Month: July 2014

Writing progress report: third book finished

So another one bites the dust. Today I typed ‘The End’ on ‘The Mages of Bennamore’, the third epic fantasy set in the Brightmoon world. Because I like statistics, here are some numbers for the three books for comparison: Book 1: ‘The Plains of Kallanash’ Elapsed writing time: 1 year Total days of writing: 190 Total words: 220,000 Average words per writing day: 1,100 Chapters: 58 Book 2: ‘The Fire Mages’ Elapsed writing time: 5 months Total days of writing: 90 Total words: 151,000 Average words per writing day: 1,700 Chapters: 44 Book 3: ‘The Mages of Bennamore’ Elapsed writing time: 7 months Total days of writing: 119 Total words: 157,000 Average words per writing day: 1,300 Chapters: 44 This third book is much the same size as the second, but it took 7 months overall instead of 5 months, largely because I was also working on revising ‘The Plains […]

First books and second books

Writing a book is no different from any other craft: it takes practice. Nobody is able to paint or to make model aeroplanes or to write phone apps or drive a car straight out of the box. Well, growing potatoes, maybe; stick them in the ground, then dig them up three months later and enjoy delicious new potatoes with butter and a sprig of mint. Yummy. But I digress. Everyone needs to learn and hone their skills, and (except for potatoes) that takes practice. A lot of practice. For driving a car, they say it takes one lesson for every year of your life. For writing, the received wisdom is that it takes a million words. So the first effort is always a bit wonky. It’s like those clay models kids bring home from school – they’re always a bit lop-sided. ‘The Plains of Kallanash’ is my first, wonky effort. […]

On Wattpad and KDP Select

Now that I’m getting closer to publishing ‘The Plains of Kallanash’ in September, I’ve been starting to think about marketing (for want of a better term). Which online retailers to sell through, pricing and all that jazz. And how to build up some awareness of the book beyond the three regular readers of this blog (hi folks! {waves}). I had already devised a plan to post ‘The Plains of Kallanash’, chapter by chapter, on Wattpad, a process that would take many months. I’ve now uploaded more than half the book, and somewhere around the two-thirds point would fall the actual date of publication to Amazon. The idea was to make Wattpad readers aware of the book itself while uploading the final chapters, and even if that didn’t translate into sales, it might generate a review or two. But then I started looking into Amazon’s programs in more detail, in particular, […]

Posted July 19, 2014 by PaulineMRoss in Publishing/marketing / 9 Comments

A year on Amazon: how many reviews?

A year ago, for reasons not relevant here, I decided to record every Kindle ebook uploaded to Amazon for a full month. For the sake of my sanity, I restricted it to epic fantasy. I recorded 390 ebooks uploaded over the month of April 2013, excluding foreign language ones. A year on, it occurred to me that it might be interesting to see what had happened to those 390 books. So during April 2014, I looked each one up on Amazon, and noted the number of reviews. These are total numbers; I didn’t attempt to track numbers of 5*, 4* and so on. I noted rankings, too, but these are just a snapshot in time, whereas reviews are cumulative.

Posted July 9, 2014 by PaulineMRoss in Publishing/marketing / 2 Comments

Kallanash update: final edits done

I’ve spent the last few weeks feverishly revising ‘The Plains of Kallanash’ in light of the comments received from my beta readers. And when I say ‘feverishly’, sometimes it almost felt as if I were literally feverish – I’d go to bed thinking about edits, I’d wake up thinking about them, and sometimes I even dreamt about them. It was hard work, and a great deal of it was spent, not pecking away at the keyboard, but just mulling over ideas. Not much else got done, although I’ve found that mindless occupations like ironing or gardening are excellent pondering opportunities. After the pondering and the final rewriting, I read through the whole book one final time to tighten up excessive wordiness, and looking out for last minute gotchas resulting from the revisions. No use removing that unwanted chunk of text if a different part of the book refers to the […]