It’s almost time

It’s almost time.  I will launch my newest novel into the saturated indie book market. It’s been a roller coaster ride for sure. I had originally planned to publish The Genealogist’s Guest many months ago. A paranormal minus the romance. It’s a dark fantasy, an intense, maybe disturbing  read. A fiction, after all how many ghosts do you see floating above the wood plank floor? Here’s an excerpt.

“Margaret can talk to the dead.” He sat back amused at the expression on Liz’s face. “It’s true,” he said. “In fact if I know Margaret well enough we have a spirit with us now.”

 

I started out with a simple plan, woman unknowingly opens a portal to her ancestors by painting a family tree. A little extra, they protect her from harm. Problem, her ancestors are not the guests she planned on, and she seeks help to rid them of her household. Easy, right? Another excerpt.

The sound of Isabella’s cries awakened all the others. “It’s happening again,” she whimpered. “Ed, he took my son.” Isabella’s pain, a pain only a mother could feel had nearly crippled her in 1885 when a stranger took her only son at age seven.

 

Ah, so the ancestors bring with them the knowledge of a curse on the family that all started with the rape and death of a seven year old boy decades ago. My simple plan just got complicated. Am I disappointed? No. The story took off, building layers of entertainment. I had no control. The subject of rape, incest and dark secrets that plagued this fictional family for years had to be told.

Dark Fantasy? I couldn’t pull off a romantic, endearing, lift your spirits up novel if I locked myself in solitude for years. Not even if I jumped into one of the many wonderfully written novels so pleasantly lifting any end to the story doesn’t make sense. Why end such bliss?

There you have it, my niche.

So, what’s taken me so long? Social websites. Yes, but with good motivation. I joined groups on Facebook and Goodreads, and followed other authors on Twitter. I briefly adventured into book review sites. I’ve spent hours reading about them, joining in on conversations, obtaining resources, learning about marketing. Shh, don’t read that word again!

As said, the bookshelves are saturated. I’ll narrow my niche down using keywords, such as paranormal, ghosts, underworld, ancestors and of course dark fantasy, and hopefully find readers interested in this genre I seemed destined to write.

I’ll post on Facebook, Goodreads, Twitter, etc., announcing the launch. I’ll keep talking about it, but (that bad word I don’t want you to read) isn’t my niche. I’m an introvert. I’m not going to be as outgoing, informative, web site savvy as others. Joanna Penn (http://www.thecreativepenn.com/ ) and Melissa Foster (http://www.worldliterarycafe.com/)  come to mind. In fact, during the time I spent on social websites my instinct screamed, get your ass back to your novel! Did I waste my time? No. I’m amazed at all the indie author support.

I said it somewhere about a year ago, now is the time for indie authors to get their works out. A year later, if you’re looking to write a novel and self publish now is the time to join social networks on writing and self publishing. Seriously, you’ll need to keep abreast of this fast growing market.   

What happened to my story, my dark fantasy? It became. Yes, it grew into the story it is today. I’m beside myself with joy. Here’s a blurb I’m working on:

The secret haunted her…

 A woman obsessed with fear remains silent about her knowledge of sexual abuse opens a portal to the underworld. They came through her hand-painted family tree. A horrid curse threatens to destroy the family if they fail to reveal their secrets beginning with the real reason her fifth generation grandfather killed Wilbur Savage in 1887.

The secrets haunted them all until….

I wanted to write this story, publish it fast and move on to the next novel.  If I had it would not be the same story. It wouldn’t have been as good. I know this now after a year of meddling in other author’s adventures and lessons learned, that I’m not that author who can write and publish novels in six months or less. Hence, my first novel, Compelled, I wrote it very fast, thirty days to be exact, and hastily published it, without tapping into the true writer I yearn to be. My lesson learned.

I’m finishing up The Genealogist’s Guest, reviewing, revising, resting on it a bit, preparing to launch it onto the masses. I wanted to do that yesterday, however, knowing it’s easy to publish, harder to get noticed. The success of my second novel will be determined by the readers and word of mouth. My task? Reach them. Yikes!

 

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Lately I’ve been

I had been writing for years, sounds like an opening sentence to a novel, but true I had stopped writing for a while and returned after my successful participation in the NanaWriMo 2011. The piece I wrote during the November challenge was published in June 2012. It is a crime novel with lots of action and a character driven by his love for his first sweetheart. Currently I’m writing a ghost story, sounds ordinary doesn’t it? A ghost story. But, it’s also about family and crime and two very strong women. One alive and the other dead, both lively though.

I read alot on Facebook, Twitter, GoodReads, WordPress, and several other social websites. In fact it takes up most of my time. However, the information on self publishing I find at these sites, you know the how to’s and what works for others, is beneficial, especially for new authors. I love creating stories. Let me say that again, I love it.

Publishing is a bit of a challenge but doable and Marketing sucks. I recently read a blog on the subject and the author suggested that authors stop tweeting a hundred tweets, and all the other marketing tactics and write. Huh? Yes, he suggested authors need many titles, especially more than one book to get noticed. You know what, I tend to agree. After reading the blog I did ease off the tweets, mostly the ones promoting my works. I still tweets stories I find about self publishing on the web. Why? I want to spread the word to new and established authors on what’s current in the self publishing world. I still catch up on FaceBook and GoodReads. I read what’s being posted or reviewed.

I learned about betas through these sites and thought instead of putting much of my free time into promoting and marketing why not focus more on my writing and since I obviously cannot stay away from social sites why not read the works of other authors, give reviews and maybe get one or two of my own work. So here I am. Instead of seeking reviews for an already published book. I seek opinions of my unpublished work before it goes live at Amazon or Smashwords. I found FictionPress on a Bing search. I’m three days old now. I’ve read and gave reviews, and though I’m no pro, I try to both encourage authors and alert them to typos or errors. I am a firm believer that authors cannot edit their own stories. Beta readers like those found at FictionPress can help authors polish their works to publishing quality. Does this take away from hiring a professional editor…maybe not. The more eyes on the story the better.

I recieve email updates on posts /authors I like from WordPress to keep up, but haven’t added much content myself, well actually none since late September. My time flies when ones busy marketing.

It wasn’t easy

But I have published my book, Compelled,  at Smashwords, Createspace, and Amazon. I am excited about the new book cover designed by Donna Casey at DigitalDonna.com. Editorial service was done by Diane Reynolds.  I send a special thanks for your contribution to this book. I am equally excited about my next title The Genealogists Guest, but I have a lot of work to do with Compelled. Mainly get the news out that it is available. I’ve been reading about marketing, my true weakness, and much of what I gather is that social networking is key, along with word of mouth, and a few reviews. And so I have advertised, should I say, on Facebook, Twitter, and other social websites.

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