Writing the book is only half the journey. Writers whose business education got left out after the fifth creative writing class often get left with a manuscript in one hand and a shrug with the other hand. Where do I go? What is this publishing world? Then as they read the "rags to riches" stories or hear them from fellow writers, their heads fill up with images of dancing dollar bills and red-carpet congratulations. Soon they prepare to quit those nine-to-five jobs and go forth and conquer the literary world.
So, as a denizen of said literary world, I want you to know that writing and novel writing and books all sorts of literary pleasures have their ups and downs. Getting published or accepted to be published is just on small peak or step toward the end goal -- success. Mind you success means many different things to different people. Once you've managed to get past the proverbial literary guard and have a book actually published, realize this journey is not complete ... not even close.
Next comes marketing, public relations and promotion. Ah, now we've hit the area where most who love the quill start to frown. They like the idea of signing books, yes. They like the idea of selling books, yes. But attracting that audience and doing the necessary and ongoing work to actually win the sale, no so much.
Book marketing is the real battle. It's the point in the journey where the weak give up and the warriors take their quest with honor and sword. When you're a warrior you know you have to keep talking to people who can sell your books (bookstores) or organization that can sell your books. You know you have to get out there and promote and use all strategies to your best advantage (social media, blogging and otherwise). You know you have to keep the armor safely on for the merciless critics who not all think your the book of the month club winner. You have to prepare for the worst and sign relief with the best.
But don't be fooled. Writing your book is step one. Publishing and promoting are the real challenges -- and only the worthy with the thickest skin win.