Your Authorpreneur Mindsets
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As an indie author, you are also an entrepreneur. If you haven’t been in business before, you need a different mindset to be successful. In this episode, I talk about the Authorpreneur Mindset, which ones you need to look at and some ideas on how to change them.
0:00 This week’s episode
0:28 Welcome to the Podcast
1:22 Why Our Mindset is Important
3:05 The Authorpreneur Mindsets
3:13 1- Job Mindset
14:50 2 – Money Mindset
20:00 3 – Success Mindset
21:32 4 – Productivity Mindset
25:02 5 – Change Mindset
28:48 Changing your Mindsets
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Transcript – Episode 20
Hey fellow Indie authors! Welcome to this episode of the Indie Author Biz Guide Podcast. As an indie author, you are also an entrepreneur. You may not have been in business before this, and if you haven’t, you need to make sure your mind sets are in place for your author business to be successful. In this episode, I talk about what some of those authorpreneur mindsets are.
Welcome to the Indie Author Biz Guide Podcast. I’m Tora Moon, genre bending fantasy and sci fi author, indie business author, and entrepreneur. Here we talk about the business of self-publishing, or as I prefer to call it, indie publishing. As an indie author, you have entered the wonderful world of entrepreneurship.
On this show, I guide you through the Rocky waters of the indie publishing industry.I share business basics and principles you can apply to your author business, really, any business. You can download your free indie author business checklist, find additional resources, and the shownotes at Indie Author Biz Guide dot com. And now, here’s today’s episode.
Why Our Mindset is Important
Most successful entrepreneurs look at what their mindsets are and do work on those. As an authorpreneur, an author who is also an entrepreneur, you also need to look at your mindsets to make sure they are supporting your business and not unconsciously sabotaging it. Your mindsets and beliefs affect the success of your business and of your writing. Our mindsets are the internal programing of our brains.
They arise from what we believe. Quite often, those beliefs are unconscious or they’re beliefs that we were raised with. In Human Design, that would be called beliefs that we were conditioned.
When we have our own business it’s imperative for us to evaluate our beliefs, to make sure we’re doing everything we can to make our business successful. We can do all the marketing and put all of those efforts in place, but if our money mindset isn’t supporting that, and in fact, sabotaging that, we can do all the marketing in the world. We can place all the ads that we want and still not be able to sell our books because our beliefs about money and our beliefs about success are sabotaging us instead of supporting us. There are several mindsets that we need as authorpreneurs.
The Authorpreneur Mindsets
1. Job Mindset
One of the first ones is our job mindset, and this is our belief in how we make money. You may have been raised in a family like I was that the standing belief was a job –a 9 to 5 job where you go out and work for somebody else– is how you make money. And it’s the only way of making money.
Recently, I talked to my niece about this, that she wants to be making money. Her kids are getting older, not at home all the time, but she doesn’t want to go out and get a job. And I’m telling her there’s lots of different ways of making money, of being an entrepreneur that isn’t going out and getting a job.
And an area that I see quite often in people, whether they’re an author or in some other business, when they’re making that switch from a wage earner and having a job to entrepreneur, is that mindset about how they make and earn their money.
As a wage earner, doesn’t matter if you’re a CEO of a business and it’s not your business, you are a wage earner. You are going to that job. You’re reporting to that job. It could be 9 to 5, it could be other hours. You’re putting in your time and you’re getting paid a salary, you’re putting in your hours and you’re getting paid a paycheck. You’re trading your time for dollars. And for most, that’s stable. You know you’re going to work 40 hours, you get paid X amount per hour. You’re going to earn this much in your paycheck for that week or whatever the frequency you get paid on.
As an entrepreneur, that security doesn’t exist. As an entrepreneur and as an authorpreneur, you have to be okay with not getting money at a set frequency. You need to have that mindset and change that mindset that you are exchanging something of value for money. You’re not exchanging your time for money.
For authors, our exchange of value is the books that we write. Fiction, that is giving people entertainment, which is very valuable. We learned that during the pandemic of how valuable that entertainment is, of being able to escape what’s going on in the world. f you’re writing nonfiction, the value is the problem that you’re solving for your reader or that inspiration of the challenges that you overcame or the excitement of your travel and seeing and experiencing new things. All of that is valuable. Nonfiction, you’re also teaching people how to do something new. If you’re writing a knitting book, my Indie author guides are teaching people how to publish, how to indie publish and have an indie publishing business. So we’re exchanging something of value for money, not our time, which a wage earner does.
