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What 2021 Looks Like for Autumn Stone Romance

Autumn Stone Romance 2021
Posted by Autumn Stone
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I’m going to be honest and say that 2020 was a dumpster fire for my business. I had so many plans, so many ideas and then nothing went the way that I’d planned. The sports romance series that I published? It crashed and burned. Ironically, the series took place at the Olympics. Guess what didn’t happen last year? The Olympics. The pre-orders that I had scheduled but lost the motivation to write and kept pushing back? They didn’t get published. However, when I look back at 2020 there are some great lessons and takeaways that I’m going to share in this episode. Listen on.

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Show Notes

  • Going into 2020 I had a publishing plan for my fiction and non-fiction books.
  • I’m a pretty fast writer so I knew that I could get the work done, I was energized and ready to go.
  • Then COVID hit.
  • My motivation dried up, my ability to go to the mountains and hike was affected because of lockdowns, and I found myself sitting in my house for 3 months under lockdown here in Denver.
  • The one strange thing that happened over the course of the year was that other parts of my online business grew significantly and so I decided to stop pushing myself to produce creative content when my heart just wasn’t in it.
  • If you’re listening to this episode and you’re an author who didn’t increase your book income last year-you’re not alone. But, I did leave 2020 with some great insight into what not to do and am excited to share what 2021 has in store for Autumn Stone Romances


  • It pains me to say that I’m now used to the dumpster fire that is the current US approach to the COVID pandemic. What that means is, I’ve figured out how to work productively during this time.
  • Also, I’m able to enjoy the activities that get my creative juices flowing again. That sounds funny now that I say it out loud.
  • Currently, I have been hit with a 1 year block on my Amazon account for preorders. As a result of this I had to really rethink my preorder strategy.
  • At the same time, i had begun really thinking about how to create a sustainable platform that I own that would elevate my brand and not rely on someone else’s platform. Basically, I wanted to create a definitive space for my brand and for other authors of who wrote stories that uplifted romance stories of all types that featured POC characters.
  • So, I launched this podcast and honestly, this was one of the best decisions that I’ve made in my business. I absolutely love the conversations that I’m having with other authors and I love create a unique to my brand platform. This is a strategy that I would recommend for anyone serious about growing their brand and protecting their ability to generate sales outside of someone else’s platform.
  • I’m incredibly excited to work on the show and hope you’ll enjoy hearing from the different authors who share their expertise, successes and epic fails on the show.
  • I love the preorder strategy but I will no longer launch it unless I have my books pretty much written and ready to publish from day one. Typically, my goal is to write 3-6 book series. If I’m launching a 3 book series all 3 books need to be done. If I’m launching a 6 book series at least 4 books will have to be done moving forward. Basically, I learned this the hard way.
  • I’m so freaking excited about the different series that I’m launching this year. March is when I plan on publishing the first book of my next series.
  • Last year I also decided to launch a second pen name in the Reverse Harem space. I felt like there were stories that I wanted to write featuring at least one Black or Brown lead character. And, there just aren’t a lot of reverse harem stories featuring people who like me. In fact, my conversation with Quirah Casey confirmed that I was on the right track. She’s a POC author of reverse harem books. I’ve included a link below to listen to her episode. Those plans also circled down the drain of good intentions. I’m happy to announce that I will begin publishing those books as well. In case you’re wondering why I don’t publish these books under my Autumn Stone pen name-they are two very different audiences of readers.
  • I also plan on attending the Interracial Romance Author Expo in April. I’m really excited to meet other authors in person. I’ll be the author with a mask on.

Final Thoughts

It’s really easy to be disheartened after a year like 2020. It has been rough. But, even though my author business dipped, the other parts of my business grew significantly. And, I should mention that I’ve read numerous stories of authors who kicked ass in 2020.

My Key Takeaways from 2020

  • Pivot your strategy when your situation changes
  • Pay attention to the lesson that you’re supposed to learn about your business.
  • Understand that every business has its ups and downs.
  • Grow your email list and email your list at least twice a week.
  • Always market your books. I’ve realized that I need to focus on marketing every single day. There are authors who are always marketing their backlists. I see their ads, etc. all of the time.
  • Know your numbers! Figure out what it takes to earn whatever you would like to earn a day/week/month/year. It’s likely that you’re going to need fewer readers than you think.
  • Avoid being a victim-I belong to a number of author groups. I’ve noticed authors of color wasting their time on the following ideas (even when the frustration IS valid) Because these thoughts are distraction to their business.
    • Other authors make more than POC authors
    • There aren’t any readers for my genre
    • Comparisons between yourself and what other authors are doing.
    • You have to spend money to make money. This is true but I’ve made thousands of dollars without spending a lot of money in the beginning of my author business. Don’t get stuck on investing money on a strategy that isn’t working. Or, at least reach out to get a professional who can help you with what isn’t working.

Let me know what you’re reading and writing this year. I’m adding to my to be read list!

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