Why are there so many songs about rainbows
And what’s on the other side
Rainbows are visions
But only illusions
And rainbows have nothing to hide
So we’ve been told
And some choose to believe it
I know they’re wrong, wait and see
Some day we’ll find it
The rainbow connection
The lovers, the dreamers, and me
Lyrics to The Rainbow Connection by Kenny Ascher (music: Paul Williams)
Hello to all my fellow struggling authors. Social media allows us to share our visions and ideals with the rest of the world. But we live in a world where the market is glutted with stories. So? That shouldn’t bother us. First and foremost, we’re dreamers, wanting to share with others our experiences of wonder and awe at what our minds can create.
But—wait a minute—you’ve checked all the rating apps for your books (both traditionally and self published) and watched your ranking go down on all of them.
You’ve plastered the Internet with ads and blog posts and tweets with little or no response in sales.
Your writing is clear and concise, passionate and moving. Your characters are riveting and deep. You hook readers at once and keep them hanging on from chapter to chapter. Reviewers love your work. And still that little graph on your screen tracking eBook sales is going down.
Time to stop and take a huge breath, remembering why you started writing your book(s) in the first place. Was it because you like to introduce yourself as an author, or to see your name up in lights, or to create the book you’ve always wanted to read, or the money you hope to earn? Well, it may be some of those things, but I believe all us creative people have brighter goals in mind—our dreams.
A dream can be eternal—and unless you let them—something others can’t steal from you.
And dreams are contagious. If you’re truly focused on a long-term dream, others can see that in your words, body language, and actions.
Now, just a year away from the Presidential Election, look at all the candidates. It isn’t their money that speaks most to us, or their political savvy. Potential voters can sense candidates who express their dreams powerfully. They’re the ones we all seem to be flocking to.
As an author, you have an easier time of it. It’s not about increasing your reach to include a wider demographic. That wouldn’t hurt, but ultimately, you only have one reader, one voter to truly please—yourself.
By building an ideal story world, ideal characters, and ideal conflict for your internal reader, you reinforce that dream.
So when you see your author’s rank graph going down, don’t just start on a new project, read some of what you believe is your best work to reassure yourself that you are a good storyteller and a good writer—keeper of the dream.
Reread your favorite reviews. Some day, if you resonate with your words, others will too. Remember, our unique points of view, though fragile, are also rare.
Rare things take time to grow and proliferate.
It’s your dream that needs protection.
Cradling and nurturing that dream is one of the most satisfying things an author can do.