Did you know there’s an author’s purgatory? Yup. It sits between the words “debut author” and “New York Times bestselling author”. You’re grinning right now. I know. That’s a big gap and most of us are sitting in the gully saying, “What the hell was I thinking?” but keep stroking. Remember my motto. When creativity and determination cross paths, a book is born. Don’t freak out when you hear that big silent pause after the manuscript is done.
If you’re like me and no one can see your house from the street because it looks like an enormous dust bunny or that every fast food place in town knows you by your first name or worse…you walk into Starbucks and don’t have to say a word and your drink is waiting for you at the other end of the bar…these are all signs that you’re an author. I don’t know, maybe you’re more organized than I am, but until you make it to the NYTimes list you probably can’t afford a housekeeper. Could be that you’re a faster writer than me. In which case, you don’t have to email your kids a picture of yourself to remind them of what you look like.
So, do you need a street team? Let me think about that for a nano-second. Yes! That is unless you can carry the weight of the world on your shoulders. Whether you call them avid fans (I call them God sends) or give them an official group name, mine are Waters’ Warriors, and gather them together on Facebook, they are a huge help. Bringing people onboard is up to your discretion but the main reason is keeping in touch and marketing. Four years ago, I was wandering through the endless websites and trying to find a company who would publish my first story. It’s a cold, dark, scary place when you’re aimlessly plodding through the literary jungle.
Do this! Don’t, heaven forbid, do that. Your eyes are bouncing around like a bobble doll on the dash of a car by the time you’re done. There’s only so many hours in a day. If you work a full time job like me, you’re going to need help. During my voyage to some kind of literary genius (I’m being facetious)I had never heard of street teams.
At a convention, a woman by the name of Kimberly Hickey approached me. She educated me and then went right on ahead and created the team. God, I love a pro-active woman. We’ve grown together, and together we’ll hurdle every milestone along the way. We’re five books into the journey now, and it’s a machine rolling on the efforts of people like Kimberly and my entire team. They share. They care. We swap stories. We’re there for each other when life kicks us all in the ass. And believe me, it does. Babies are born, loved ones pass away. A street team will become an extended part of your family.
I suppose you could walk the path alone, but what the hell fun is that!
Love, Hope & Faith