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Showing posts from February, 2018

Searching for My Style

I struggle with trying to create and maintain a writing style that screams me.  In general, I feel like the way I write isn’t unique by any means, and yet, I think I’ve finally stumbled upon a common theme in the way that I write that stretches across multiple stories of mine.  A part of my style. 

It’s a weird one, and it’s kind of hard to explain.  But I’ll do my best.

-Narrative vs. Perspective-

It has to do with how I perceive narrative and perspective as two separate concepts.  Whether I’m writing in first or third person, there is a trend I keep returning to where I’m almost breaking the narrative, and yet, I don’t.  Not in my mind. 

Perspective, in general, is just a way of identifying how you perceive the information given to you.  In first person, you’re limited by the thoughts and observations of one singular person.  In third person limited, you’re likewise limited.  In third person omnipresent, you get to see the world from anyone’s perspective. 

But the way I write is m…

Right, or Pleasantly Surprised?

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As I waited for Amazon to accept me or reject me, my mind was whirling with ups and downs of why I could succeed and why I could fail.  What would my future hold?  This giant corporation had the blossoming bud of my life’s dream in their hands and I was on the edge of my seat in anticipation to see what their verdict could mean for the rest of my career as an author.  Would they toss it aside, or help it grow?

I don’t think I did a bad job at the campaign.  By my figures, I spent close to half my entire 30 day campaign hot and trending – the last week I was close to spending every day-all day hot.  I got almost 3.5k views.  Five out of the top ten Scouts in the leaderboard nominated my book, including the #1 Scout.  My marketing folks I hired to help me showered me in support and compliments (I like to hope it’s because they liked my story and not because they were trying to make a customer happy).  I managed to make a little noise and got some positive feedback from total strangers w…

Marketing Your Kindle Scout Campaign: A Review, Part II

In Part I, I discussed the marketing methods that I recommend and ones that I almost recommend.  In this Part II, I have a list of marketing techniques I do not recommend, as well as a final note of what I wish I would have done better and how Kindle Scout appears to work. 

Not Recommended:

Books and the Bear – This is another company that baited me by following me on Twitter.  I was getting desperate to become hot and get views again before I had found the Fiverr marketing.  So I panicked and purchased their $10 one-time promo to their giant Twitter account before I realized this one-or-two times promotion stuff just doesn’t yield results.  Look at where you’re getting promoted!  Look, I beg you!  The Bear has a lot of followers, yes, but they also post umpteen times a day with their own advertisements for marketing and editing so that in no time your paid advertisement gets lost on their page.  Heck, since following them back they’ve been clogging up my feed every day with their own …

Marketing Your Kindle Scout Campaign: A Review, Part I

This is Part I, featuring recommended and maybe recommended marketing techniques for Kindle Scout.  Read Part II about what’s not recommended and a final overview of Kindle Scout.

Before I even launched my Kindle Scout campaign, I was getting baited by marketing companies to try and buy their promotions.  Being pretty new at this marketing thing, I was looking for cheap, effective ways to promote, and I quickly learned that sometimes you get what you paid for and you better be a smart shopper.

If you undergo a venture like Kindle Scout as a new author with little experience in marketing, I encourage you to really double check what you’re actually getting.  An ad of “reach 100k+ people on Twitter” sounds too good to be true because it is.  Sure, there might be 100k people following said Twitter account, but when you only pay for one post when they post over 30 times a day, you’re post is likely to never be seen.

I have outlined some very specific methods that I implemented in my Kindle…

Critiquing my Kindle Scout Editorial Feedback

Perhaps the worst part of being rejected by the Kindle Scout team was that they did it so politely, so encouragingly, so supportively. I almost wonder if it would have been easier to accept if they had told me they hated my novel. But for them to tell me they liked it, but didn’t want to publish it, threw me for a huge loop. How hard is this publishing thing really going to be if good works still get the axe? How good does “good” have to be?

-It Hurts So Good-

The editorial feedback is a special Kindle Scout is doing at this time, starting in November 2017 and ending at the end of February 2018. When you get the email, it starts with “general comments” about the novel and their opinion of it as a whole. Mine was as follows:

“There is a lot that we like about this novel, and we’re impressed by the positive and pragmatic attitude you express on your blog about the business aspects of pursuing a long-term literary career. You’re definitely the kind of talented and business-conscio…

I Lost the Battle, But Not the War

There's no way to sugar coat it.  If you nominated The Un-Life of William Moore, you probably already got the email by now.  It was not selected for publication.

And there's a ton of things I could say about that and how that makes me feel, but I'm sure you can imagine it.  We've all fought hard for something before and ended up not being able to succeed.  It hurts like hell.  I've personally been trying to hold in the emotions because I don't have the time to process them right now.  I found out an hour before my second writers guild meeting and couldn't let some bad news ruin my makeup and what was going to be a fun night.

I do plan on moving forward with getting The Un-Life published.  I did have a back-up plan, but had rather hoped I wouldn't have to use it.  Now that I'm in that situation, I want to make sure that Plan B is the right plan before going full steam ahead into it.

Plan B is to self-publish via Kindle Direct and Createspace.  At thi…

Heart to Heart, Author to Author

Authors, I got to tell you guys, it’s a pleasure talking to you.

It’s amazing how quickly we can chum up with fellow writers because we’re all worried about the exact same things. Query rejections, editor critiques, cover design, marketing, the next story, website views, ratings. Holy moly is there a lot to worry about when you’re an author! Especially a self-published or small time author that hasn’t been able to stand out yet. It’s refreshing to know that everyone else is worrying about the same thing. And then you can complain to each other about all of it and everything they say is so relatable that it hurts, and yet it makes you feel better. Misery and company and all that.

And then you guys are just so supportive, too. I’m floored by how quickly a stranger that also writes will wish you the best of luck and support you without even really knowing you yet. We know the struggle, we know the pain, so we lift up others when we can.

It’s like we’re all cousins. Maybe dis…

How Did I Get Here? - Part II

Catch up on Part I of How Did I Get Here?

-A Shot in the Dark-

Eragon wasn’t the only thing that guided me to where I am now.  There was another creative series that by happenstance had another big impact on me.

It was only by chance that I got into it.  It was February 21, 2005 around 7pm, the time of night when my parents had usually sworn off watching cartoons on our single TV and started watching boring HGTV stuff.  But that night, there wasn’t anything particular they wanted to watch.  And me neither, to be frank.  But as I was scrolling through my cartoon channels on this rare night I had control of the TV, I came upon a new show I’d heard advertised before that I thought looked kind of stupid.  But there was nothing else good on, so I tuned in, and fell in love. 

The show was Avatar: the Last Airbender.  It swept me up in its rich universe full of conflict and hope.  From that day on, I was irrevocably hooked on the magical world of Avatar.  To this day I’ve never loved another …

Dear Amazon

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Dearest Amazon,

If you do more than just look at the book, if you also look at the social presence of an author, if you are reading this now, let me tell you: when it comes to my Kindle Scout campaign, the only thing you’ve got to lose is a beautiful partnership with a loyal customer and determined businesswoman.

I promise you there are only good things coming your way if you support me. If you take the chance to be the first one to jump start my writing career, you can bet that I’m going to come to you first with everything from here on out. When I’m treated right (and you’ve always treated me right for the past 10 years), I stick with you, and I really look forward to doing more business with you in the publishing world.

I didn't go into Kindle Scout thinking it was a tool to use to get published - I went into it with starting a business in mind. I’m not going to be a one-shot wonder. I dream bigger than that. The Un-Life of William Moore is only the beginning. I’ve got bigg…