Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Why I want to write Pocket Novels

I mentioned in my post about my goals for this year that I want to write a My Weekly Pocket Novel. I now want to say that I do want to write for them and not just one, but continuously as a regular writer for them. Here are my reasons why.

1. As I mentioned in my goals, if I write one and send it in to the Romantic Novelist's Association (RNA) New Writer's Scheme and get accepted, then I can go on to become a full member. I've been in the NWS now for over 13 years.

2. I like their stories. They are my kind of gentle romance and family stories, and can include romance with intrigue, that I often read and write myself. They are the right length for me to write, too, at 50K.

3. I can be traditionally published if I get one published. This will make me a hybrid author.

4.As well as getting a flat fee for being published by them, I can offer the book to a large print publisher, who sends it to libraries, so therefore, I will be eligible for PLR.

5. Finally, I will get to see my name in print in the shops.

So, my new plan is to finish rewriting the book I am working on now and send it to the RNA. Once I've done that, I will rewrite a scene in my Asperkids first book and get that edited so I can self-publish it. Then I will rewrite another ms that I wrote years ago and is currently in my wardrobe ready to work on again, and that will become another pocket novel.

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Now 'A Friend in Need' is published, I am back to tell you how to reach as many readers you can as an indie author of ebooks – this is the way I do. In my next library talk I will be mentioning ebook platforms, and this is the way to get to as many readers as you can – publish on as many digital platforms you can. I know that some indie authors have had great success with publishing exclusively on Amazon, esp with their Select programme, but for me, I want to reach as many readers as I can, to let them know what I like writing about: mainly hope and second chances. Ever since I became an indie author in 2011, I have published widely. Although, when I published ‘Snakeskin Boots’ I did put it in Select as an experiment to see what results I got – no sales. When the 90 days were up, I published it widely.  I will continue to publish on as many channels as I can. So, when ‘A Friend’ came out last week, I published it on Amazon, Kobo, Smashwords for its own store and the US libraries and subscription services eg Oyster, and Draft2Digital for Apple and their new channel, Tolino. Now that D2D have this new channel, I am going to put the rest of my ebooks that aren’t on there, on there. I started today by putting ‘More Fish in the Sea’ on there. I have now put all of my ebooks on there. I have also checked Goodreads, and they are all on there, too. My next task is to update my website so that they are all on there, too, plus reorganise the pages for my children's ebooks. I also need to put them all on ALLi's website for discoverability.

So, that’s how to reach as many readers you want to – publish your ebook on all platforms you can find. If D2D add more channels, I will add them there, too.

Are you an indie author? If so, do you believe in being exclusive to one etailer or do you publish widely? Let me know.

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Inspiration behind 'A friend in need'.

I have just published on Amazon my latest adult romance ebook in the Geraldine's Gems series. It is book 6 called 'A Friend in Need'. There are two inspirations behind the idea of the book and why I put bullying and counselling in the book.

The idea of the story was for Faith, who is bullied and suffers abuse from her boyfriend, to find someone else who was the opposite and she falls for him. The idea for a bullying boyfriend came from both agony aunt letters in newspapers and an article in a girl's magazine about someone being bullied by her partner and how she got out of it. Faith has a bit of help from her late Aunt Geraldine, and a colleague, Jenny. In the book, Faith is a teacher but with encouragement from Jenny and Ben, whom she falls for, she decides a change of career and wants to become a counsellor. There is a scene where a pupil is locked in the outdoor girls' toilet and Faith helps her out. This scene was inspired by a true experience of mine when I was at primary school. Two girls, whom I thought were my friends, did lock me in the toilets, but they let me out in the end.

So, that was what inspired me to write the story idea and that particular scene.

'A friend in need' is available from Amazon UK at http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00T3ET0OG
Amazon US at http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00T3ET0OG

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Name your favourite book of 2014

At the last RNA meeting in Holborn last Saturday we were asked to bring our fave book of last year. Here are mine:

1. How to write and sell short stories by Della Galton. I got this as a Xmas present in 2013. I started reading it but then got other non-fiction stuff to read. Then I went to a Women's Weekly Fiction Workshop last October where Della was the main speaker and I was inspired. I read the rest of the book, and it made me decide, that yes, I do want to become a womag fiction writer.

