IWSG — How Much Is Enough?

Today’s the day for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group (IWSG) where, on the first Wednesday of every month, writers get together to share their insecurities and offer encouragement. The IWSG was created by Alex J. Cavanaugh, and you can learn all about it and sign up for it here. Insecure Writers Support Group Badge

Last year when I published my first book and saw it on the shelves of Barnes & Noble and independent bookstores, I thought that was the best thing ever and I’d never be able to top it.

Today while out running errands, I stopped at one of the Phoenix Bookstores, a local indie, and took a couple of photos. Book 2 is on the shelves now, and I have to say having two books out there is even better.






So what’s my insecurity this month? Marketing. How much is enough? Since publishing Book 2 in mid-May, I’ve run a wonderfully epic blog tour and participated as a vendor in two farmer’s market/craft shows and the Renaissance Festival. I’ve got more market/craft shows lined up, along with VT Comic Con, and I just set a date with Barnes & Noble for a book signing, coming up in about two weeks (Yes!).

All this is great for sales and getting the word out, but it’s also time-consuming, and I’m not getting much writing done. At some point I have to say enough is enough and get back to writing, because if I don’t, there won’t be any new books to sell.

Does anyone know if there’s any kind of rule of thumb for how long to market a new book when it comes out? How much effort do other authors out there put into it? I’d love to know!


The July 6 IWSG question: What’s the best thing someone has ever said about your writing?

I love it when people tell me how much they care about my characters. They can’t wait to read the next book to find out what happens to them. That means I’ve written my characters well and made them as real to others as they are to me. And to me, that’s the best compliment.





© Lori L. MacLaughlin and Writing, Reading, and the Pursuit of Dreams, 2016. All rights reserved.

38 thoughts on “IWSG — How Much Is Enough?

  1. PS I don’t know that there is ever enough when you are an entrepreneur. The rock only moves uphill if you push it or drag it. Enough is enough maybe when the next book comes out? Guessing but that would be my thinking, however, you cannot keep going at full blast and not burn out, so pace yourself and enjoyed the moments in between and remember to breathe.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Congrats on having those books on the shelves! That’s a huge accomplishment. But as to marketing, I’m afraid it probably depends on how much you want. If you want to achieve more, you have to work more, but if you’re happy with how it is, then less is okay. Like everything, I don’t think there is a right or wrong, but just a what’s right for you.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Woot woot! It’s fun to see authors on the book shelves. You’re doing much better than I am, so I’m watching you for advice (thus meaning I have none to give). 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I love those photos! I was too embarrassed to take pictures of my book the first time it hit a bookstore shelf. Now, I’m over that embarrassment. It’s too exciting to miss. 🙂
    I’m totally blown away by your marketing work!!! I haven’t done nearly that much, or enough. I’m not sure what the rule of thumb is, but at some point, you have to make time to write. That’s my tiny bit of knowledge.

    Happy Writing and Marketing!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Tyrean! It’s definitely too exciting to miss. With your last name, you’d be on the other side of G.R.R. Martin. We’d be on the same shelf! 🙂 Making time to write is always harder over the summer with my kids home and everything going on, but I need to start squeezing it in. That’s my goal.


  5. Oh Lori,
    I am still working on finishing up my first manuscript so that I can get an agent, so I couldn’t help you. However, I have read the answers here and the feedback is great for me because it gives me some idea of the market.
    All the best.
    Shalom aleichem,

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Through your writing, your characters have touched a nerve in your readers. IMHO, with the condition of the world today, readers want to escape into another world. Your writing offers that opportunity. The characters are real and live in people’s minds and hearts.

    When you participated, as a vendor, at the Renaissance Festival were you in costume? If so, what fun. Sounds like your marketing efforts are moving full steam ahead. I can appreciate needed to keep the momentum moving. Maybe, writing needs to be simply capturing nuggets on the back of envelopes until there is time to write complete scenes.

    With all the excitement, please remember to breath and allow your body to rest and restore. Congratulations.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Lynn! I hope so. I read for escapism, too.

      Yes, I was wearing a medieval Robin Hood-type costume. So many people dressed up. It was really fun to see.

      Writing will have to be little snippets here and there until this fall, I think. I’m hoping to work in a few breaks here and there. We’ll see how it goes.


  7. what a feeling! hooray and yippee!!
    next time, get in the picture with your book so we can see how happy you are =)

    it’s not like you’ll run out of people who don’t know about your book, right? keep going! marketing time is up to you – plus the first one gets more buys when the next one comes out too.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well, I don’t know about being an expert, but I’m trying. 🙂 Ask away!
      No, it never feels like enough. But it’s hard to write more great books when I have to spend so much time marketing. A Catch-22 if I ever saw one.


  8. Yes!! OMG this is my problem exactly! I was motoring along with my new WIP from Jan to March. Then Bloodwalker was contracted and my life became a whirlwind of edits, cover finalizing, querying reviewers, proofreads, marketing, and keeping all the social media balls in the air. My poor WIP hasn’t been worked on in 3 months. Argh! How can you possibly do all the marketing AND write too? I hope the pace will slow now, since the hard work is done. But who knows? If anything works for you, please let me know. I’m drowning over here….

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Definitely an amazing feeling to see your book in a store:) I still haven’t mastered the balance of writing and marketing my books… but I hope to find out one day:)

    Liked by 1 person

  10. So cool about your books being on the shelves! It does seem like people tend to do a few months lighter marketing in advance, then intensive marketing in the month or two leading up to the release, then a few more months, before leveling off. It’s an awful lot of marketing.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. After I recovered from channeling your excitement at seeing “Trouble by Any Other Name” on physical bookshelves, I read with interest your comments. That is a great question–how long to keep marketing a book.

    Liked by 1 person

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