My husband and I set an entertainment budget each month. It includes books, DVD’s, iTunes, stuff like that. Today is March 2nd, and I’m already close to capping my portion of the budget. And there are like 15 more books I really want to buy. Sigh.
It’s not just money that constrains my reading, either. It’s time, a commodity that is probably more precious than money. I’ve got more books on my kindle right now than I will be able to read in March, and yet, I’m still clicking on links in Tweets and taking suggestions from blogs. I wish I had unlimited time to read. There was this sit-com on in the 80s, Out of this World, in which the main character, Evie Garland, was able to touch her hands together and stop time. If I had a superpower, that would be the one. I could read to my heart’s content–well, I could read to my book budget’s content).
There are so many new authors I want to check out, friend-authors I want to support, and established blockbuster authors I can’t get enough of. It’s hard to prioritize. Occasionally I will support an author I know through social networking and buy their book even if I know it might be a little while before I can make room for it on my to-read shelf, but for the most part I stick to only buying books I’m really excited about digging into.
If you’re a new name in the publishing world, or if you’re new in indie publishing, you’re competing with a HUGE market of great works and great authors. You’ve got to be amazing to get readers interested in your books and slavering for more. It’s not just dollars you’re asking your readers for, it is hours of their precious time. As you write, think about how you can infuse your stories with your passion so your characters jump off the page and your plots keep readers voraciously tearing through the pages.
Happy writing, and reading, everyone!