Thursday, February 4, 2010

Getting Back to Basics

Over the last couple of weeks, I've really taken a serious look at where I want my writing career to go. Seeing how I'm writing in place of a traditional 9-5 job, I need to make sure I'm being productive with every single minute I have. That being said, I also need to make sure I'm staying focused on what my goals are. To become a well known author? Of course that's one of my goals, but what about the path leading up to that?

I'll admit that there are some days that my thoughts and my projects are scattered like a bag of marbles someone dropped on a tile floor. I don't end up having any real direction with any of them, but I'll try to balance them all on the same plate, never really mastering all or any of them. Evaluating this issue is key to my success.

After the family drama, our financial pressure, and all of the nonsense that comes out of life is scraped out of the way, what is it that I want to focus on? Where do I want to go as a writer, and not just a writer, but a self-published writer? I have to take into account web design, marketing strategies, book signings, cover design, editing and networking. It's a barrage of stuff that needs to be sorted out.

The first conclusion I've come to is to get rid of my email newsletter. As much as I love the look of the newsletter each month and my giddiness at sending it out to the 30+ people on my newsletter mailing list, I can really do without the $10 fee each month. Most of the people on the newsletter list are those that I talk to on a regular basis anyway and I figured that I could just update people on what I'm doing via this blog.

Second, I really need to crack down and start branching my skills out to other areas of self-publishing. The two most important areas are ebook and podcast. I'm not all that skilled in the arena of the audio world, but I have the tools I need to get started, so I may as well get that off the ground and see where it goes. Some of my ideas with that are to have a monthly podcast updating people on what projects I am working on. I have some cool story ideas I'd like to publish via audio as well, so that really needs to become a priority of mine.

Ebooks are an ever changing, ever evolving and ever popular entity and one that I need to get better skilled at. Black Earth: End of the Innocence needs to be turned into an ebook and I need to get better acquainted with the different device formats so I can cater to as many readers as I can.

Another item of interest is my Expired Reality series. This series has already been redone once, when I thought I knew where my writing was going. But now with the publishing of Black Earth, I finally understand the direction I want to go in with my stories as a whole. To this end, in the next couple weeks I am going to pull the Expired Reality series down off the web and out of print and make sure it is put in sync with where I want the series to go. This doesn't mean it's going to be completely rewritten, because I think the story as a whole is fine the way it is. But new content will be added and there will be some deeper character development put in. New covers will grace the books when they are published and along with the re-release of the first two novels, the long-awaited book three will be unveiled as well.

If Expired Reality was just one book, I would cough it up to my beginnings as a writer. But it's not one book, I plan on the series to span at least 12 books and it ties in with Black Earth, so I have to make sure everything is in sync to make it the very best it can be. I hope to have the new Expired Reality editions available by the end of this coming July.

With all of these projects on the table in front of me, I need to focus my efforts and get them done. I think they will benefit me as a writer and enrich the fans of my work. I plan to release the second novel in the Black Earth series late spring, early summer. I am also working on getting signed copies of my book available for purchase through my website via Paypal.

These and many more projects are in the works and I know that I will need an extra ounce of dedication and motivation to get them completed and out to the public. These are simply the building blocks to my career as a writer and a soon-to-be well known writer.


Karen said...

have you thought about putting your book in Kindle format on Amazon? I think it's pretty simple. Might be something to consider; and I don't think it costs anything extra.

Unknown said...

Karen, I actually have that down on a to-do list. The problem with Kindle is that I have to know a little bit of HTML programming to get the eBook to look right. At the moment, I am going to try and get my novel into ePub format and then go from there...