Deep Thoughts by Justin Leslie

Aug 07, 2021 by Justin S Leslie
I was asked by a new author how long I’ve been writing, and my answer was rather shocking to me.

Here are some stats.

1. First book e-book/paperback published 21 months ago 12/19
2. First Audiobook published 17 months ago 2/20
3. First 1,000th audiobook sold 12/20
4. E-books/paperbacks published to date. 9
5. Audiobooks published to date 6 # 7 coming this month!
6. Kick as other authors met (better than me) 6
7. Working with one of my favorite narrators Luke Daniels and finding another rockstar to work with, Jarret Lemaster on the Sinking man series.
8. Number of editors before finding the right one 5 and well over a year.
9. Getting one of the best cover artist involved in my projects (FYI this is coming…..) 8/1/21!!!

Next targets

1. Figuring out marketing…….work in progress. Reason for new Max covers. This was the first thing the marketing team stated we need to do.
2. Publishing company? We will see. I have one target that is soon to be worked through. I have politely declined 4 direct requests to join. This is one of the biggest lies of the writing world. No matter how good or bad you are. You can do it on your own to a point….

What I’ve learned.

1. No matter how good you, or I think it is. That first book will always haunt me. There are days I wish I could go back in time and re-write it. But… that is a rabbit I don’t want to chase. I agree with most of the 3.5-4 star reviews. You have to have thick skin. People often don’t read what the book is about and assume it’s something it’s often not. It’s frustrating, but I realize that most people that make it to book 2 get it…...There are times I want to pull book one and re-release it as a pre-qual.
2. Other authors are amazing people.
3. If you are an author and expect 1,000 reviews even in a year, you have to realize two things. 1. Many books are marketed (certain publishing groups) and have paid reviewers that branch off and are fairly automatic. I learned this from someone directly. Hey $1K, I’ll get you 1K reviews in 30 days. 2. They will come over time organically. Take the good with the bad. Not everyone is going to love your work, or understand it.
4. This is a big one. When a writer like myself has a background as I do, not everyone will understand what people in some of these fields actually do in the real world. Or act to point. It’s frustrating, but I’ve finally realized that not everyone will. I literally started to dumb down how funny and often comically abrasive folks in Law Enforcement and the Military can be, especially around each other.
5. Keep writing, but take breaks.
6. Social media is a must…Youtube channel coming!!
7. Writing can be a lot of things, but in my opinion, is the following. Hobby, passion, lifestyle, job, investment, and lastly, a career. It’s work and you have to feed the beast and in that means making money from your work to pay for more. End of the day, never quit your day job…