We even worry when a book is doing very well. Readers let us know how much they’ve enjoyed it. The Amazon numbers are great. But how long will they continue to be up there? Will my fans like the next book as much? If they don’t, will the publisher continue to buy books that I’ve written? Am I a one-book author? Only a five-book author? Why doesn’t my book appear in bookstores where anyone can see it? Why isn’t it nominated for an award?
No matter where we are on the ladder of our writing career, we worry. Each new book we publish must stand on its own. Readers compare our books to those of our fellow authors. Even worse, they compare our books to ones we’ve written before.
Which is when I remind myself of all the wonderful comments readers have made over the years--they like my style of writing. They love my characters and the way they interact. They couldn’t put my book down. Surely, I don’t lose this ability as I write one book and then another. Though sometimes the final results vary. In the past few years I’ve been disappointed by the last book four of my favorite authors have written. If they—much more prestigious writers than I am—have produced novels I’ve found too long or downright boring—then I can be forgiven for writing a novel that doesn’t always strike a homerun. All I can do is keep on writing books, and writing them the best way I know how.