Social Media and Getting My Book Published
I began my career as a computer programmer back in the days of punch card decks. I was part of the evolution from mainframes to networks to clouds. When I showed off my Blackberry 6210 phone, everyone I knew said the idea was stupid: nobody wanted to speak into such a large device, the cool people were getting the smallest phones (like this) and why would you want to get email on a phone anyway.
When I was pastor at the Ark Church, people didn’t understand why I thought it was important to set up a website. They didn’t know who would watch a streamed video of a sermon. They couldn’t fathom who might want to download a podcast. What was a podcast anyway? I even set up a Second Life presence.
So if I was so cutting edge, why didn’t I have a social media presence until 2016?
I’m just not a fan.
I foresaw that it would be a time dump. I felt people would waste time without being productive. Also, having experienced the growth of email and recognizing some of the interpersonal problems it created, I suspected Web 2.0 would be even worse.
Of course, we have seen both of these fears come to pass: people spend hours a day doing Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pintrest, even to becoming addicted. As for the relational issues, I suspect we all know someone who is no longer speaking to someone else because of a Facebook post.
So why have I now jumped aboard?
Honestly, I wouldn’t have if I didn’t need to. There is only one reason I use Social Media: the book publishing industry insists upon it. To get a book published, I need to have a large following.
I get it. It costs money to publish a book. What business would rather sell a product with no known market when there is another product with built-in customers ready to buy? When a writer with an established customer base approaches an agent or a publisher, it removes a huge percentage of the risk.
As someone without that following, I’m annoyed that being published is about how many people like my posts rather than how well I write. I suspect many great writers might never be published because they don’t use Social Media. That said, I understand where the publishers are coming from. It is just part of the game.
So it’s my own fault. I wrote my first book before knowing this. I spent a year writing and editing only to find no one will publish it unless I have a well-attended platform. I should have done my homework.
But I’m not sure there is a world where I would have done that homework. I didn’t write the book to become a famous writer. I wrote it because I thought it was important.
The name of the book is “Rethinking Some Popular Christian Teachings”. It highlights 23 teachings that most every pastor and Bible study leader believe but are inaccurate. I use logic, the Bible and teachings from past and present Christians to make my points. When I hear pastors preaching these beliefs, I remember I once taught them as well.
Unfortunately, since I don’t have a following, publishers won’t touch this. So, I am approaching my second project differently. I’m actively building a following. I am also releasing the work in piecemeal.
I’m just about done with the second “book” in my series called “Why God is So Amazing”. The book is about God’s Immutability. When it’s complete, I’m going to give it away with Book 1 (God’s Holiness).
My objectives: get feedback on these books so I can update and improve them; get people interested in the series so when all 12 books are written and merged into one study guide, there will be an existing audience for it; make a little money on the way since I am currently bringing in zero income.
I want to reward those of you here with me during this “building-followers” period. You have read this post and want to help out. I really appreciate you for that! Subscribe to my post and leave a comment (just write “Thanks David” if you’re not sure what to say). If you’ve already subscribed, just leave a comment. When Book 2 is ready, I’ll email you Books 1 & 2 for free.
In case I wasn’t clear, sharing and liking my posts are really helpful towards my goal to be published. Commenting is also a tremendous support (“Ain’t too proud to beg…”). If you like the post, please use the links below to let others know about me. Thanks!