The first Wednesday of the month is devoted to an article about the writing life for the Insecure Writers Support Group. In also keeping with the A-Z Challenge, today’s letter is B, for Bestseller.
I recently became a bestselling author. No, I didn’t make any of the “lists.” When authors say “bestseller list,” they generally mean the New York Times and USA Today. Hitting those lists and being able to put that designation on your books is like grabbing the brass ring. It’s a great goal to reach for and it’s a mark of success that’s recognized in the writing world.
But as writers, we too often despair of making those lists, and beat ourselves up if we don’t. Goals are good, but we also need to stop and pat ourselves on the back occasionally for reaching other important milestones. For me, “bestselling” meant that in March I had my best selling month ever and reached a personal milestone of selling more books in one month than ever before. Some authors sell more than my number in 3 minutes. But where I might lament selling so “few”, I was quickly reminded by another author, also just starting out, like me, that she would KILL to sell that many.
Writers tend to be their own worst critics and we set high standards for ourselves. We need to remember to celebrate the journey as well. Celebrate all the small steps that lead to making those lists. Finishing a chapter. Finishing a book. Surviving a tough round of revisions. Publishing a book. Making sales, no matter how many.
Let’s chat: If you’re a writer, is making a bestseller list one of your goals (or have you already made it?) Do you celebrate milestones, and if so, how (mine always includes cake!)? If you’re a reader, does “bestselling author” on the cover impact what you buy? Do you check the bestseller lists for new books?
Our theme this month is favorite books and authors. Today's "B" list:
L.B. Beckett: Guild of Spies: A fantastical Victorian-feeling adventure with steampunk elements in an almost real place, in an almost real time.
Byron: star of the Cassa novels by Alex J,Cavanaugh, sci fi military space opera action!
Steve Berry: Action thrillers with a good dose of history and exotic locations, for fans of Dan Brown
Lisa Brackmann: Thrillers with wonderfully gritty realism, complex characters, and exotic locations.
Trophy image courtesy of digitalart / FreeDigitalPhotos.net