2. Having read the above, I wanted more knowledge about writing for womag's. So I bought and read How to write short stories and How to write ghost stories by Kath McGurl. I now want to write ghost stories too for womag's.

3. As an indie author who wanted to be more business-like this year, I read 'Write Livelihood - How to create a business plan for authors ' by Ryan Petty. This is the book that I have been working the last few posts on about creating your plan.

4. I also read the first ebook in the 3-for-1 set 'Indie Author Power Pack' which is called 'Write. Publish. Repeat' by Johnny B Truant, Dave... and I can't remember the name of the third author. Buy it, cos it includes the second version of 'Let's Get Digital' by David Gaughran, and the second version of 'How to market your book' by Joanna Penn. All a v good.

5. Business books for authors by Joanna Penn. Straight forward talking for authors.

So, what have you read last year and what was your favourite book/ebook? Let me know.

Wednesday, 14 January 2015

My pricing experiment

I have hinted about doing this on social media, and I have actually begun it - a pricing experiment. Up until this year, all my ebooks were either free or 0.99c. Then I started to read Dean Wesley Smith's blog 'Think like a publisher' again and the new EU VAT law came in and I decided to increase the prices of most of them. I am going to do this for maybe three months to see what the results are. Here is what I have done:

The Guardian Angels
The Railway Angel, the first in my YA series 'The Guardian Angels' is still perma-free. I am keeping it that way to entice readers to buy the rest of the series and a thank you. I am still getting lots of downloads for that. Whether those are being read or not I don't know.
The rest of the series is now $2.99 each.

Geraldine's Gems
One Good Turn is remaining as 99c it being the first in the series. More Fish and Don't Get Mad are both now $2.99. The others in the series 'Life' and A trouble shared are both $3.99.

These are both $2.99 each. The last one, yet to be written, will also be that price.

All these ebooks are now at $2.99.

I have priced all ebooks between 5K and 10K at $2.99. All ebooks over that word count and under 20K are $3.99.

So, I will let you know how the pricing goes. What results in sales I get.

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Step 4 - Your goals for the year

So, here is the final step to your plan and the most important one I feel - writing down your goals for this year. To motivate you, here are mine:

1. To complete my YA fantasy series 'The Guardian Angels'
2. To complete my mermaid trilogy
3. To complete my adult romance series 'Geraldine's Gems'
4. To write 1 or 2 more of my Singleton village series (working on that now)
5. To maybe write another of my Asperkids series
6. To publish my first Asperkids books about Boring Billy
7. To get at least 5 short stories accepted and published by women's magazines
8. To earn at least £500 from no 7
9. To break even with my writing expenses this year. I've been working at a loss the last few years.#
10. The main one I feel is... to graduate from the RNA's New Writer's Scheme, hopefully with a Pocket Novel script. Working on this now. Am rewriting a script that I submitted a few years ago and did nothing with.

So there you have my ten goals for this year. I've been working on numbers 4, 7, 8 and 10 so far. Will give you an update on how I'm going with these in a few months time. So, what goals have you made for this year? Let me know how you are going with them.

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Creating a business plan - Step 3

This is a third step, which you don't have to do, but I read it in an ebook I am reading by Ryan Petty about Creating a Writing Livelihood. It is to write down an inventory of all your assets eg stories that you have got to write, written and not done anything with or have ideas for. As I write ebooks for both adults and children, and have started writing short stories for women's magazines, I am only going to put on here the list for adult mss. Here we go:

To Complete: 1 x Geraldine's Gems to include a short story that will conclude the series
4 x Secret of Singleton short stories
Checkmate - old ms which I will be working into a My Weekly Pocket Novel

Written and not done anything with (ie their old mss in my wardrobe)
1. Forgotten Memories
2. Stay With Me (thinking of turning into a pocket novel)
3. A Matter of Time

Ideas for:
A series of 5 ebooks about superwomen heroes who fall in love with men who don't, to stop villains from creating monsters out of children with powers.
Lots of notes with ideas on for both contemporary and romantic suspense books.
Eden's World - might turn this into a serial outline for Woman's Weekly