It has already been six months since my books were published, for the last six months I have been really busy promoting my books and hardly had time to write, and it is time again to update on my journey so far as a new writer. Being a writer is certainly not easy, it is also very crowded and as we say here “even cats and dogs are writers”, and it is extremely hard to stand out from the big crowd. No wonder most of the people who have chosen writing as a profession are in such destitute position and I can comprehend why. Lucky for me, I don’t have to eke out a living out of it, I write it for my charity and it is nothing more than a pastime for a semi-retired guy. If I can sell a few dozens books, I should be happy and count my days as blessing from the almighty one up there.
But that is easier said than done for a self made guy like me, for good or bad I have a tendency of doing thing at my utmost best and without trying my best I won’t give thing up that easily. Just like everything in my life, if I have decided to become a writer, I want to be at least a decent one if not the best one, and I want to have a few thousands of readers of my own who would love reading my works. What’s more, I am also doing it for a good cause of sending poor children to school in Nepal, the more books I can sell the more I can send them to school, and I really want to give my best. I have started life from a very low and humble position, I have done everything and achieved many things in life by our own without any help, support or guidance from others, and this one would be no different. It is also the main reason why I have decided to go alone on my own, I am doing all of my book promotions by my own and I don’t see a reason why it cannot be done by my own. The pressure is already off my shoulders, if I cannot make it a successful one, I can at least try to make it a meaningful one, and my job is done here.
My presence on the social networking sites is already quite strong, my website is becoming quite busy now, and I already have some regular followers for my blog. I have used many ads in a regular basis, most of them don’t work except just a few, and I already have a few hundreds readers out there who have actually bought my books and read them. The reviewing and rating of my books posted by readers on Amazon and Goodreads are looking much better now, some of them are really encouraging, and with time, I hope to have many of my own readers. In addition, my contribution to the local paper is getting recognized, a substantial number of readers like my writing and my readers’ base is increasing. More noticeably, I also got to feature in The Sunday Morning post, the one and only mainstream English newspaper in Hong Kong, and it was one of the happiest moments of my life in recent days as a new writer. Slowly but firmly, I know I am gaining ground on this field of writing, it is still a very long way to go though, and I know I have to remain very firm, patient and devoted.
In the mid July, I also took part in the Hong Kong Book Fair and had some firsthand experiences on meeting directly with some readers. Being a new and self-published writer is not easy at any time, but it happened to be the most difficult one of them all, and I got to learn a lot on the field in real terms. The whole place was replete with big bookshops and publishing houses with colorful stands and many choices of books, on top of that add more gimmicky and few old tricks, and you got the much needed attention of the whole crowd. Moreover, they were seasoned veterans, they have been doing it for years and they knew how to attract peoples. In contrary, I happened to be the one and only writer with only his own books in a rather small and humdrum stand, we writers are rather shy and reserve bunch by nature, and attracting people turned out to be the hardest part of them all. Furthermore, selling English books written by a Nepali guy in a Chinese dominated society was a hard nut to crack and I really struggled. And yet, I found my own ingenious ways of inviting people towards my stand, turned my weaknesses to my strength and eventually managed to sell a few hundreds books. Most importantly of them all, I managed to find out the demography of my readers that I have not been able to find out hitherto and I returned home a happy man. Almost all of my books sold during the book fair were bought up by high and university students and I knew where to find my readers now. All in all, it wasn’t a total failure.
As I haven’t started writing again for the last six months, my 9th book is still stuck on the shelf, and I am itching to restart my writing again. So much so that I am even contemplating of hiring a new promotion representative or PR team, so, I can handover the job of promoting my books to them and I can start writing again. But it seems very hard to find the right one, all say they are experts but when it really matters, they are mostly just pretenders, and until I can find the right one, I will carry on my own. It definitely will take time but I am pretty confident and determined that I can get my goal.
My 7th and 8th books are almost done editing now, I am working on the book’s cover now, and hopefully I can publish them soon. Please mark this page. Thank you!
TIM I GURUNG/AUTHOR AT ISSLCARE – http://www.timigurung.com