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Showing posts from November, 2015

AND THEN I WOKE UP… HOW I BECAME AN AMAZON BESTSELLER OVERNIGHT

The backstory (I know, info dumps, eh? I’ll keep it short…) Inish Carraig is my second book, and it’s self published (my first, Abendau’s Heir, is part of a three book deal).
Inish has been around a few blocks and back again – that whole story is in this blog list in lots of places – but it came out in August 2015 and did… okay. Not as well as my first book in the equivalent time and, to be honest, I had it pegged as a build-my-name-a-bit title.
One thing, though, was that it was getting good reviews – great reviews in fact. I decided to consider it my critically-acclaimed-bomb of a book and told myself every starving author in a garret has one of those.
The book is listed in Kindle select which means it’s exclusive to Amazon online, although I have it in a couple of bricks-and-mortar stores, too (and any device can read it with a quick conversion).
Kindle select allows, once every 90 days, to list a book at a reduced price and retain 70% of the selling price. It’s a nice boost t…

Where are all the sci-fi families?

There are some – the Atreides in all their dysfuntional glory, Lois McMaster Bujold’s Vorkosigans, but the vast majority of sci-fi stories I’ve read don’t have families central to the tale. (I am, as ever, happy to be shot down.)
Books without families, however, abound. The solitary figure taking on space, the team of adventurers becoming each other’s family, the colony providing the place of safety, almost a replacement family, they’re all part of the genre. It’s as if, in the future, there will be no place for family, that we’ll become one large mass of people interconnected, without the need for roots.
Why is that? Why is Logan not on the run with his family? What is it about making his decision a solitary one that gives the story more than a family would have done? Would it have reduced the enigma of the character? Logan runs because he’s going to die. What would have changed if it was his sister who was going to die? Because that’s the point about storytelling – the context ch…

ON SUBMISSION AND SANITY

IN THE BEGINNING….
In the beginning, there was getting an agent. Two years of querying, of rewrites and Revise and Resubmits. Of watching emails, and watching Twitter feeds and checking response times on Querytracker. Of guessing and second guessing until, at last, an agent came along and took me under their wing, called me ‘ingenious’ and worked to find my book a good home.
My writing future was secured. I had someone in my corner. I had a writing career.
My expectations were realistic, I thought. My first book might not sell. It happens to a lot of authors. But I’m a career writer, I hope, my next book was well under away, my trilogy was down to the very last stage of an open window (which had been 18 exhausting months of checking emails, and forum updates and working out stats and dreaming of what-might-bes), and things were looking good.
The open window didn’t work out – I was rejected in the last 3% of the 5000 or so subs. But I didn’t let it get me down. I dusted myself off …