This will take some getting used to. Or: Exposure is not easy

Sixteen weeks after the second day of the new year.

When you put a book out there for everyone to see, you put yourself out there, too. Toward the launch of Author’s current book for you, Sister has arranged for it to be featured in blogs and podcasts, and she has asked Author to take the time to answer all kinds of written questions and prepare for the prospect of live ones. Author had a bit of that when The First was published, together with Sister, but just a bit, because back then Author and Sister had just begun, all they had was the book and they were just beginning to learn the self-publishing world. But now things are different. Since the launch of The First, Sister has built the Author & Sister website and an extensive author platform and has made new contacts, and Author has started this blog that she writes for you, and so the exposure of the current book is likely to be somewhat higher, Author supposes. The exposure of the current book, and of Author herself.

Sitting here, essentially taking step after step toward exposure with every answer she writes to every question, Author is in effect coming to stand alongside her books, so that she will be as exposed as they are. And she finds herself wondering what she should say. Not about this book that she has written and that is now being published, or about the previous one, which is also being asked about in some of these questions—talking about her books, this she is easily able to do. But talking about herself, that’s a different story. What does she say, what does she let her readers know? This same question, you should know, also arises sometimes for these posts that Author writes for you every week. With every post she writes, Author wonders what she should tell you about herself, what you might want to know.

Publication comes with exposure. Author accepts that, but it’s difficult for her. Author isn’t good with exposure. She is used to sitting here by herself, in this room she is writing to you from, in front of a laptop. She writes, and she does so alone. And before she became a writer, before she was Author, she was self-employed for years and her job allowed her to work on a computer in the privacy of her home, rarely communicating with others other than by email, perhaps the occasional phone call. She is used to being by herself, in effect hidden, not many outside her family allowed a glimpse into her life. Even now, only a rare few know that she writes. It’s not intentional—she is simply a private person, life has taught her that, and she isn’t used to this, to the exposure, to letting people get to know her. Letting you get to know her.

Yet now she is putting not only her books but also herself out there. She is answering questions about herself, and it’s not easy for her (note the understatement here). But it’s important, Author knows. It’s important because, as Sister keeps telling Author, you should know the person behind the books you read and behind these posts Author writes for you every week. And so Author is making an effort. She’ll get used to it. She wants to.

A brief word about the Everward sisters’ Canada Quest: yes, some exposure is needed here, too. Author promises to write a post about it not too long after the current book launch. And Author keeps her promises.

And a tip from Author and Sister to the writers among you, something they themselves are still learning to do: let your readers get to know you.

 

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