The Rebel Author Podcast
085 How Mindset Can Improve Your Craft with Kristina Adams

085 How Mindset Can Improve Your Craft with Kristina Adams

May 12, 2021

Episode Show Notes

In this episode we cover: 

  • Why mindset is so important
  • The most common mindset roadblocks
  • Tools and techniques for helping you improve your mindset
  • How to keep your starting energy going to help you finish your book
  • Mindset myths

This week’s question is: What aspect of mindset do you struggle with most?

Recommendation of the week is: The World of LORE: Dreadful
Places
by Aaron Mahnke 

Apple

Kobo

Amazon UK

Amazon USA

***This podcast uses affiliate links

Links and events I mentioned are:

The Rebel Author Diaries Anthology Submissions are now open.

Find out more here.

Find out more about Kristina on:

Twitter

Facebook

Productivity for Writers

How to Write Believable Characters

 

Rebel of the Week is: Mira Monroe

If you’d like to be a Rebel of the week please do send in your story, it can be any kind of rebellion. You can email your rebel story to rebelauthorpodcast@gmail.com or instagram me @sachablackauthor

1 new patron this week, welcome and thank you to Shane Milar and thank you to Juneta for editing her pledge up. Of course, a big thank you to all my existing patrons. If you’d like to support the show, and get early access to all the episodes as well as bonus content you can from as little as $2 a month by visiting: www.patreon.com/sachablack

 

This Show is Sponsored by ProWritingAid

Find out more about ProWritingAid here.

DISCOUNT CODE: REBEL25

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084 How to Self-Publish a Graphic Novel with Marcus E Ako

084 How to Self-Publish a Graphic Novel with Marcus E Ako

May 5, 2021

Episode Show Notes

In this episode we cover: 

  • The differences between writing a novel and a graphic novel
  • How to actually write a graphic novel
  • How to choreograph a fight scene with an illustrator
  • How story arcs work across a single graphic novel and a series
  • How to find and work with an illustrator
  • Mistakes to avoid

This week’s question is: Do you read graphic novels? If so, what are your recommendations?

Recommendation of the week is:  How to Get Your Book Into Schools and Double Your Income With Volume Sales by David H Hendrickson

Apple

Kobo

Amazon UK

Amazon USA

**This podcast uses affiliate links

Links and events I mentioned:

The Rebel Author Diaries Anthology Submissions are now open.

Find out more here.

Sacha’s Proofer / Workbook Editor: Tim Seabrook — Fifth Ring Press

Connect with Marcus:

Twitter - @Marcus_Ako; @IonWritersBlock 

Instagram - @IonWritersBlock

Book - Call 1-800-KillAGuy: Book 1

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Rebel of the Week is: Yanni Jade

If you’d like to be a Rebel of the week please do send in your story, it can be any kind of rebellion. You can email your rebel story to rebelauthorpodcast@gmail.com or instagram me @sachablackauthor

2 new patrons this week, welcome and thank you to Shelly Sara and Stephanie Johnson. And of course, a big thank you to all my existing patrons. If you’d like to support the show, and get early access to all the episodes as well as bonus content you can from as little as $2 a month by visiting: www.patreon.com/sachablack

 

5 Lessons from Two Years of Writing Full-Time

5 Lessons from Two Years of Writing Full-Time

April 30, 2021

It feels like a blink since the original post “lessons from one year of writing full-time”. But it is with ENORMOUS pride, a slight maniacal cackle and a deep sigh of caffeine-fuelled relief that I get to say this is 5 lessons from two years of writing full-time.

 

5 Lessons from Two Years of Writing Full-Time 

 

Lesson 1: The Income Update

In my first year, my only goal was to survive. I was desperate not to go back to the corporate hellmare that was my old day job. 

I did that, yay me.

But I also ended year one feeling like I was rudderless and hadn’t pushed myself sufficiently on the income front—which, funnily enough, I hadn’t because I was so consumed by just surviving.

Year two was a financial shifting year. While I wanted to beat my old day job income, it was more important to me to reduce the freelance in order to focus on my business and create the financial and life freedom I really wanted. But I'm also a competitive bitch, and STILL wanted to increase my overall income, a tall order given I was starting from a lower baseline after giving up a lot of the freelance gigs. Thanks to a frankly terrifying amount of caffeine, a little hysteria and a few gins, I managed it. Turnover was up 22% and net profit up 67%. 

