8/2020 Writing update

With the release of my debut growing closer, most of my focus was on the various tasks related to the pre-launch stuff I had to take care of. Now, let’s get the details.

Book one pre-release

First, I’ve finalized the book description as well as the content of the front and end matter and what I’d write on my Goodreads and Amazon author page. This will get a few more looks (especially for typos) but the base is done.

Second, I said I’ve found a cover artist at the end of the previous month, and though the process was delayed, the cover is coming during September. When I have it, I’ll probably try to set up my Goodreads author page (I believe that having the book as announced on my website should be enough to have it added and thus upgrade to an author account).

Finally, I’ve decided to launch the book in October (unless something delays me) – as Amazon pays after two months, this means I’d not have to fill in tax report for 2020. Yay for less bureaucracy.

And when I’m mentioning the book, I’ve also made several more attempts on the formatting, which is now close to complete (I’m trying to sort out one more minor thing before I wrap it up) so I should be able to build the e-book file on a moment’s notice.

Web presence

Another plan was an update to this website – I made some changes in structure of the static part, moved the blog from the homepage to a separate page, created a new homepage, and some more things. It’s not yet complete, but most of the base work is done.

I’ve also spent some time thinking about whether or not I should have an author newsletter. I’ve said in past that I’m a newsletter skeptic. I realize their potential to keep the potential true fans engaged, the issue I face is: can I put together enough extra content or a regular basis? Another aspect is that newsletters usually tend to have some kind of bait exclusive enticement and the only thing I could get ready in a month’s notice is a ~3000 word short story (which I wrote a few years ago and should be able to edit relatively fast). This decision will definitely be one of my main September goals (and if I give it a try, then the set-up as well).

Another of my goals was to get some work done on the map, where I made a few attempts to add labels to the base picture – but this turns out to be a challenge. GIMP, in which I made the map, isn’t the most intuitive tool for text labels and doing it in any other software would mean having to re-do the labels in case of any change (and I know I’ll have several versions of the map both for internal purposes and for potential sequels/prequels).

Now that I’m mentioning something about graphics, I also made another sketch of the Order’s crest, which I’d want to use in a few ways – if I make it work. No details yet.

Other projects

Even though it wasn’t planned, I made a few more edits to book two (one scene added and one reworked) and I also try to think more about the edits needed in #3, especially in regards to the changes made since it was drafted. That would include edits for consistency coming from all the changes to #1 since beta and the recent changes made to #2 – and it’s not a small amount.

September plans

I don’t tend to plan that much when it comes to writing, but the state of my debut means I need to plan at least a bit. During september, I should come to some decision on the newsletter front (and if I give it a go, think about the form and content).

Finalizing the map should also be in the schedule, as should setting up my Goodreads author page (once I have the cover, as said above).

A final self-done proofread will also take place, likely at the end of the month, followed by the final typo fix pass. A typo-free books don’t exist but I’ll do my best anyway. And, finally, I’ll need to get back in contact with my beta readers to sort out how to give them the ‘thank you’ free copy of the book.

So, that’s my monthly update. I hope the last month was good for you as well. Feel free to comment or ask questions.

7 thoughts on “8/2020 Writing update

  1. From what I’ve read on many other author platforms, having a mailing list (monthly, bi-monthly newsletter) is essential nowadays for epublishers. It’s one of the only reliable ways to grow your audience since mailing lists go directly to subscribers. Mailchimp is easy to use, and I’d definitely recommend that. You can do gifts, giveaways, surveys, advertisements, contests—anything at all. It’s quite versatile.

    I probably won’t publish my book until I have at least 100 to 200 subscribers (only 16 at the moment, it takes a while, but well worth it). That way, I have a much better chance for book buys and reviews during that crucial first two weeks.

    Anyway, just my two cents. Good luck with your story!

    Liked by 1 person

      • For the longest time, I was against it too. Then I realized how every successful e-author is doing it now. It take time, writing all those newsletters and short story or poetry giveaways. But at the same time, it sharpens your writing and business skills.


  2. Congrats on moving closer to your publishing goal, Tom! As for newsletters, I know everyone says to have one and that it’s direct marketing to an audience that’s interested, but I’ve personally found that while people might be interested in some of what my newsletter offers, it hasn’t helped with book sales, and the opens and clicks have steadily dropped as the year goes on. Whether that’s because of the state of the world right now, or the content, I don’t know. It takes work and time to put together a newsletter. Time that I could be using to write instead. If you’re going to have a newsletter, it needs to be serving a purpose for you and a purpose that is worth the time and effort.

    Liked by 1 person

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