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The Long Game or “How To Make A Million With Your Books”

The Long Game or “How To Make A Million With Your Books”

Whatever “game” you’re in, are you in it for the Long Game or the Short Game?

It makes a difference.

In fact, I might say that it makes all the difference.

I’m a big fan of Joanna Penn (and her podcast, The Creative Penn). She interviewed Dean Crawford the other day and she admitted to be playing around with her podcast title (How To Make A Million With Your Books With Dean Crawford) to grab your attention. But the joke was on us: sure, he’s made a million dollars, but it’s been over many (many!) years.

It’s what I like about her podcast: her target audiences are those writers who are in it for The Long Game, the long haul, who aren’t (necessarily) in it for the money, but for the love of words and writing and story telling. Once you realize this about yourself, in whatever field you’re in, then you have The Big Secret.

When you’re in it for the long game, you don’t worry so much that this new tool or fad didn’t work. When your sales tank or a book doesn’t perform as you’d hoped, you know you’ll get it better with the next one. Maybe I’m naive, maybe I’m just too much of a writer’s writer, maybe I just enjoy writing too much to care about “success.” But as I write those words, I realize that’s part of the question: how do you measure success? Do you need to make a million dollars? Sell a million books?

I was a success after I wrote my first book. Everything since then has been the victory lap around the track.*

Would you do it if you didn’t have to? If you didn’t get paid? If you get zero recognition?

Hey, I already do all of that! 😉 I’m one of those writers who can’t not write. I write for so many reasons and only recently has one of them become “to make a career of it.” Frankly, it’s a bit of a new idea for me. The marketer in me is enjoying the challenge, but I sympathize with writers who are in it to make a quick buck.

It’s a simple question: are you in it for the Long Game or the Quick Buck?

Oh, by the way, it’s absolutely possible to make a quick buck in the writing game–just like it is in any game. But then we’re going to get into bigger questions that compare things like What You Do versus Who You Are. Yeah, I won’t even go there.

  1. Long Game?
  2. Quick Buck?

It’s a simple question and you know your answer.

* As I write those words, I fully admit that I’m in it for the writing. I’m A Writer. What can I say?

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