There’s a reason why you shouldn’t hit PUBLISH in the middle of moving.
Last month, my landlords decided to put the condo on the market and I jumped at the chance to get out of my lease a couple of months early. I had been there for ten years; I loved the place, but I have been planning a major move for this fall.
I had two weeks to pack and move which made things a bit… hectic. AND, just for fun, I had set a goal to publish two books a month and I was already behind. But I had the next book ready, I checked it and rechecked it, and hit publish.
A little too soon, apparently.
The Pain of Jumping the Gun
Once I had settled into my new digs and my brain had cleared a bit, I checked the paperback copy of my latest book (The 8 Step Marketing Plan) because errors jump out at you when you’re reading a hard copy that you miss on a screen. I came across a passage that looked like it came directly from my notes. No punctuation. Very choppy.
So… That’s embarrassing.
I mean yeah, there are always typos, even in books published by major publishing houses. But this was more than a typo. I couldn’t figure out if my eyes had glazed over and I missed that page or if I had copied and pasted from the wrong file when I was putting the manuscript into the template.
I went back through the entire book, tidying up, fixing other, minor typos. And here is what I LOVE about Print On Demand publishing.
I uploaded the new files to KDP and within hours, the corrected book was re-published.
Sometimes you screw up and I screwed up. It was not pretty. I was not happy with myself. But the problem was fixable.
The Opposite Problem
I run into so many people who have trouble letting a book go. They choke on hitting the Publish button.
Ya gotta pull the trigger.
You’re going to make mistakes. Nothing is ever perfect. But if you never put your book out there, then it does not help anyone other than you. And it’s definitely not helping you as much as a book should.
Years ago I clipped a little filler article out of a writers’ magazine, The 10 Worst Things That Can Happen to a Manuscript (or something like that). The very worst thing that can happen to a manuscript is that it gets left in the drawer… never sees the light of day, much less gets published. I can’t remember the other nine—I mean, heck, it was so long ago that it is talking about hard copy manuscripts!—but I never forgot that number one sin.
Does my book still give value, even with that one-off page with typos? I certainly hope so.
Did anyone die because I screwed up that passage? No. (However, if you’re writing a manual on brain surgery, have more than one set of editors go through it, please.)
Did I fix it as soon as I found it? Yes.
Am I embarrassed? Yes.
Did I learn something? Yes.
Am I going to kill myself over this? No.
Look, 2020 may be one of the craziest years in recent history. Shit happens. We’re all having trouble focusing and we all might be just a wee bit distracted.
That doesn’t mean we stop doing what we do. It doesn’t mean we abandon our goals. It does mean that we have to cut ourselves a little slack, maybe check our work a bit more closely, and keep doing the best we can.
Whatever it is you want to do, keep on keeping on. We will get through this together. And sometimes, it will take more than one attempt. That’s okay. Fix it, learn from it, get better at it, and move forward. And, for whoever needs to hear this, we all screw up. Cut yourself a little slack.
And… if you’d like to grab a copy of my **NEW & IMPROVED** 8 Step Marketing Plan, click the link and yes… of course that’s an affiliate link. I get a little extra bump if you buy through that link. Thank you!