writer

Branching Out

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So I finally have most of my books on multiple platforms. Over the weekend I was able to upload the Amelia Bennett Chronicles on Pubit and Kobo. I was also able to get Stolen Memories on Kobo, because of the many format changes when I first wrote it getting it uploaded on Pubit is going to take some work I am not qualified to do. Thankfully I have a big strong man who knows some HTML and happens to be the King of the Internet so I should be good. Once he actually gets down to doing it. I still plan on getting them all uploaded to Smashwords but I’m happy with the dent I’ve made in expanding to new platforms.

Out of the three platforms I’ve uploaded to now by far the easiest was Kobo. I really liked their layout, they also converted my .doc to an .epub and that made uploading to Pubit so much easier. The only part about Kobo that was difficult was coming up with a publisher name. I finally decided on “Top of the Mountain” with no publishing at the end.

Pubit will hold a special place in my heart just because the day after I uploaded someone purchased all three of my Amelia Bennett Episodes. So far, over all platforms, the only people to have purchased these have been myself, my mother, and my sister. So the fact that someone purchased them was pretty awesome to me. If they had been the first thing I’d published I think I might have been crushed by how they are selling; but I’ve grown a thicker skin and realize that while I loved writing them they aren’t what everyone is looking for.

Now that my books are available for more people to download I’m back to working on Book 2, I have a fan that keeps asking when it will be out and I can’t let her down ūüėÄ

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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.

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**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.

Cyber Monday Recap

Cyber Monday is over, I’m a few dollars poorer, but I am now the proud owner of a cover for my 3 episode Amelia Bennett Chronicles arc. On a non-writing note I also have the Sims 3 Seasons shipping to me. Yeah!!

Download wise I had just over 300 people download my book in the US, India, UK, Germany, and France. This was significantly less than my last free day, however if you take into consideration that last time was actually two days and I had joined a promo group, I really don’t think 300 is too bad. Hopefully I will get at least one good review out of those downloads.

I was very happy with my rank during the sale, I got as high as #40 in my sub-genre of Free Fantasy, Futuristic, & Ghost (Amazon really needs to work on their sub-genres) and around #1,700 overall.

The bad, as soon as my free promo was over my rank went back to what it had been and I no longer have any visibility. I’m hoping this is fixed and not how Amazon is now doing things because if that’s the case than a free download where only 300 books were downloaded is almost useless.

During my free promo the only advertising I did was here on this blog, on Twitter tons of hash tags were used, my fan page at Facebook was updated, and my signature at kindleboards was updated to say it was free. That is it. Basically I did nothing.

I feel bad about this but at the same time I am terrified to market my book. When I published Stolen Memories I thought it was the best I could do, I felt like I had done everything to make it good, and I honestly liked it. Now when I read bits of it and look at it I cringe. I can’t believe I did that and I want people to pay for this? It’s hard to market something when you feel that way. I’ve read so many authors that say they are so glad their first works are not available and that no one ever read them. I published my first work. I tell myself that my true fans, you know my family, will get to see how I grow as a writer and appreciate me more when I start publishing awesome stuff.

All that to say, I am proud of what I accomplished when I hit publish on Stolen Memories but the perfectionist inside of me cringes when I look at all the mistakes I made. Oh well, this was a nice experiment on what happens when your book goes free and you don’t do any advertising or very little advertising.

Vengeful Neurotic

I’ve never really tried to define who I am as a person, it always seemed to vary depending on my mood. I read recently that your twenties are supposed to be when you figure out who you are, or at least who you want to be. I know what I would love to be, a successful, reclusive, author. What am I currently though?

Have you ever played Zelda? Whenever Link finds something that you need he turns to the screen and holds whatever it is up and fanfare¬†plays. I’ve felt that way recently when I realized certain words described a part of me perfectly, no matter what mood I’m in. It was almost like there was an audible click and I couldn’t understand why I had never realized those words fit me so perfectly. So far it’s only happened twice and the words are probably not what anyone would want to be described as, but they fit like a tailor-made glove. Should I try to change so they no longer fit? Can I change parts of me that, at least I feel like, have been with me forever? Do I even want to try?

