Amelia Bennett Chronicles

What Genre Was That?

I was inspired to write my first fan mail tonight. I haven’t actually done it yet, because it’s not going to be a glowing email, and I’m not sure if I should send it. I thought the author did an amazing job and I’m already anxiously awaiting the next book in the series and it doesn’t even have a release date yet.

My complaints are with the cover and blurb the publishing house used. They’re horrible and so not worth the book they’re paired with. As a reader I’m appalled at the quality. As a self-publisher I can kind of see where they were coming from.

The book is in a genre that doesn’t really exist yet. It’s urban fantasy but kind of not, too.  I’m sure the only reason the book was published is because the author is so well known.

I’ve found myself with this same problem. The Amelia Bennett Chronicles are fantasy but not just straight fantasy. I end up using the category Contemporary Fantasy. They aren’t urban fantasy and they aren’t high fantasy. They’re…I have no idea. That makes it difficult to do covers, pick fonts, and write blurbs. There’s a lot tied into knowing what genre you’re in and if you don’t it can cause all kinds of problems.

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Episode Five and Six are now LIVE

 

Episode Five

Episode Six

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So I have finally published Episode Five and Episode Six, which means my first season, in the Amelia Bennett Chronicles, is finally finished. Well… not really. I still want to completely redo the covers and I now need to create a box set, which will hopefully end up earning me more money. So even though they’re written and published I’m not yet done.

I will never be done.

Never, ever.

Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

Ok I’m better now.

I’m actually super excited to have them published and, while yes, it is kind of daunting to know that there is still so much work to do, at least the story is out there. And it’s pretty much complete. I, of course, left an opening for more and I’d love to write more, but this story is over so if I die, out of nowhere, no one will be left wondering what happens next. So that’s good.

I’m still taking a break this month on writing and it’s amazing how much I’ve been able to get done. My house isn’t as messy and I’ve taken a three part test to get an online job. I even planted a tree. I’m not sure if I got all that done because I’m not writing or if I would have gotten it done otherwise, but oh well. It’s done and that’s all that matters.

I’ve been trying to plan what I’m going to write next but other than the next episode of Amelia Bennett I’m not feeling anything else. I might just stick with her for a while since I feel inspired to do it. I’ve tried to create an outline but I don’t know if I have enough for an entire season or if I’m just going to do a novella or what’s going to happen. Maybe it will wind up being a fully fledged book.

As you can see I’m not hindered by expectations. Sure I’d probably gain more readers if I actually kept to a method, but who wants to do that? It’s all about what makes me happy, right? I don’t know. For now I’m trying to stick with a six episode season, but we’ll see what happens.

Also…Buy my books. Please. Now. Please. I’ll be your best friend. Maybe.

September 2014 Numbers

Writing Goal:                                                5250

Words Written:                                             6075

Days Didn’t Write but Should Have:          5

# of TV Shows in My Fall Lineup:              24

 

My writing goal this month was not high, I spent most of the month editing. It took longer than I had planned, but I’m finally sending episodes five and six to my editor and I wanted them to be as perfect as I could make them. At this point I flip flop between thinking she’ll probably pay me to edit what few mistakes she finds to just hoping there are a few words left when she’s done.

I kind of like to watch TV, a lot. I’ve already dropped two shows from my Fall lineup so that’s a good thing. Also most of my writing has been sporadic and not focused on one single project. I’ve got more WIPs than I care to admit too, with none of them being close to finished. I really need to pick one and stay with it, but for now I’m trying to just get the words in.

 

Books Sold:                                                    11

Free Downloads:                                           75

 

I had fewer free downloads this month but more sales. I also decided to focus on one retailer and took all but my free book down everywhere but Amazon. I don’t really like putting all of my eggs in one basket, but I have no visibility anywhere else and I prefer to not spread my focus. I’m going to put all of my books in KDP select and we’ll see what happens from there.

I ended up having two people not progress past the second book, which over the life of the series has only happened two other times. Don’t really like that development but my read through rate is still good.