And in this new way of thinking as an entrepreneur and having an entrepreneur mindset about your job is understanding that it doesn’t come in every week or every month like clockwork, like your wage does. Especially with authors, we may have really high months and really low months. And it may be we have a really good year and a not so good year.
Our job mentality, and our mentality about managing our money as an entrepreneur, needs to be that, okay, we’ve got to save and not just spend all of our money that we get when we have a feast. We need to save for those times when our sales take a nosedive and we’re at a famine state. Very rarely is any entrepreneur business going, up, up, up, up all the time. There’s going to be ups, and it’s going to hit a plateau and maybe go down a little bit, then go up again. It’s an artificial growing up, up, up, up and never going down.
And part of this job mindset, and I’m talking a lot about this one because it is so important, especially when you’re entering entrepreneurialship for the first time, which many new authors are doing. Not all, but there are many new authors, who have a job and are writing and want to make their author business as their primary business. Now’s the time to be working on that job mentality.
Part of that job mentality is having a boss. When you go to a job, you have a boss. Even if you’re a CEO, your boss is your shareholders, if it’s a public company. I was a CFO, my boss was the CEO, his boss was the corporation’s board and the shareholders.
When you have a job, there’s usually someone over you that’s telling you what to do. That may be taking on responsibilities, that what you do and your decisions, meh, they’re okay. As an entrepreneur, there’s nobody over you. You are that boss and the buck stops with you. A bad decision… can’t blame it on an employee. You can’t blame it on a coworker. You can’t blame it even on your supervisor or your boss. It’s all on you.
That’s part of that mentality and that mindset you need to shift that you’re okay with that. If you’re not able to accept responsibility for your decisions, good or bad, it might be a good thing to rethink whether you want to be an indie author or not. Maybe the traditional route would be better for you. And I’m very much an advocate of being an indie. However, it isn’t right for all people.
Looking at your mindsets can help you determine whether going down this indie path is right for you or not. Whether you need to pursue that traditional route or a hybrid route or something else, or not even get into this and just write for fun.
And as part of being your own boss, you get to set your own hours. You can decide if you’re going to treat your author business as a job and show up 9 to 5. I know from things that I’ve heard from, like Mark Dawson, he treats his writing as a job. He has set hours. Monday through Friday, 8 p.m., he shows up at his office to write. He writes until lunch. After lunch, he spends time doing his marketing and other business activities. That’s right for him.
Me, I’m more spontaneous than that. I do write almost every day. It may not be the same thing because I write a lot of different things. Under your Clifton Strengths, that’s my input and ideation coming into play. I can’t write the same thing every day. Just like oh… It gives me anxiety to do that. I like being able to work on different projects, which means as an entrepreneur, that’s really good for me because I like working on different projects. I like having that say, “Okay, what’s right for me today in this moment to be working on?” I’m always moving forward. It just may not look like what everybody else’s forward does, and that’s okay. It’s my business.
I like having that freedom of today I’m going to take my laptop and go up into the mountains and write and work there, or go to a coffee shop and work there. You can’t always do that if you’re a wage earner. As your own employer, that job mentality and that job mindset, means you need to be able to push yourself to work when you need to. You won’t have somebody else say, Hey, did you show up to work today? Did you put in your 8 hours today? That’s all up on you.
And as authors, let’s clear up a little myth right now. Being a full time author does not mean you are writing 8 hours a day. If you’re dictating, your voice is going to give out.If you’re typing, your wrists are going to give out if you do that 8 hours straight.
As a full time author, think of it as you’re a full time authorpreneur. You are writing and creating your product, but you are also marketing that product. You are selling that product. You are developing other products. Part of your writing process and being a full time author is thinking about the next book and playing with those ideas so that when you finish this one, you’ve already got some ideas on this book that you’re working on. You may find that your process is you write one book, send it out to your beta readers, and while it’s at the beta readers, you are planning the next book. When the book comes back from your beta readers, you make those changes and send it out to your editor. While that book is at editor, you’re writing that book that you planned while your first book was at your beta readers. And you have this rolling thing to where you’re working on something different and at a different stage, at different books. Or you may be one who is I can only think about one book at a time. That’s okay.
There’s no one right way to do this. There’s only the way that’s right for you.
