Seven Days Until Publication Date!
I’m in limbo. That no woman’s land between not quite officially being a published author just yet… and knowing that is exactly what is about to happen in one weeks’ time. Seven days, one hundred and sixty eight hours, ten thousand and eighty minutes!
How to fill them?
In the run up to October 3rd, ‘Oh! What a Pavlova”s launch date, I’m turning into my husband, who habitually paces about the house before a holiday or a business trip or a visit from his parents. I just can’t stick or settle to do anything!
I attempted to bake Millionaire Shortbread… but my caramel stubbornly refused to set and now the ants are having a field day in the bin (we live in Spain… it’s still hot). I turned my attention back to the planning of my three hour online launch party… but ended up staring vacantly at the laptop screen. I swept the floor like a good Stepford Wife (let me tell you, if you ever see me with a cleaning implement in my hand, know this is simply not normal… unless we are about to host a dinner party), yet still I was marching backwards and forwards, all over the house, restless with an indescribable hybrid-esque feeling of wanderlust meets wanting to sleep for a week. Okay then: let’s get ahead of the game and make some fun memes on Canva for novel number two… February 13th will be here before we know it. But I couldn’t quite find the right images. Alright: novel number three, let’s GO. But the characters refused to be stirred from their hangover-induced sleep.
Which is when it dawned on me. I have a self-marketing hangover. That’s what this is all about.
I have spent an entire summer creating memes on Canva, giving interviews (radio and written), contacting newspapers and magazines, penning articles, navigating Twitter, uploading inspirational foodie pics to Instagram, making new author friends, giving Facebook Lives (nervously clutching at my G&T), finding my ‘tribe’ all over social media, admiring selfies of the paperback version of my book flying in from early readers from all corners of the world, playing Book Fairy, hosting author interviews, joining Facebook writing groups, getting to grips with Goodreads, attending photo shoots and hovering on that very fine and treacherous line between dropping a subtle hint to those very same early readers… and begging, for their Amazon reviews.
And what I have come to realise is this: in a 21st century publishing world that is ever-reliant on the author putting on their Shameless Plug Hat and getting themselves out there, it IS okay to take a break, meditate, play some music, head to the beach, and relax with a queue of cocktails.
Which is exactly what I plan to do this week.
The work has been done, the scene has been set, the ‘extra, extra, read all about its’ have been shouted from the rooftops and the momentum will hopefully carry ‘Pavlova’ forward in the right direction. In short, it’s time to chill the hell out, to trust that the universe will deliver this book into the hands of all those who will enjoy her the most, to those who will take the positives out of her message, and ultimately, want to read more from this very humble debut author.
One thing is for sure though, when I look back over all I have squeezed into the past few months in terms of PR, I am SO glad I listened to the very sound advice of my publishers and prepped well in advance.
I mean, can you imagine what kind of a zombie-like state I’d be in if I’d started all of this the week before pub date?!