If we were having coffee today, I’d be beaming. “It’s on me,” I’d say. “Go ahead and have a pastry too.”
Several developments have cropped up on the author front. For one, December was one of my most promising and successful months ever. We’re not talking about a big moneymaker yet, but a very good free book promotion on my first novel, The Fever, resulted in a definite uptick in sales for the other two books in the trilogy. I also saw a distinct spike in the number of pages read on KindleUnlimited. In this case, readers pay a monthly charge and they can read any of the books contained in the KindleUnlimited program. The royalty is a bit reduced but then again, these folks are a different market too, prolific readers who aren’t going to buy individual books. I tend to focus on the “prolific readers” part of that equation.
A while back I dusted off an old manuscript I wrote five years ago; it was still a rough draft. I pitched it to an agent at an author conference I attended and was invited to submit it. It was a lark. I mean, I already have a publisher who likes my writing. I wondered if maybe I could step it up a notch. I quickly worked it up and submitted it. No word in seven months. I even requested an update a couple of times, within the timeframes on the agency’s website.
Disheartened, I considered self-publishing. It is indeed a viable option. I requested quotes for the various stages of pre-publishing work. The costs are high. I was willing to invest the money, but I also decided to do a little pragmatic introspection. I already had a relationship with a small publisher, Wings ePress. It’s a small step up from self-publishing, but in many aspects, it is very similar. In the end, I decided to submit the manuscript to them. I am happy to report that I have now contracted to publish this new novel, The Hag Rider. It is not part of my published series, it is a stand-alone historical fiction book with a strong paranormal component. I’ll give you more information about it in the coming months.
Right on top of that, I’ve been actively working on a new installment of my Traces of Treasure series. I just finished the first revision pass. It is working up very nicely and in a very short time. I can see that my story development and writing is getting better with every project. I did something this week I’ve never done. I enlisted one of my trusted beta readers to give the manuscript a quick read … after the first revision. I have always waited to complete the second revision to do this. I got a glowing report. Very encouraging. I still want to complete a second revision, but if I still feel the same way, I’ll be submitting it very soon. (Oh, geez, I’m committing myself now).
Anyway, I’m hoping my progress continues into the rest of 2020, but I do know that editing and manuscript reviews of two different novels in quick succession is going to be a challenge, and it will take time away from new writing. And working on two books in quick succession is confusing … “Wait, is this Sam or is this Jack?”
Anyway, I’m stoked. Go ahead and order something else. What do you have on tap in 2020?
Thomas Fenske is a writer living in NC. Get more information about him and his current books here: http://thefensk.com