But the really exciting development is the change in breakdown of income. In year one, 75% of my income came from freelance work, 17% from book sales and 8% from everything else like affiliate income, speaking fees etc.

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But in year two, what changed dramatically. I’m genuinely surprised, shocked and delighted to see the shift. It shows how much of a lie time is, the last year has felt endless and so, so fast all at the same time. 

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But the summary is that I halved the income from freelance which sat at just 37% of turnover and increased sales income to the point where it’s now my biggest income stream at 44% of turnover. This makes me crazy happy and hungry to continue decreasing the freelance income and continue boosting my other streams. Interestingly, my “everything else” bucket more than doubled in year two and that’s thanks in part to the podcast, sponsorships, and patreon but also to course sales and a variety of other income streams.

A takeaway here for me is that while I doubled the array of “everything else” income streams, it still only accounted for 19% AND in order to generate that, it took as much effort if not more than everything else. Realistically, it’s the books that shifted the income percentages and so this coming year, I must focus my energies on getting more books written.

In my second year, my main income streams included: book sales, freelance work, patreon, merchandise, affiliate income, sponsorship, course sales, consulting and speaking. 

Year two assets include: 8 nonfiction books and 3 nonfiction box sets and 2 fiction books.

In year three, my goal is to continue growing turnover and profit, continue reducing the % freelance work accounts for and increase my wide book sales income. In addition, I want to add audiobooks and more courses to my asset portfolio. I still haven’t beaten my old day job income so that goal is burning hard now!

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Takeaway 1: Annual analysis is really important to help give you perspective. I’ve been flailing a bit recently with the direction I should be going and this has helped to solidify that.

 

Lesson 2: Self-Belief is Everything

It’s only now that I look back at the end of my second year of business that I realise just quite how much of my first year was spent in crippling fear. My sphincter was constantly quivering at the thought of having to go back to a job I hated and the prospect of being flung back into that depressive “no way out” mindset. I spoke earlier about how I didn’t care about anything other than surviving and making sure I didn’t go back and that was all consuming in the first year. 

It’s taken me two years to get rid of that fear. I still fidget a little, itchy sphincter hasn’t totally gone, but I have self-belief in a way that I never had before. I know without a doubt that I won’t go back to a day job. This career, hell, any career working for myself is for life. Even if I end up doing something else as a business, this life of working for myself is not something I can or will ever give up. I was not made to work for other people but accepting that or more, being comfortable and confident enough to accept that has taken time.

Indies are especially good at wanting things now, now, now. I’m like it too. I think it’s because our businesses are in our control, therefore we want results now, to publish yesterday, the covers last week and the income ALL DAY LONG BABY. 

But there is something intangible that “time” can give you. Growth doesn’t happen instantly. You don’t just quit your job and have the self-belief that you can do this, or the income appear instantly. Shit is rocky for a while, business is hard, and it is a rollercoaster of wobbling belief, income and learning. But fuck me is it the most glorious rollercoaster out there. This second year, despite it being in extremely difficult global times, has allowed me to blossom and grow in confidence and self-belief and the security that I can do this for the long haul and things are going to be okay.

Takeaway 2: no matter how quick or amazing your income balloons, there is something that only time can give you, a kind of security blanket of confidence and assurance that you’ve got this. It’s a hard pill to swallow when you’re drowning in a society of “nowness” but embrace it, buckle up baby and grip hard, this is a rocky rollercoaster ride.

 

Lesson 3: The Honeymoon Period Ends

Alright, yes, this job is fucking amazing. I will never say otherwise. However, every job no matter the business or industry you’re in, has a grind. And this year the honeymoon period well and truly ended for me. Perhaps it was made worse and brought forward because of Covid and the absolute devastation it caused on my time and sanity. But the honeymoon period of working for myself is definitely over.

Does that mean I regret leaving my day job? Abso-fuckin-lutely not. This is the best job in the world. However, managing a family, a school kid, a wife a house and a business is A LOT. Because I have work “flexibility” nine times out of ten the “can you dos” fall to me. The ad hoc life shit will fall on my plate and I ended up doing 95% of the homeschooling. Which at six hours a day did not leave much time or energy for business.

The grind of having to do admin and emails and deal with everything else life throws at me as well as work a number of evenings is tough. Without having had a proper holiday in the last 18 months I’m feeling worn if I’m honest. There’s a kind of viral exhaustion I can’t get rid of because staycations are never real breaks when you work for yourself.

