inevitable. If you’re sensitive and can’t get past any kind of critique, this won’t be for you.
- like in the music industry… or any other artist/creative avenue… unless you catch, you’ll probably lose money. Generally $1000 to self-publish per book alone. I’ve made less than $300 in a year. But even knowing this, it’s fun while you can do it