5 things I learned in my debut author year
Updated: Jul 16
My debut novel, Cupid's Match, came out in October (Wattpad Books/Penguin Random House)! Here are 5 things I've learned about publishing during my debut year that I wish someone had told me!
1: FAILURE IS PART OF THE JOB!
As writers the ONE thing we all have in common is we'll be rejected. All the time. At every stage of our career. It’s so important to learn to pick yourself up and keep going when it happens. In this industry stubbornness is more important than talent.
2: OTHER AUTHORS AREN'T COMPETITION!
It’s easy to feel envious from time to time for what we perceive other authors as having. We’re only human. But publishing is hard for all of us. We're all peers here. We can support and boost each other, we can open doors for authors who write similar content to us (and vice versa), and we're not working in the same spaces as authors who are writing for different audiences.
3. YOU ARE A SMALL BUSINESS!
Publishing isn't made of dreams and fairy dust. It's business. And you are a business with products to sell. No-one owes you anything. But equally it’s important to understand your worth. Learn your place in the market. And ultimately choose strategies that will work for you.
4. TRADITIONAL PUBLISHING IS WILD AND UNPREDICTABLE!
Traditional Publishing somehow manages to feel both incredibly slow, and incredibly unpredictable – and there’s nothing you, as an author, can do about it! So much is out of your control; marketing, budget, book cover, release date, pricing, metadata, when announcements are made, formats, etc.
This has been one of the hardest things for me to deal with. You know that your book is more important to you than it is to anyone else (because, of course it is!), and it can be so difficult to step back and relinquish control over it. But for the sake of your well-being, you have to!
If you choose the trad publishing path, let go of what you can't control and focus on what you can! Leading to my final point. . .
5. ALWAYS BE WRITING YOUR NEXT BOOK!
This industry can feel very 'make or break' but it's not. You make a career out of writing by writing! Take the pressure off that one book. It's one product in your business. You're more than that. Keep going. Keep learning. Keep writing!
Are there any lessons you've learned in publishing? Let me know in the comments!
LAUREN PALPHREYMAN is a writer based in London. She is best known for her supernatural teen romance series, Cupid's Match, which has accumulated over 50 million hits online and was published by Wattpad Books / Penguin Random House, October 2019. Find her on Instagram @LaurenPalphreyman and on Twitter @LEPalphreyman.
Get hold of her debut, Cupid's Match, here!