So the one thing I have to remind myself over and over about is that success does not happen over night. Not even for authors with big name publishers. There's a lot of work, networking, marketing, a lot of everything that goes into success. The problem I'm seeing around social networking are authors who insist that they are entitled to success. They want it over night, they deserve it over night, because they are so much better than the thousands indie authors struggling out there. Sure there are authors who can drop hundreds of dollars on ads, hiring a marketing person, and using every possible resource to their advantage, but let's face it. Not all of us have that kind of money.
What we need to remember is to have patience. I'm not saying don't do any marketing, because that's not going to help the matter. But be smart about it. Explore your avenue, be open to trying new things. I've talked to several authors who have been indie authors for three years and they are doing great. It helps that they have a great product. Do your research, for example, did you know there is an algorithm on amazon that you can use to your advantage? You get the best change of being seen if you publish something every thirty days, your chances are lowered if you post something every sixty days, and after ninety days you drop out of their algorithm and start all over again. Am I suggesting you write crap and threw it up just to take advantage of this? No, no I'm not, because there is enough crap out there already, but start planning on it. Try to get a head of your writing and soon you'll be able to starting putting things up, short stories, novels, novellas, co-written books.
Sit down and write a five year plan, but be reasonable. Put down things that you know will be a challenge, but will be attainable. Set short term and long term goals and deadlines. Stick to them. Don't be afraid of making friends with strangers, network with authors inside and outside your genre. Talk to people and share what you know. Yes writing is a solitary career, but marketing is not done alone. Be personable, don't air your woes and marketing troubles on Facebook. Don't threaten to quit just to get a rise out of fans so that they'll stroke your ego. And most of all...don't give up.
I've come a long way in a year, with both names that I write under, but I know I still have a long way to go. Some days the road seems dark, but then I remind myself. Success doesn't happen over night and it doesn't come without work. We are not entitled to anything.