2. Money Mindset
So mindset number two that you need to look at as an authorpreneur is your money mindset. And this is what you believe about money and your ability and worthiness to make it.
Yeah. How do you think about money? When you think about money, what is the first thing that comes up for you? Think about it. Is the first thing that comes up to you: Money is evil. Money is dirty. Money is the root of all evil.
If those come up for you, there is no effin way you will ever succeed in your business because your money mindset is sabotaging you all the time.
If you believe that money is evil and money is dirty, you are not going to make money. Your subconscious is going to say, “Oh, no, no, no, that’s evil, that’s dirty. I can’t have that!” And you will not do the things you need to do to sell your book. You won’t place the ads you need to place. You won’t do the market research. Because you’re being sabotaged, because you can’t make money, because money is evil and it is dirty.
Personally, I love money. Money is energy, and I love what money can do. And what money can do for me. It’s taken me some time because I was raised in one of those environments where I heard my mother say, “Oh, having wealth is gross.” That was the term she used. So it’s taken me a lot of work to change my mindset and my belief about money so that it isn’t gross, that it’s actually amazing and wonderful.
One of the best books that I have read and worked with for changing my money mindset is Tapping into Wealth by Margaret M Lynch and I will put the name of the book in the show notes. It uses EFT or tapping as a way to delve into your mindsets and beliefs about money and wealth, and to clear them and to put in new ones.
And I really love tapping as a way of changing our mindsets, which we’ll get into in just a minute. But I wanted to share this book. I adore it. I have had quantum leaps of change in working through this book. Highly, highly recommend it.
One of the money mindsets is how much money do you believe you deserve? Is that $50,000? Is that $100,000? Is that $300,000? Do you deserve a million? I know the ego may say, “Oh, I want $1,000,000!”
But feel into your body. Remember the episode about Human Design and using that your authority and using your body to tell you because your mind can’t. And that was episode 15. Feel in your body when you say, “I deserve X amount. I deserve to make X amount. I deserve to make $1,000,000.”
How does that feel in your body? Does your body go, “Whoa, that’s a lot of money, I can’t do that. Oh, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no.” If your body feels like that, your mind can say, and you could do affirmations for the next hundred years, “I make $1,000,000 a year.” If your body is going, “Oh, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no.” Your belief is, “Oh, no, no, no, no. I’m not worth that. I can’t make that much money. Ooo no!” You’re not going to be able to make the money that you want.
And that’s part of what she goes into on this in this book, Tapping into Wealth, is looking at that belief of how much money you’re worth and that you deserve to have. And then she says to take that amount and double it, and then go, “whoa.” And do the work, the inner work, to find out why you believe that.
3. Success Mindset
Number three is your success mindset. And this is how we believe and what we believe about success and failure. Do you believe you deserve to succeed? Do you believe that your books deserve to be a bestseller? And we’re not talking bestseller on getting those letters. When I’m talking bestseller, are you selling a lot of books? I love the saying that the people from Wide for the Win have, “Bank over rank.” And so your best seller is, how much money is your book making you.
Do you deserve to have a bestseller book that’s making you a lot of money? Feel into that into your body and what does your body feel? How do you really feel about that? And you can use the tapping to go into that and really go into, how do I feel about this?
Do I deserve to fail? Have I had failures in the past? And therefore, I have the belief that all I’m meant to do is fail. Everything that I try is going to fail.
I had that belief for a while and I’ve had to really work hard on changing that belief and that mindset for me to succeed at what I’m doing now.
4. Productivity Mindset
Mindset number four is your productivity mindset. It kind of goes along with one, which is our job mindset. Our productivity mindset is how we believe we work.
And this is one that we need to pay attention to. Doing a log and doing a time log of how we spend our time writing and how we spend our time in our day in our business, can give us some really clues. Because we may believe that we can sit down and write for 2 hours. But maybe for us it’s better to write in 20 minute sprints.
This is one of those mindsets and those beliefs that we need to test on ourselves and try different things and find what is the best way for us, because we can’t just do what everybody else is doing. Because we aren’t everybody else. We need to find what’s right for us.
Do you believe that you have to write 5000 words a day to be a productive writer? That’s a mindset. And if you don’t meet that 5000 word limit that somebody out there said that the ideal, then you’re a failure. Do you believe that? And if you’re not reaching that 5000, how is that making you feel? How is that affecting your writing? Do you need to change that mindset? So that, “Oh, for me, writing 2000 words a day is good.” Or maybe for you it’s 500 words a day.