What this means is that I need to keep things fresh. I need to do projects that I both enjoy and that bring me income. Finding the balance is key to retaining my enthusiasm.

Takeaway 3: Holidays away from the house and my office are essential to get real rejuvenation time. Reducing or outsourcing “grind” tasks over the next year to ensure I stick with what only I can do is essential. I also need to find a way to work less evenings it’s having a severe impact on my energy and enthusiasm. 

 

Lesson 4: Input and Strengths

In my first year I was so concerned with just surviving that I didn’t put much thought into learning, growth or development. But as I neared the last third of my second year, I felt a gaping emptiness and my ability to write was being affected.

It’s in large part thanks to Becca Syme and her Better Faster Academy that I’ve been able to learn more about my strengths and make them work smarter for me. Case in point, I’ve upped my reading input from 60-70 books a year to 130-140ish. The result? In the first month alone I output 30% more words. Whether I like it or not, I have a high need for input. I’d assumed it was just visual stimuli I needed but apparently binge watching Netflix isn’t cutting it for my brain, it wants to eat books and so I will deliver as a humble servant.

I think the other lesson is that by being aware of my strengths, intentionally learning and trying to develop them, I can have real tangible results. But I do need to give myself the time and headspace to reflect and learn and input. Something I find difficult from the outset because it doesn’t feel like work. If it helps me develop, work better or smarter, then clearly I need to do it.

Takeaway 4: Sometimes the things that create the biggest effect on your bottom line don’t feel like work, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t or that it’s not important. Far from it. You have to do those things. Those are the things that allow you to grow.

 

Lesson 5: You Have Permission

This is going to sound bonkers from the mother of villains and queen of rebels. BUT, it’s very easy to institutionalise yourself. When you live day in day out with how your business is and doing things “because they work” it’s easy to forget you can pivot or change or adapt.

When it comes to someone else telling me what to do, I’ll always rebel or find a way to break the rule, but I’m often left floundering when it comes to myself. I tend to be reluctant to give myself permission, or I let doubt creep in and prevent me from doing the thing I know I should be doing.

That’s why I have Post-its reminding me “YOU HAVE PERMISSION”. This is the life I created and the one I want to live, taking the time to write the book I want to write IS OKAY, SACHA. Take this post, I had to force myself to sit down and do it even though I knew it would be helpful.

Expectation is a slippery fucker, whether it’s from external sources or yourself, it’s weighty and meaty and it can stop you doing things you either want to do or know would be good for your business.

No more. 

Takeaway 5: There are a couple of BIG game changing things I need to do this year and I need to stop holding myself back. No more fucking about Sacha, you have lofty goals and you’re not going to apologise for them. I have permission. I just need to get on with it.

 

One Last Thought:

No matter what happens, this is better

This was one of the lessons from my first year full-time. No matter what happens this life is better. I stand by that, if anything I believe it even more firmly this year than last. I keep two sentimental photos from this journey. The first is the Post-it I signed and dated saying I’d be writing full-time in 2020. I left in 2019, and every time I look back at the Post-it I smile. The other photo is the photo of me on one of my worst days in my old job. I’m broken and in so much pain that it’s genuinely uncomfortable even now for me to look at. I keep it because it’s also a short, sharp annual reminder not to get lazy, not to take this life for granted and to appreciate every second I’m lucky enough to do this as a job. Yes, running an author business is hard, yes the honeymoon period is over, yes it’s grueling, but it’s also the best fucking thing I could have done and I’d die before I gave it up.

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083 Publishing from Zero in 2021 with David Gaughran

083 Publishing from Zero in 2021 with David Gaughran

April 28, 2021

Episode Show Notes

In this episode we cover: 

  • What are the key elements you need to take into account when starting from zero
  • Most common indie publishing mistakes new writers make
  • What business and platform basics do you need in place before you publish
  • What marketing should a writer do when they only have one book
  • How do you continue to get sales after launch?

This week’s question is: What worries you about starting from zero?

Recommendation of the week is: This is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone

Apple

Kobo

Amazon UK

Amazon USA

**This podcast uses affiliate links

This is a link explaining how the book was written: A Conversation with Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone

Links and events I mentioned:

The Rebel Author Diaries Anthology Submissions are now open.

Find out more here.

