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Posts Tagged ‘epublishing’

Last year at about this time I was just coming to the end of the first draft of BECOME: TO CATCH THE LIGHTNING.

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I didn’t finish the first draft until after Christmas and then I spent the next month (while the first manuscript cooled so I could look at it more critically) starting the first draft of BECOME: TO RIDE THE STORM.

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That worked out pretty well. Revisions, critiques, and more revisions were finished on the first book by May and it was published by the end of that month. The first draft of the second was finished in July and now it’s available for pre-order and will be published on January 2nd. (At the limited-time pre-order price of only 99 cents until January 5th. And, by the way, the first book is also only 99 cents until then.)

But, it turns out, finishing up before Christmas just isn’t working out as well, especially when I’m trying to start not just a new book, but a new series. Too many distractions this time of year.

But I’m not going to let that stop me. I’m going to get at least some work done on MAGE STORM in the next couple of weeks. Maybe just not as much as I’d hoped.

Mage Storm

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Look what came today:

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The proof of BECOME: TO RIDE THE STORM. The pre-order is live already (for only 99 cents) and the paperback will be published (hopefully) after I check over the proof.  Oh, and the first book of the two-book series, BECOME: TO CATCH THE LIGHTNING is reduced to 99 cents, too.

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Next up is to start getting the word out. And moving my brain into a new story. Most likely MAGE STORM.

Mage Storm

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Winding Up

I’m about 80% done with the polishing edit on BECOME: TO RIDE THE STORM.

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The pre-order should be up on Amazon any time now, with other vendors to follow after I finish the edit and the formatting. The release date is January 2nd and the pre-order will be only 99 cents until then.

I’m also dropping the price on the first book, BECOME: TO CATCH THE LIGHTNING to 99 cents for that period.

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I plan to do some promotion of the first book, probably mostly through social media. And I still have to finish researching launch strategies more thoroughly in the interim.

And then, of course, there’s formatting the print version.

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I had my plans all made. After the next book in line would be MAGE STORM, kicking off a new series.

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Then about a week ago, a new, bright, shiny story idea bounced across my path. It’s not really a new story, exactly. The idea has been around for a while, but it wasn’t ready. There were pieces missing. Especially the world building. And then, one night, there they were, all shiny and new.

The conventional wisdom at this point, is to right down all that inspiration, so I won’t forget. (That’s a lesson most writers have to learn the hard way–including me. No matter how much you think you’ll remember because it’s so wonderful–you won’t. Write it down.) And then go ahead with the original plan.

That’s . . . sometimes easier said than done.  I’ve written down the inspiration, but I still really, really want to write MEADOWSWEET, too. (Just like stray puppies and kittens, it’s a really bad sign when the get named.) My heart may already have gone over that fence.

MEADOWSWEET would be a fairytale retelling–a subgenre I’ve never done before. In another post I may go into which fairytale and why I chose that title instead of one more closely tied to the original fairytale.

So, what’s likely to happen next is me trying to write two stories at once. I’ve been that crazy before and it’s worked out. (Though I do have to be really careful to keep the characters and character names in the right stories.) It can work out. When one story hits a place that needs more thought or inspiration to break through, I can just switch to the other for a while. Given the trouble MAGE STORM was giving me a month or so ago, that might actually be a good thing.

Meantime, while I try to force myself to do that research on launch strategies, I’ve started the polishing edit on BECOME: TO RIDE THE STORM.

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Maybe that’ll give me a little more distance from that bright, shiny story temptation.

 

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I’ve finished the first round of final revisions on BECOME: TO RIDE THE STORM.

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That included a partial rewrite of a couple of chapters toward the end.

This morning I started going through the comments I still have marked up in the manuscript. At least a couple of them I added myself during the read through. Some of them will be relatively easy once I’ve decided how to handle them. I’ve knocked off a couple of those already. Some will take a lot more thought and a lot more work. At least I don’t need to do another complete read-through for these.

No definitive estimate at this time of how long this phase will take. Most likely before Thanksgiving. Getting closer and closer to the point where I can at least put it up for pre-order, though.

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The first of the critiques on BECOME: TO RIDE THE STORM is back.

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And, of course, there are a few revisions I need to make–some that will be easy, others that will require careful thought. I’m eager to get back to finish off that story. I really want to publish it either the last week of December or the first week in January.

So, now I’m working on finishing up the current chapter of MAGE STORM and making any notes that come to mind so that that story will be ready to pick up once everything’s in place for BECOME: TO RIDE THE STORM.

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Also, FIRE AND EARTH is currently free, but just through October 15th–tomorrow.

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I will be working on figuring out keywords for some time, I’m increasingly sure. In my last post, I mentioned making a couple of changes to my keywords. It’s still really to early to tell whether that had any impact–though my sales have gone up this week. There’s some reason to think it had nothing to do with the keywords. Still, at least it’s a change for the better.

The change I made was to pick out my two lamest keywords for each book–and lame is the only word I can think of to describe some of them–and replace them with NobleBright or Noble Bright (to cover both possible spellings).

Why’d I pick that? What is this NobleBright?

Well, NobleBright, like its opposite GrimDark comes originally from the world of gaming, from which it cross-pollinated over to books.

In GrimDark fantasy, the setting may be more . . . grim. More importantly, the characters are mostly out for their own self-interest–material or personal gain or revenge. More like the characters from some Sword and Sorcery than like classic epic fantasy. G. R. R. Martin’s SONG OF ICE AND FIRE series (more popularly known as GAME OF THRONES) is a pretty good example. Quite a lot of recently published–especially traditionally published–fantasy partakes of at least some of this.

NobleBright fantasy may–or may not–have a setting that is less grim (some have coined the term NobleDark for that), but the main attribute is that at least one of the principal characters acts out of noble motivations.

There’s an argument to be made that GrimDark is more realistic and more accurately portrays what a medievalesque world would have been like. I won’t dispute this. I will say that if I want reality, there’s 24/7 news on cable TV.

I think there’s a much better argument–perhaps especially in our current world–for stories about characters who behave more nobly. For characters who just maybe make us aspire to be better and to make the world better.

In any case, that’s the kind of story I write. So, maybe they’ll find a better and bigger audience with those keywords. I can hope.

 

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