And changing that mindset that that’s okay for you, you are still making progress. 500 words day for 30 days is 15,000 words. You can write a 45,000 word novel in three months at only 500 words a day. If that’s all you have, all you can do, that’s okay. And that’s changing your productivity mindset to be okay with what’s right for you, not this some arbitrary number.
So what if Stephen King does 5000 words a day? He isn’t you. He doesn’t have the same life circumstance you have.
I caregive for my elderly parents. My time is not always my own. Some days I can write a lot. Some days I can’t because I’ve taken them to doctors or helping them stand up after they’ve fallen on the floor. I’m going up and checking on them to make sure they’re okay throughout the day.
You may have small children. You may have a job. Your productivity mindset needs to be reflective of your life situation and what’s right for you.
5. Change Mindset
So number five is, do you have a change of mindset? And this is what we believe about change. If you have the mindset of, everything’s written in stone, that nothing changes, that change is bad.
Those mindsets are going to affect your writing. They’re going to affect your business. Because things change in the indie publishing business all the time.
New technologies are coming out like the AI that everybody’s talking about right now. New ways of selling our books, like Kickstarter or subscription models. Kickstarter has just been catapulted because of Brandon Sanderson and his amazing Kickstarter campaign, which brought the whole idea of selling books directly to your readers in a launch campaign. He helped bring that to the consciousness of readers as well as to authors. That is a change. How are you adapting and using that change?
Writing itself. You rarely, unless you do a lot of pre writing and mental writing and writing in your head, and even then you rarely write it once and done. That it never changes. No, writing is really rewriting and really refining what you want to say and how you want to say that.
And having a mindset of being open to change allows you to see opportunities as they present themselves. It allows you to look in the industry of what’s happening and say, “Ooh, ooh, this subscription model is looking really interesting. How can I add that to my business? Or ooh, serialization is starting to do well again.” We talked about serialization in episode 19 and where actually comes from. And with that attitude and that mindset of, Oh, change. Change is a good thing. You can look at that and say, Oh, maybe that’s what I want to do.
Part of understanding our mindset is understanding and knowing ourselves. If you know yourself, like in Clifton Strenghts, I have a very high futuristic. I’m always looking to the future. I’m looking at what’s going on and I’m rarely looking at the past. That’s like way down in my Clifton strengths.
Understanding if you are an early adopter, if you like, being on the leading edge. I like being on the leading edge. That’s why I write the type of stories that I write. Or are you more comfortable and you like doing the same thing. Understanding yourself and what works for you is going to help you in your writing and help your business succeed.
Changing your Mindsets
How do we find out what our mindsets are and change?
I already talked about EFT and tapping with the Tapping into Wealth book. Highly recommend it. So the tapping is a really good way of changing your mindsets. It works with your energetic meridian system. There’s some scientific evidence behind this.
I use it all the time and you can use it for any mindset. You can use it for just about anything once you learn how to do the EFT.
Journal or Meditation
One of my most helpful methodologies to not only discover what my mindsets are, but to help change them, is through journaling. And that also relates to meditation. Either one or both, I do both, is asking those questions.
What do I really believe about money? What are my beliefs about money? What are my beliefs about success? What are my beliefs about my productivity and how I write?
And ask that question and then go into that meditative state. Take some deep breaths, closing your eyes, just focusing on your breath. Having that question in the back of your mind and then allowing that answer to come up.
Journal about it. Write about, what do I believe? What? What did I hear about success and money when I was growing up? And journal about it and write about it. We’re writers. Write about that.
That may give you, if you’re a memoir writer or a nonfiction writer, going into those memories of your money mindsets, and your success mindsets. All of that may give you good ideas for a book. Just saying…
When you’re journaling about it, going in and reliving those experiences and then tapping about it.
Affirmations work really well. When you’re doing an affirmation, put it in a positive, present tense. I have wealth. I am wealthy. And the key for an affirmation to work is being able to imagine and feel that is truth. If you just say I make $200,000 from my writing and there’s no emotion behind that, it’s just words that you’re saying.