Right now my hope is to have episodes five and six out either later this month or early next month, it depends on when I get them back from the editor and how much work is needed after that.

Episode Six is Out to Beta Readers

Well I just sent Episode Six of the Amelia Bennett Chronicles to my beta readers. I’ve already gone through two rounds of edits and I plan on doing at least another three more read throughs. I’m excited to be so close to the end.

Last time I posted I wasn’t able to afford an editor but because of recent ebay auctions and a contract job I’ve got a little bit of money. Enough that I went ahead and scheduled my editor. So if everything goes all right I will be able to publish around the end of October or early November. WhooHoo!!! So happy!

I have no idea when or what I will be publishing next. I’m in the middle of too many projects and I don’t have anything else to sell to bring in money for edits. Hopefully, now that season one is complete, I will make some more money from book sales. We’ll see. It would be nice to at least break even again.

Ending on a personal note my daughter is turning one in a couple of weeks. She’s already got a ton of teeth in her mouth and she’s been walking for the last four months. It’s amazing to watch her figure things out just from watching us do it. She likes to sit and flip through the pages of her board books, only occasionally chewing on them. I have no idea where she gets that from. The reading books, not the chewing on them. She is pretty incredible, I’m fairly certain she’s a genius, not that I’m biased in any way.

I’m Back!

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Well I’ve been gone for less than a month and while I haven’t gotten everything done that I said I was I don’t feel like everything is crashing down on top of me. The wonderful thing about self-publishing is that I can do things at my own pace. So I don’t have everything up on any other platforms but I do now have Episodes 1, 2, and 3 of the Amelia Bennett Chronicles published on kindle. I have a long list of things that I need to get done and I will get to them but I’m going to cut back on the pressure I’m putting on myself. As much as I would love to be a full-time writer the truth is right now I’m not. This week I put in 40 hours at my “real” job and another 16-18 hours working on writing and publishing. That’s nowhere near what I’ve read some people are doing but that’s enough for me for now.

Ep1Ep2Ep3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

**Update on The Amelia Bennett Chronicles**

Episodes 1, 2, and 3 are published and live as of 01/11/2013 on the kindle platform. It took longer than expected because the holidays slowed down my editor. Instead of the mid to late December she said in her original email she wasn’t able to get to me until last week. I would have loved to have them up at Christmas, and I spent a ton of time checking my email over the holiday just waiting for her, but since I hadn’t scheduled a spot and she was fitting me around other projects I can’t complain. She was amazing! It was so awesome to have someone go in and put the commas and semicolons where they needed to be and catch misspellings of words that are real words that Office didn’t catch. It was a thrill. She even wrote little comments telling me she liked certain spots which was even awesomer (she would edit out this word).

***Update on Book 2 of the Twin Moons of Andove***

I was able to get another couple thousand words written on this. I’m not yet back to the point I was at when I started my rewrites but I’m getting there. I did write out a detailed outline for this book and a rough outline of the one after it. I’ve been feeling really inspired to write on this but haven’t been able to because of the AB Chronicles. Now that the first batch of those episodes are out I can bring my focus back. For now though I do not have a deadline, though I would love to have it published first quarter of the year. We will see.

***December Update***

This is later than I have been doing but here are my stats:

Stolen Memories sold seven books at .com and one book at .co.uk

So not as good as my best month but not my worst month. I’m really curious to see my numbers next month.

Until next time, have a great weekend!

Hurdles

Hurdles

So after just posting the question of whether or not I should upload my books to other formats before or after I’ve gotten some editing done there are two blog posts by authors I respect saying get your work on everything possible as soon as possible. So right now I am reading up on how to upload to Kobo and Barnes and Noble (pubit!). My husband uploads apps to Apple for a living so I’m going to see if he can look into that for me. I seriously doubt if I will get this done by the end of the month, there is just too much going on in my non-writing life to be able to get done all that I want to and need to with my writing. One thing’s for sure I won’t be able to afford edits on Stolen Memories until February at the earliest. I want to get the edits back from AB Chronicles before I set up a time for SM to be edited. It might come down to getting edits done on Book 2 before I can get professional edits done on SM, maybe I can read through it again and catch some things that I’ve missed. Publishing is an expensive hobby/career.

