Are you an expert in your field? Have you ever thought about writing a book to share your expertise? If you have, and you’re not a professional writer, then you probably need someone like Rebecca Camarena. More than just an editor, she helps people with every step of the book writing/publishing process. Here’s how she does it.
Tell us about your business. Please include what you do, when you started your own business, and why.
I’m a book coach and editor. I have been working with authors for the last ten years guiding them through all the steps of self-publishing (writing, editing, publishing and marketing). I started my business doing book publicity and then gradually moved into editing and book coaching. It was hard to see authors being taken advantage of by many unscrupulous places and people. I’m a hands-on person providing one-on-one attention to all my clients. I always provide honest feedback and work until the client is satisfied. It’s a satisfying experience when they hold that book in their hands.
What has been your biggest struggle in launching your business/career?
I think the biggest struggle has been mindset. I always worked for someone else in Corporate America and was told what to do. Now, that I’m the boss it’s up to me to figure out what I want, what direction I want to go in, and how to get there. There is no one else to rely on. It’s all on me. But it comes with satisfaction knowing that the end result is helping authors publish their books. The single drawback about working in a company of one is that there is no one else at the Christmas party.
How are you overcoming that obstacle?
Each day I welcome new challenges and continue to raise expectations for myself. I am constantly learning and reaching out to those who have more expertise than I do. By holding myself to higher expectations, I can help my clients with more of their needs.
What’s surprised you the most about working for yourself?
I’m really surprised at how eager I am to learn, grown, and challenge myself. I have always been a self-starter, but if anyone had told me how much fun it would be working for me, I would have tried it years ago.
What’s your favorite part of this kind of work?
My passion is writing and editing. My degree is in English Literature. I love how the words flow on a page. I’m fascinated by how twenty-six letters of the English alphabet can make so many stories. While it can be a struggle sometimes to get the words to flow on the page, when they do come together it’s like fitting together the pieces of a puzzle.
Is there any one event/moment that helped you move from starting your own business to making a living with your own business?
I’m a service-based business, and the pivotal part of my business was getting clients. Rather than constantly be on the search for new clients, I decided to offer more services. Up to this point, I had been strictly focusing on helping people market books, so I added in editing, ghostwriting, and publishing. This allow me to work with authors at any stage of the book process. The longer they work with me, the more trust is built between us. Often times, they will refer others to me and come back with their second and third books.
If you could give a new freelance workers/entrepreneurs one piece of advice, what would it be?
Educate yourself on all aspects of your business, including financial, sales, content marketing, and social media. Have annual, quarterly, monthly, and weekly goals in place. Find experts in your field to emulate or hire as a coach. Network with people, build relationships, and provide value to your customers. Focus on your strengths and hire out your weaknesses.
If you could do one thing differently in your career, what would it be?
I wouldn’t judge myself so harshly. I realize I push myself too much to be better, to know more, but sometimes I just need to take a step back and look at how far I have come in being a book coach and at how many authors I have helped. I need to savor the successes.
What’s your favorite kind of work? Why?
I enjoy editing. Writers tend to be overly protective of their words, but as an editor, I can objectively advise and suggest improvements.
What does your work space/office look like?
My work space is a room in my house. It is a blank canvas with white walls and white curtains to bring in as much natural light as possible. I don’t like colors on the walls as it makes the room feel smaller. Since writing is entirely personal, I prefer to add my own touches through pictures and writer objects that make the space feel comforting and allow for creativity.
What does your workday look like?
Sometimes it seems that I work around the clock. I take advantage of any time I can get. If I have to step away during the day, I’m back at the computer at night. I use time blocks for hours, and at least one day a week I devote the entire day to writing. There is a certain amount of detail to everything I do, so it’s difficult to spend thirty minutes on any one thing. Client calls are in the morning or evening. I’m very flexible and understand that sometimes authors have a job and can’t be available during the day. Friday is mostly for administrative work.
What’s your go-to snack when you need one?
I’m so involved in my work that I don’t snack. I make it a point not to bring food into my work space. There’s just too much of a possibility for things to fall on the computer or get the keys greasy.
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
Nothing is impossible. The word itself says, “I’m possible.” No matter your dream, find a way to make it come true. We live in an age where ambition and technology can truly make things happen. Embrace it!
Thank you so much for appearing on my blog – have a blessed day!