Potter’s month in writing. April 2012
April 30, 2012
As spring makes itself known and the next WordWatchers meeting looms, we come to that time in the month when I reflect on what I achieved within the literary world.
One of the creative highlights for me came at the beginning of the month when I discovered AudioBoo via another WordWatchers member. It galvanised me to do a podcast. I used the fabulous Blue Yeti microphone I’d bought for this purpose and recorded to Audacity on my PC. I edited the mistakes and the occasional sigh or deep breath, had a great time hunting for a royalty free jingle and uploaded the finished content to AudioBoo for all to hear. The podcast was of the Prologue from Chasing Innocence. You can check it out here. I plan on doing at least a chapter a month.
Last month (March) I started a series of blog posts on Creative Crow about how to indie publish a book, the second appeared this month. This resulted in the Literary Agency I’d worked with in copy and proof editing Chasing Innocence, to suggest we work together producing a How to guide for indie publishers. This seemed a great idea and the book is tentatively titled ‘From Clueless to Published – an Indie guide to writing a good book, publishing in digital and paperback and getting it into the hands of the reading nation’. It’ll be out sometime towards the back of 2013. It also resulted in this post titled the Indie Writers Illusion, which addresses the age old question of how to write a good book. I list a whole bunch of ideas.
Chasing Innocence got some great reviews this month, which led me to write this post on those moments that make you feel all the sweat and tears are worth it.
So we finally come to that tricksy matter of the next book. I’ll be expanding on this in greater detail in my next blog later this week. In writing book #2 I wanted to really challenge myself, not only in writing a first person narrative, but to create and explore a character and situation totally alien to me, while making it engrossing for the reader. The net effect has been very slow progress. There have been so many variables to consider. New characters to feel natural writing about. Skills and world events that ripple through the narrative. Understanding the pacing and immediacy required in first person while keeping the scope of the story wide for the type of plot I have in mind. And keeping the reader engrossed. Did I mention that already? If you asked me how it’s been, I’d say: Hard. One of my biggest problems has been that I now know the quality required of a finished book. So much so I’ve busily been layering in that quality as I write, which I believe has to be tempered on the first draft. In order to stop myself doing the endless cross-editing I got an iPad this month. I LOVE my iPad. I downloaded and now use IA Writer to create the first draft of a chapter, tapping away directly onto the screen. Only when the chapter is finished do I port it out to OpenOffice for editing. This has seen a marked increase in productivity and two extra chapters, totalling 4,000 very polished words. The first draft of this book will be roughly equal to the quality I eventually got for CI on draft three, I believe.
Finally, Amazon ran another free promotion this month for Chasing Innocence on the Kindle. In two days it went to #10 in the overall free charts and #4 in Thriller Fiction, totalling 2500 downloads including four hundred in the US, fifty in Germany and one in France. The result was a week in the top #100 paid charts where it spent half that time in the top #50 of Thriller Fiction. It’s slowly falling now as you need multiple points of attack to sustain a run in the charts. The hope is it will settle slightly higher than where it had been. Prior to the promotion I was selling one to three books daily. Currently it is twenty daily. It’d be nice to settle around the five a day mark. Hopefully reputation, Amazon reviews and brilliant blogs like Confession of a Reader, will keep it selling.
See you next month.