Author Reflection for 2018
WHY do you do this?
Why do you do THIS?
Why do YOU do this?
It’s the end of the year, and 2019 is moving quickly upon us. Soon, we’ll all be making our resolutions, goals we hope to achieve over the next 12 months. As a former Life Coach, I could bore you with the benefits of SMART goals, but I’m guessing you can find articles about those all over the place right about now. The thing about Life Coaches is they are very Solution Focused. Why rehash all the mistakes you made when you can jump straight into visualizing what success looks like and how you can go from where you are now to what success looks like for you?
For me, though, reflection is important. I like to take stock of what I’ve accomplished over the past year, but also what I didn’t. Where did I win, and where did I fail? Once I have a good foundation, I have a better idea of where to start in my goal setting process for my future endeavors.
Last year, I rebranded. Not just my website, but my book covers, my social media, and all the profiles I have floating about on this vast world wide web. Not just my author site, but the promotional website I run for other authors and romance readers. (Check out romancebooks.blog if you get a chance.)
I wrote three books last year. That was one less book tha I wrote the previous year, but it hit the goal I set for myself.
But what about the goals I didn’t hit?
I said I was going to take my 5,000 newsletter subscribers and double that to 10,000. I was on track to meet that goal when a couple things happened. In May, I was up to around 7,500 when the big GDPR law in the UK went live, and I took that opportunity to ask my subscribers to verify their subscription. Did I have to? No. However, it segued nicely into the next thing that kind of shifted my perspective.
At the end of July, I attended the RWA National Conference in Denver, and coming home from that, I had a major shift from this sort of amateur author to a more career-minded, serious author with a genuine, loyal fan base. I came home and deleted thousands of subscribers who never opened any of my emails. (I emailed everyone before I deleted them giving them an opportunity to resubscribe if they chose. Many of them did.)
So instead of doubling my subscribers, I cut them in half… and I feel good about that. Everyone on my list is there because they want to be there, and not because I might give away something for free now and then.
Yeah, I didn’t do all that great at increasing my social media presence this past year, either. What can I say? I’m an introvert at heart, but you know what? That’s okay because I did start a Romance Book Club this year, which is growing by the month. I surpassed my reading goal for the year, which I wasn’t sure I’d do there for a bit, either.
Why Do I Do This?
I do it to entertain. To give people characters to connect with. To share stories people relate to. Because at the end of the day, love and emotional connection are lacking in this world, and I’m here to put some back in.