Connect with David Gaughran:

Website

Youtube

Twitter

 

Rebel of the Week is: VAL NEIL

If you’d like to be a Rebel of the week please do send in your story, it can be any kind of rebellion. You can email your rebel story to rebelauthorpodcast@gmail.com or instagram me @sachablackauthor

1 new patron this week, welcome and thank you to Jennifer Thompson. And  of course, a big thank you to all my existing patrons. If you’d like to support the show, and get early access to all the episodes as well as bonus content you can from as little as $2 a month by visiting: www.patreon.com/sachablack

 

THIS EPISODE IS SPONSORED BY KOBO WRITING LIFE

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Visit Kobo Writing Life here, read the Kobo Writing Life blog here, and listen to their podcast here.

082 From Busyness to Business: The Art of Creative Time Management with Steven Watson

082 From Busyness to Business: The Art of Creative Time Management with Steven Watson

April 21, 2021

Episode Show Notes

In this episode we cover: 

  • Why we still struggle with time management despite there being so many tools out there
  • Mistakes people make with time management
  • Time management mindset shifts
  • How to deal with your inbox
  • The Pyramid of Time Mastery

This week’s question is: What are your personal time management tips?

Recommendation of the week is: Taking the Short Tack by Matty Dalrymple and Mark Lefebvre 

Apple

Kobo

Amazon UK

Amazon USA

**This podcast uses affiliate links

Links and events I mentioned are:

The Rebel Author Diaries Anthology Submissions are now open.

Find out more here.

Connect with Steven:

LinkedIn

Website

His book

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Rebel of the Week is: Alexa

If you’d like to be a Rebel of the week please do send in your story, it can be any kind of rebellion. You can email your rebel story to rebelauthorpodcast@gmail.com or instagram me @sachablackauthor

1 new patron this week, welcome and thank you to Tauna Sonn-lemarbe. And of course, a big thank you to all my existing patrons. If you’d like to support the show, and get early access to all the episodes as well as bonus content you can from as little as $2 a month by visiting: www.patreon.com/sachablack

 

081 Creative Self-Publishing with Orna Ross

081 Creative Self-Publishing with Orna Ross

April 14, 2021

Episode Show Notes

In this episode we cover: 

  • What creative self-publishing means
  • What are success measures for indie authors
  • How to harness the thing that’s uniquely you
  • Mistakes to avoid with publishing contracts

This week’s question is: What is your success measure?

Recommendation of the week is: The Liar’s Daughter by Megan Cooley Peterson

Apple

Kobo

Amazon UK

Amazon USA

**This podcast uses affiliate links

Links and events I mentioned are:

The Rebel Author Diaries Anthology Submissions are now open.

Find out more here.

Find out more about Orna on:

Twitter offers self-publishing advice for creatives

Instagram Page is for her poetry

Her Facebook Author Page is for her novels and also has a bit of everything else 

Join ALLi here

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Book Link: Creative Self-Publishing: ALLi’s Guide to Independent Publishing for Authors and Poets

 

Rebel of the Week is: Bobbie Ann Atwood

If you’d like to be a Rebel of the week please do send in your story, it can be any kind of rebellion. You can email your rebel story to rebelauthorpodcast@gmail.com or instagram me @sachablackauthor

1 new patron this week, welcome to Lynne Wham, but of course, a big thank you to all my existing patrons. If you’d like to support the show, and get early access to all the episodes as well as bonus content you can from as little as $2 a month by visiting: www.patreon.com/sachablack

This Show is Sponsored by ProWritingAid

Find out more about ProWritingAid here.

DISCOUNT CODE: REBEL25

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080 How to Create Rich Writing with Krystal Sutherland

080 How to Create Rich Writing with Krystal Sutherland

April 7, 2021

Episode Show Notes

In this episode we cover: 

  • How to create rich and memorable characters
  • How to develop chilling atmospheres
  • How to use the senses in your writing
  • How to introduce your characters in the most impactful way possible
  • How to create deeper emotions in your stories

This week’s question is:  What’s the last book you absolutely couldn’t put down?

Recommendation of the week is: House of Hollow by Krystal Sutherland 

Kobo

Apple

Amazon UK

Amazon USA

**This podcast uses affiliate links

Links and events I mentioned are:

The Rebel Author Diaries Anthology Submissions are now open.

Find out more here.