Neurotic– of, relating to, constituting, or affected with neurosis

NeurosisРa mental and emotional disorder that affects only part of the personality, is accompanied by a less                distorted perception of reality than in a psychosis, does not result in disturbance of the use of language, and is accompanied by various physical,   physiological, and mental disturbances

Symptoms (according to Wikipedia): …anxiety, sadness or¬†depression, anger, irritability, mental confusion, low sense of self-worth, etc., behavioral symptoms such as phobic avoidance, vigilance, impulsive and compulsive acts, lethargy, etc., cognitive problems such as unpleasant or disturbing thoughts, repetition of thoughts and¬†obsession, habitual fantasizing, negativity and cynicism, etc. Interpersonally, neurosis involves dependency, aggressiveness,¬†perfectionism, schizoid isolation, socio-culturally inappropriate behaviors, etc.

Now I don’t suffer from all of those symptoms but when I read them out loud to my husband his eyes got large and he was almost yelling when he said “That is you!”

VengefulРfeeling or showing a desire to harm someone who has harmed you : feeling or showing a desire for vengeance

There’s really not much more to add to that. I’ve never sought out or been given a reason to seek out vengeance, but evidently I give off the air of someone who could dole out violence. Only when my family or myself have been threatened of course. A lot of people when they’ve only known me for a little while and don’t know me very well display the demeanor of a person afraid for their lives when around me. This lasts until I tease them about it and they realize what they’ve been doing and they can’t understand why and stop. Until they piss me off. Then they go back to cowering. This seems to mainly only happens with men; though I worked with a young woman who told me she was kind of afraid of me. When I asked her why she said I read too much, that I probably knew all kinds of ways to kill someone.

So there are the two words I’ve found so far that describe me. As an author I know the value of the perfect descriptive word so I’m happy that I now have these, but I’m not sure if they are good words to be described as. What words would you use to describe yourself?

Cyber Monday

 

I’ve decided.

¬†After only¬†2¬†sales¬†in November¬†(admittedly I have been completely absent online except for¬†this blog)¬†I am going to use one of my free days. Cyber Monday, November 26th, Stolen Memories will be free!¬†So tell your friends, your family, anyone and everyone so they will forget to download it then download it the next day when it will cost money. ūüôā

There are several promos taking place on that date and I haven’t joined any of them. I’ve decided to use this as an experiment. As my first book, like a first child, everything I’m doing is an experiment, so hopefully I’ll learn something for the next child. Err. Book. Same thing.

I tried to create my own banner and a pic advertising the sale but I am artistically challenged, that’s the most polite way to say it. To put it bluntly¬†I can’t even draw a stick figure that doesn’t look like it was drawn by someone who is normally right handed and they’ve decided to draw with their left. It’s really pathetic and I wish I could do better but oh well. My husband threw these together last night after I tore him away from the Wii U. I’m going to post them on Facebook and Twitter.

I was able to finally finish the rough draft of episode 3 on the Amelia Bennett Chronicles. I’ve gone back to liking that as a name, still unsure of the title for the first episode but we’ll see. Now that I’ve got the first draft done I’m going to contact an editor to edit the first two while I do my own edits for episode 3. Kind of nervous about contacting an editor because I’ve never done that before. I’ve looked into several based on recommendations from the¬†kindleboards¬†and I think I’ve found someone who will do the job well and not break my bank, but we’ll see I still have to contact them.

As soon as episode three is finished on my side I will go back to finishing Twin Moons of¬†Andove¬†Book 2. I have a much better idea of what I want to do with that book and the break between the two has given me a nice break from that world. I’m not sure how long this is going to take me to write because my new job has been sort of erratic with over-time and with the holiday’s coming up I will be doing a lot of traveling. I had hoped to be released by now, but I will be lucky to see a January release.