Greetings, Faoii. There’s something we need to talk about before it blows up larger than it already has.
Two days ago I wrote an uplifting or at least solidarity-type post about depression on my Facebook page. Many people (including more than a few Inkshares authors) saw and commented on the post. Almost everyone was incredibly supportive, grateful, or kind. One person, however, said some very infuriating and hurtful things, and I took a stand to show support for people that have had to listen and endure such harmful rhetoric on a regular basis. Dozens of you chose to stand with me. Friends, loved ones, and so many of you wonderful Faoii drove him off of multiple posts using facts, logic, and a fair amount of sarcasm.
Then, within 24 hours, I received this terrible piece of hate mail through a burner e-mail on Inkshares. (I’m sorry for the language. I blurred the worst of it out).
Now, this is the important part. Even though certain parties seem suspicious given the timing and nature of the mail, there is currently no evidence about who this came from, and as such, I am asking that you do NOT confront anyone on the matter. We are better than that. Even if there was evidence we could direct our anger towards, they can’t do anything more than start a smear campaign or throw one-star reviews on Faoii’s Amazon page, anyway. And we are stronger than that, too.
So, be on the lookout, my warriors. We may have to be vigilant if we want to keep from being drowned in lies and slander. But also remember that a poorly written, vitriolic death threat from a petty soul on the internet is just one of the signs that we are starting to be known. I choose to see this as a good sign.
Listen up, Faoii! This is the most exciting missive to date!
Today marks 3 months since publication. 3 Months, Faoii! And look at how far our army has come in that time! But we’re not done yet. More soldiers have been seeking our banner as they hear of our tale, and I expect that to continue as word spreads. But I can’t keep up the recruitment on my own. I need YOUR help to make every one of those numbers up above to rise a little higher. I’ll be putting various links at the bottom of this missive. Follow our banner and support our cause where it suits you, but make sure you don’t put down your sword yet. This fight is far from over. People WILL know us.
Let’s see how much greater we’ll be a month from now. See you then.
Inkshares Link (To send to your friends who want to read excerpts and watch the trailer)
Greetings, Faoii! Exciting update!
Our army’s first major reading is coming up on December 6. This will be The Last Faoii’s first public appearance since the launch party-- and thus the first one I expect for new people to attend. Reviews and orders have grown stagnant, and this might be the perfect thing to get people interested in our fight again. The holidays are coming, and I KNOW that The Last Faoii would make a worthy gift for many people out there-- but they need to know about it, first. Thus, I need YOUR help to spread the word. I’ll be raffling off 3 signed copies of the book at the reading. Come to Beautiful Montana and win one!
At ease, Faoii. This isn’t really an update. Instead, I’m sending out a reminder to all of you other hopeful authors out there who are working for a dream but constantly feeling like you’re just spinning your wheels.
I get it. It’s not easy. It’s exhausting and soul-crushing and painful. It feels like you’re giving everything you have and that you don’t even have dignity anymore after all the times you’ve begged and pleaded and prayed just to get this far. Then you get another rejection or one hurtful comment or the hundredth "seen" notification on your messenger feed that will just sit there without a response for the next six months (assuming that person doesn’t just straight-up unfriend you for being annoying) and you realize that maybe you did have some dignity left-- because it just got crushed a little more. I know you want to give up. I know how hard this is.
Don’t. Don’t give up, okay? Because some part of you still thinks that this is worth it-- that’s the part that keeps convincing you to send out one more DM, one more Tweet. That’s the part that keeps encouraging you to write one more sentence. Sometimes only a single word, but it tells you to keep going. And that’s the part that people are going to see and respond to. Don’t let it die.
If you follow my Facebook or my blog, you probably know that I’ve been feeling pretty burnt out lately. Blades, my last blog post might have been a full-on mental breakdown. And I kept asking myself the entire time "who can blame me for giving up here?" After battling armies on all sides during the crowdfunding phase of things, I thought this entire book thing would get easier. But then I fell short of the contest I was going for, my health failed terribly at the end of my campaign, and I didn’t have any idea how hard marketing would be. Trying to get people to review or even share posts about your book is an insane battle all on its own, and you start to doubt yourself. Maybe no one is sharing because I’m not a good enough friend. Maybe I really can’t write. Maybe this entire dream was stupid. It’s mind numbing and heart-wrenching and terrible.