Find out more about Krystal on:

Instagram 

House of Hollow is out now

 

Rebel of the Week is: Helen Sheuerer 

If you’d like to be a Rebel of the Week please do send in your story, it can be any kind of rebellion. You can email your rebel story to rebelauthorpodcast@gmail.com or instagram me @sachablackauthor

2 new patrons this week, a huge welcome and thank you to Sarah Louise and Kate Swed. And of course, a big thank you to all my existing patrons. If you’d like to support the show, and get early access to all the episodes as well as bonus content you can from as little as $2 a month by visiting: www.patreon.com/sachablack

 

079 How Storybrand Sells Books with Amy Mertz

079 How Storybrand Sells Books with Amy Mertz

March 31, 2021

Episode Show Notes

In this episode we cover: 

  • What is storybrand?
  • How writers can incorporate storybrand into their marketing
  • Mistakes people make with storybrand
  • The key elements of storybrand including a worked example
  • How to incorporate storybrand into your side hustles

This week’s question is:  Are you wide or in KU and why?

Recommendation of the week is: Wide for the Win by Mark Lefebvre 

Kobo

Apple

Amazon UK

Amazon USA

**This podcast uses affiliate links

Links and events I mentioned are:

The Rebel Author Diaries Anthology Submissions are now open

Find out more here.

Find out more about Amy on:

Instagram: @amymertz / @ifcstudios

ifcstudios.com/rebel

 

Rebel of the Week is: Dharma Kelleher

If you’d like to be a Rebel of the week please do send in your story, it can be any kind of rebellion. You can email your rebel story to rebelauthorpodcast@gmail.com or instagram me @sachablackauthor

3 new patrons this week. A huge welcome and thank you to Nathan Scammell, Heather Adame Saenz and Moninder Gainda. And of course, a big thank you to all my existing patrons. If you’d like to support the show, and get early access to all the episodes as well as bonus content, you can from as little as $2 a month by visiting: www.patreon.com/sachablack

 

078 How to Sell Ebooks and Audiobooks on Kobo with Tara Cremin

078 How to Sell Ebooks and Audiobooks on Kobo with Tara Cremin

March 24, 2021

Episode Show Notes

In this episode we cover: 

  • Kobo’s new audiobook platform
  • How to publish audio with Kobo
  • How to price your audiobook
  • What’s hot and what’s not in audio right now
  • Marketing tactics that work for Kobo right now

This week’s question is:  What are your Q2 goals?

Recommendation of the week is: How to Make a Living with Your Writing by Joanna Penn

Kobo

**This podcast uses affiliate links

Links and events I mentioned are:

The Rebel Author Diaries Anthology Submissions are now open: Find out more here.

Mark’s Wide for the Win Q&A Replay

Find out more about Kobo:

You can sometimes hear Tara as a guest host on the Kobo Writing Life Podcast. If you’re interested in publishing with KWL, create your account today at www.kobo.com/writinglife.

Website 

Facebook 

Twitter 

Instagram

Links to the books Tara mentioned:

Birds Art Life by Kyo Maclear

A Ghost in the Throat by Doireann Ní Ghríofa

For audio, here’s some links that may be of interest:

KWL Audiobook Press Release

How to Publish your Audiobook

Podcast interview with Kobo Audiobook Merchandiser

 

Listener Rebel of the Week is: Lynne Wham

If you’d like to be a Rebel of the week please do send in your story, it can be any kind of rebellion. You can email your rebel story to rebelauthorpodcast@gmail.com or tweet me @rebelauthorpod

Thank you to Heather who recently upped her pledge and has joined us in the Rebel Slack group.

1 new patrons this week, a huge welcome and thank you to Noelle Davidson. And of course, a big to all my existing patrons. If you’d like to support the show, and get early access to all the episodes as well as bonus content you can from as little as $2 a month by visiting: www.patreon.com/sachablack

 

THIS EPISODE IS SPONSORED BY KOBO WRITING LIFE

Logo_KWL_RGB_KWL.png

Visit Kobo Writing Life here, read the Kobo Writing Life blog here, and listen to their podcast here.

 

BONUS EPISODE - Wide for the Win: How to Sell More Books Wide with Mark Lefebvre

BONUS EPISODE - Wide for the Win: How to Sell More Books Wide with Mark Lefebvre

March 19, 2021

Get your copy of Mark's book Wide for the Win which is PACKED full of tips and tricks for marketing your books wide here: https://books2read.com/b/wideforthewin

Find out more about Mark on his website: http://markleslie.ca/

Join the Rebel Author Facebook community here for more live events and writing support: https://www.facebook.com/groups/rebelauthors/ 

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