But when you add that emotion of like, Oh, what can I do with $200,000? What does that mean if I’ve made $200,000 from my writing? Ooh… How many people’s lives have I touched with my writing if I’ve made $200,000? Ooh, I’ve entertained that many people or I’ve changed that many people’s lives and helped that many people with their problem that I’m writing about. Ooh, I’ve helped X number of writers become indie authors and be successful in their business. Ooh, I really like that. Yeah. Ooh. And if you’ve added those feelings to that, that you’re feeling that how it really feels to be making $200,000 from your writing and what that really means.
Even me talking about that right now, I’m feeling that energy and I’m like, Oh yeah!
And now I can do those things and take that inspired action to make that a reality. That’s part of what affirmations do is bring it to your consciousness and into your subconsciousness of opportunities to look for, of things that you can do to make that a reality. And that when you get that inspired action, that’s what Abraham Hicks calls your inspired action, you take it because you’ve been thinking about it. Now it’s come into your realm of reality and you can take those steps to do that.
Listening to motivation speech or videos
And that leads into listening to motivational speeches or videos. I love listening to Abraham Hicks and her speaking about the Law of Attraction. That helps me change my mindsets. That helps me to be in a higher vibration to change my life and to be a better person, to be better in my writing.
Another method that I use and that I really like is learning. There are quite a few people who talk about mindset, money mindset, success mindset, manifestation, all sorts of different mindsets. Listen to those people who have those types of podcasts or read those types books and learn those methods and try them, because not every method is going to work for you.
These methods are ones that have worked for me. They may work for you. The only way you will know is if you try them. Some may be way too much Woo for you. That’s okay. You can do something else.
I think journaling is one of those that’s very mainstream. Highly recommend the book, I know it’s older now–still has validity, is The Artist’s Way, Julia Cameron. That is changing that mindset of being an artist, being a writer, rather than just thinking about being a writer, now you’re doing things to become that writer. You’re doing things to become that author, that published author, and having that author business.
Knowing Yourself (Human Design & Clifton Strengths)
And one of the last ways, and the one that I’m totally fascinated and I absolutely love is getting to know yourself. And the two methods that I highly recommend, and I absolutely love, is your Human Design and your Clifton Strengths.
Your Human Design will help you know how you make decisions, how you use your energy, where your life purpose is. It can help in so many ways of your life. It can help how you interact with people. You can use Human Design with your characters when you write fiction.
The second one is Clifton Strengths, and I’ve been learning about that from Becca Syme. She has a QuitCast on YouTube that I highly recommend that she talks about your Clifton Strengths. She talks about them in her Write Better-Faster Course, which is very good. I took it and it’s very good.
You can take the Clifton Strengths assessment, and I will have a link for that in the show notes. You can do the top five for like 20 bucks or get all 34, I think it’s got up to $59 now, and finding out what your strengths are and what are your weaknesses, the ones that are down there. Those can really help you in your author business and in your writing.
And it can help you know your mindsets, know what you believe, how you work and what’s right for you. And that’s what both of these methods primarily are to know yourself and what is right for you. Because that’s the only way you’re going to succeed in your author business is doing what’s right for you and your business.
These were just some examples of the mindsets that affect our writing and our author business that we need to examine as part of our continuing education as authorpreneurs.
And I’ve given you a few ideas of how to change those mindsets. When we have mindsets and beliefs that support our business and our writing, we are more likely to succeed. We aren’t fighting our subconscious. We aren’t unconsciously sabotaging ourselves. We are doing those things to promote our business. We’re doing those things to succeed in a way that’s right for us.
In my Book Doula coaching, which is for people who need help in planning and writing their books, fiction and nonfiction, I include working with your mindsets and doing those things to change those and find out what your mindsets are. I use both Human Design and the Clifton Strengths in my coaching because I feel it is so important that you do what’s right for you, and these are methods to help determine that and not just go, Oh, well, Tora told me to do it, so it must be right. Well, maybe not.
We’re each individual. Our author businesses are individual, and we need to choose and do that which is right for us. And I know I say that a lot, but it’s something that I really believe. That we can’t just take, “Oh, 5000 words, that’s my path to success.” For some people, yes. For others, no.
Any of the things that I’m sharing in this podcast is test it, try it, find out if it works for you and your business or not. If it doesn’t, you’ve learned something. If it does, awesome.
I hope this episode has helped you with your authorpreneur mindsets and given you some food for thought of which ones you need to examine and look at more deeply and the ones that you may need to change. Hope to see you on the next episode.
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