When I think back to just six months ago I’ve learned so much about publishing. I use to think that writing was the hard part, if I could only finish writing a book doing everything else would be a breeze. It’s amazing how much I didn’t know. I was sure I knew what I was doing dreaming about becoming a successful author. I knew nothing. At least it gives me something to laugh at while I try to figure out my cover art and how I should word my mailing list sign up sheet.

I’ve never thought of myself as someone who jumps into something blindly, we studied cars for well over a year and spent several weekends test driving before we finally made a decision. When we moved to a different apartment we started looking 6 months before we could even give notice on our lease, I had an excel spreadsheet with all the information about each apartment we’d been to. Occasionally we will make quick decisions, but that’s life, sometimes you have no choice in the matter. With publishing it was something I had wanted to do for years, but when I felt traditional was my only option I didn’t put forth much effort. I wrote down ideas and started plenty of things, but I never finished any of them because it seemed so hopeless. When I started hearing more and more about how popular Indie publishing was becoming and how eReader’s were making an audience available that hadn’t been before it all of a sudden became an obtainable dream. It was no longer on the level of winning the lottery. I would be able to publish, I may not sell anything, but it would still be out there for people to find.

When I started writing I chose a genre that I had read a lot in and I thought I could do well with. Halfway through I started looking into what else exactly I needed before I could publish. There was cover art, formatting, social media, website, editing, so many things that I had never given much thought to, some I wasn’t even aware of. Finishing something was supposed to be the only hurdle and it turned out to just be the first in a long line. Here I am 3 months after publishing SM and I’m still working on it, still have plans for it. Maybe everyone who goes into self-publishing isn’t as unprepared as I was, but just in case know that you are not alone.

Chaotic Christmas Schedule

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The holidays are always a pretty chaotic time at our house, as I’m sure it is at a lot of people’s. This year I decided to try to make it even more so by inviting a couple of friends over for food and a Christmas movie. I knew I would freak out over this so I thought I’d make it easy and only invite four people. If you’ve learned anything about me through this blog than you know even if it had been one person I would be nervous. I haven’t yet reached the stage of freaking out but since we didn’t put the Christmas decorations up last weekend and everyone is coming this weekend, leaving us just a few days to put everything up, I see a potential freak out in my future.

On top of all of the Christmas gatherings and family I will also, hopefully, be publishing the 3 Amelia Bennett Chronicles episodes that I’ve written. It all depends on my editor and if there is a ton of work to be done once she’s had her way with them. Having never used an editor I have no idea what to expect. I’ve already done all the formatting I can do with the episodes so I just need to have the cover art finished and handle the edits. Something else to try to not freak out about.

My KDP enrollment ended earlier this month and I have not re-enrolled because I would like to publish on other platforms. However this past weekend I had Stolen Memories opened and while skimming through looking for some information about a character I found an error. A couple other errors have been pointed out to me by readers. I’m now leaning toward waiting until I’ve had a chance to send this to an editor before I publish on more platforms. The question is do I want to wait because I want to make the book better or do I want to wait because I don’t want to learn more formatting? If it is because I don’t want to learn more formatting then that’s something else I would want to do this month. Lazy is not an acceptable excuse not to have my book up on as many platforms as possible.

Since I went back to work I’ve been doing all of my writing on the weekends. That’s a lot of pressure to put on two days when I already have all kinds of other things I have to get done. So I’m now trying to write 500 words a day. If I’m able to focus I can normally get this done in less than an hour, the key is using what I’ve learned with NaNoWriMo and just work through the fact that the words aren’t perfect. If I’m able to keep doing this I could actually end up writing even more that what I was doing.

That is the abbreviated list of things I will be doing and need to get done this holiday season. I hope everyone stays safe and has tons of fun this holiday!