What to Do When Your Support System is Small

The decision to publish a book is a huge ambition, and if you're a first time writer, one of the main questions you may find yourself asking is, "What if no one likes my book?" It's certainly a question I've heard before. Let's face it, your decision to write a book and pursue publishing was made because of a message that you passionately believe in. Whether you've written a bone-chilling thriller, a sweet romance, an inspirational self-help book or a devotional; you believe in your words and believe it will touch the heart of your reader too. But, what happens when you share your book idea to someone close to you and they either belittle it, don't understand it, and feel like you shouldn't publish it?

I want to say that may sound a little far-fetched to some, but the truth is, this is a very common challenge that many of you may understand. In all honesty, when I first started writing, I didn't have a full cheerleading squad behind me either. In fact, a family member who's not quite a fiction lover, did not love the idea of me writing fiction. He had his preferences, which I respected, but I realized I couldn't allow his opinion  to stop me from moving forward with what I believe I was to do, no matter how good his intentions may have been to him. I had to follow my own dreams and continue writing what was on my heart to write.

When we think of our close family and friends, it's natural to think of very supportive people; people who will buy twenty copies and sell them at their jobs, or pass out flyers-- potentially becoming our "street team." But honestly, in many (or most) cases, this just doesn't happen. Some family and friends only support you from a distance, and won't even purchase a copy. It's a sad reality. 

So, what if you go through this experience? How are we to properly respond when we don't have immediate support? There are a few things I've learned that I believe may be helpful to you:

  1. Respectfully, continue to move forward despite their lack of support: I believe moving forward with a positive attitude is always best. Getting too upset about it will only create an even bigger issue, which could potentially hurt your relationships. Respectfully stand firm on your decision to write and publish your book, and don't let anyone influence you to stop pursuing your dream.
  2. Pursue a community of true supporters: Sometimes support comes from unlikely places. You may be looking for your "tribe" of supporters in those closest to you, but you may be pleasantly surprised to know that many of your supporters may come from other writing creatives like you. Consider joining a writing group, an author support group, or connect with a book club or library club. 
  3. Let your purpose lead the way: Most inspirational authors have very rich meaning behind their words. We write to share hope, help others, and be an example of what it looks like to follow your dreams. Don't let lack of support distract you from the purpose of writing and publishing your book. Think of your readers, and allow your desire to inspire them lead you!

Tell us a little about your support system. Do you have a tribe who supports and follows your writings? How did you find them? 


About the Author:

Kennisha Thornton is the President and CEO of NyreePress Literary Group. She is also the author of five inspirational and Christian-based fiction and non-fiction books. She enjoys helping authors pursue their dream of getting published, and sharing hope with their platforms. She is a Public Speaker, Literary Coach and Philanthropist. She and her four littles live in DFW, Texas.

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