And it’s wrong.
I’m sorry I forgot that, Faoii. I’m amazed that it took the help of others to remind me of what I’m fighting for. What we’re all fighting for. But today I got an amazing letter from a fellow Inkshares author that you should definitely follow. And I (for probably the millionth time) got more encouragement than I deserve from this Inkshares friend who has picked me up and dusted me off after every single fall thus far. (Make sure to follow him, too--of everyone I know, none are more deserving of happiness than he is). And between the two of them, I remembered something that I tried so hard to put into words when I was writing an entire book that it’s ridiculous that I might forget it myself.
Keep going. We forget sometimes that even our hardest moments can be beacons of light for others. Standing to face our demons can sometimes give someone else just enough courage to rise against theirs. Facing and overcoming challenges means proving to others that it CAN be done. And so, while we face our own challenges in hopes of overcoming them and forging ahead to our own future-- do not forget that by rising up, you may also be helping others to do the same. This book is greater than you, now, and has been since the first day you chose to put yourself out in front of the world and declare it worthy.
I know it’s hard, these demons you face on and off your book’s platform. But, whatever you’re going through--don’t be afraid to tell the world that it’s happening. Some might come to your aide (and hopefully many will), but if they don’t-- that might be because they just needed someone else to be strong for a while. You can be that person without ever knowing it.
Did you notice the date? The Last Faoii came out one month ago today! Raise your mugs, Faoii. We’ve create something amazing together!
We’re still sitting pretty at 20 reviews on Amazon. This is good, Faoii. This is very good for a debut novel that didn’t even qualify for full funding. However, I want to look forward to the holidays that are coming up in a few months. The Last Faoii would make a great gift for people of various ages and backgrounds, and I want it to be available to those who might want to give it. But that will only happen if we can trigger the Amazon algorithm and thus get it to show up when people browse. So I’m beseeching you again, Faoii, to leave a review. It takes a few seconds. You can leave a one-word review if that’s what you want. But please help me. The army can only grow if everyone helps to push the line.
Updates, Faoii! Listen up!
I want to show you a picture. Look at it very carefully, Faoii. Something has changed in the last 24 hours. Take a look:
Do you see it? Here. Let me make it a bit more obvious:
That’s right, Faoii. We’ve surpassed our previous goal of 350 pre-orders and shot right up to 365! That’s amazing! You should be proud of yourselves and the army you’ve helped build.
However, we still only have 15 reviews on Amazon. That means that 4% of people that have purchased this book have rated it. 4%. We can do better than that, Faoii. Kicking over on Amazon’s algorithm is our next major goal in this campaign. It is the only way we can move forward from here. You’ve stood behind me this long-- don’t put down that blade yet.
It’s been one week since publication day and I’m still so pleased with how everything is going with The Last Faoii. Our launch party was an incredible success and I still can’t believe how many people came out to support our efforts. But then I remembered that I raised an army to make this book happen and I couldn’t very well be surprised, could I?
One week after publication and The Last Faoii’s Amazon page has nine reviews. This is the next hill we have to take on this battlefield, Faoii, and I’m telling you now-- we will take it. I know how nearly-impossible it is to get reviews on Amazon. There are amazingly talented authors here on Inkshares that have sold thousands of books and haven’t bee able to garner enough ratings to trip the algorithm. So what chance could our campaign have?
Well, those books don’t have an army full of Faoii, do they?
We’re going to make this happen, Faoii. I know we will. But I need your blade again. After you read the story, head over to Amazon and tell me (and eventually the world) what you thought. That’s the only way we can ever fight our way out of obscurity.
And I refuse to remain in obscurity. We are Faoii, after all.
Keep those shields up.