What being a Writer taught me

The new writer

I read something pertaining to writers a few days back. It was a letter Oscar Wilde had written to someone asking for tips on how to become successful as a writer. Mr. Wilde told him not to depend on his art as his sole source of income and that he should keep his “day job” since one might sacrifice his everything for his art, but Art is a cruel mistress.

In fact, most of the writers I have come across lately do not depend on the sales of their books as the sole source of income. (Some authors even make more money via affiliate links and advertisements on their sites  than their books.)

The new-age, independent writer now constitutes a niche called micro-entrepreneurs as they offer products (e-books, courses, video tutorials) to services like editing, sponsored posts, reviews, etc  from their micro platforms or companies (website/blogs/social networking sites). Some writers who spend a lot of their time travelling from one city to another organizing workshops on writing and publishing. It is pretty fun in a way!

So, the thing I am trying to convey here, is that in a constantly changing environment one has to continually adapt and force him/herself to come of their comfort zones and tread new territories. Even when your priorities don’t change, the rigidity has to be looked into and dealt with.

the author-entrepreneur

I am primarily focusing on the subject of writing. Finishing a novel and presenting it to the world is not the be all end all of the writing scenario. It’s just the first step. A writer wrote in her newsletter that before she had any online presence, she did not succeed in selling any of her books for four to five years and had to be stuck with a job she did not like.

on a lighter mood- by team member Rhea
on a lighter mood- by team member Rhea

It is imperative for a writer (or anyone trying to sell a product they created; be it miracle gardening compost to music lessons)/ entrepreneur  to have an online presence for people to find, interact, like/hate, try their products and then spread the word.

The online presence is not a static web page or a dormant, disinterested website or weblog. It has to be dynamic. It has to exude positive energy and a personality in order to make people want to know what ‘you’ are all about, whether you are a vocalist of a college band or an evangelist trying to change the education scenario in your country or are simply living a sustainable life backed by your scientific and logical understanding and perspective.

I am sure you might have heard about an online brand creation and stuff earlier but my mentioning them in the post is from first hand experience.

on a lighter mood (a picture inspired by a fictional character, Loki)- by team -member Rhea
on a lighter mood (a picture inspired by a fictional character, Loki)- by team -member Rhea

When I finished my novel last June, I thought that was all there was to it. Little had I anticipated that it would be the first step of a lot of new ventures to come. I started a blog because I read it was important for an author to have one. I seldom updated it and wondered why wasn’t my debut novel a bestseller yet (It still isn’t, but that’s not the point). I decided to do a little research and found out how difficult it was for people to come across my book which was available only via Amazon.

I realized that my real work had just begun and that I was a seller trying to sell a product and the only way I could do it was to differentiate my product from thousands of similar products (e-book, not content) out there, screaming for attention from every nook and corner of the web.

Coming out of the cave

A month after the release of the book, I was offered a job as an article writer. I hadn’t written articles before and I didn’t know if I could write them. I accepted and mainly did freelance science posts ( my educational background is science) for the e-newspaper.

Then judging by the success of the news-site, I decided to dust off the cobwebs from my own site and give it a specific niche and a clear task. So in mid November, I got together a team and decided to launch the Idea Bucket.

Pretty soon, due to the encouraging response from our readers, and also wordads running advts. on the site, we knew it was time the site was our own. So the site became a .com from January this year and has grown beautifully. It’s is like an online magazine that encompasses writing, travel, personal finance, education and college-life, business and economics, science and math and medicine along with a few other categories.

And the site has also opened up other exciting opportunities (more about these in a future post) that I would not have been offered with had I assumed my task was complete with one or two books sitting in a virtual bookstore (the topmost shelf or the equally unreachable one at the bottom). So you can’t just limit yourself to your comfort zone. You’ll be missing out a hell lot of opportunities that way. The opportunities I received were not just job offers based on writing and verbal and mathematical skills but also received job applications from aspiring writers and book review requests through our ‘contact us’ form.

We are planning to launch the first volume of the Idea Bucket e-book in some time. It’s going to contain selected stuff from our already published articles on site including important insights and graphs and also have exclusive unpublished stuff as well.

a preliminary placeholder for the planned book
a preliminary placeholder for the planned book

So, stay tuned to receive your free promo copies. You can also check out our other products (e-books) by clicking here. Enjoy your Sunday.

Ananya

Founder/Editor (The Idea Bucket)

on behalf of the entire Idea Bucket Team.

You may also like:

Books

Earthbound

Manifesto

Procrastination

©The Idea Bucket, 2013

Advertisements

13 Comments

  1. Great post. I’m also writing a book and have a best friend who has self-published some books and is frustrated at the slow rate of sales. I like how you talk about not quitting your day job. I think so many people are given the wrong idea of how being a writer or artist works. You paint a very realistic picture.

    Also thanks for liking my post “Sunday Smorgasbord: Entrepreneur Games” (http://sanensatisfied.wordpress.com/2013/05/12/sunday-smorgasbord-entrepreneur-games/). I look forward to reading more on your blog 🙂

  2. I decided a couple of years ago that I will not try to make money on my art and phot because the competition is so incredibly fierce (there are so many many talented people out there). This makes me admire people that do try and succeed so much more. Wish you success!

  3. Absolutely love website layout and design :). Fun and quirky. And the content is especially potent.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog. Looking forward to learning from Idea bucket.

  4. Firstly, I want to convey my best wishes and prayers in all your future endeavors. You’ve realistically pulled out and expressed the issues which had been lingering in my mind quite sometime. I remind myself of Ken Follet, Ayn Rand and Sidney Shelton for their quick moving and audience- loving stories and their times when they first started writing.

  5. Top Cool, and very well done to you all. Myself I do prefer a hard copy rather than an e-copy, but these days more and more are buying e-books, so the best of luck with your book.

    Regards,

    Dave

  6. I like the story of how you started out and then realised about the online presence at a later stage. You’ve built up a great blog and site and team so you are truly an inspiration to those of us just starting on the same road. Great blog post – thank you!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s