Wednesday, April 24, 2013

A Decision Is Made (or Time To Publish)

Tip of the Day: Check out my husband's new music by his band Blue Falcon! I am biased but I highly recommend his tunes, particularly the humorous "Internet Celebrity."

So, I'm going to do it.

I'm going to self e-pub a YA novel.


This is a huge step for me -- actually getting my work Out There for real readers to read -- but I'm excited! I've hired a cover artist, and just picturing my book with professional art and my name on it makes me very happy.

Why did I decide to go this route? For a few reasons:

1. Some of you may recall my post from last month where I listed all of my MG, YA, and NA works. I know some of these books need to remain in the trunk, but I also know that others are really good and I can't keep fiddling with them -- not when I have so many other ideas I want to write. In order for me to be able to move forward, I need to publish some of my "back list" and call them DONE. And if publishing companies aren't asking for them, it's up to me to pub them myself. So I will -- and I am!

1a. I have to add that I'm glad self epubbing was NOT a viable option when my first, second, oh heck first 7 manuscripts were completed because they were NOT ready for the world and I might've put books out that, well, sucked. But I'm so glad that it IS a solid option now.

2. I love writing YA, but the market is so tight that it feels extra hard to break in. Recently, I found myself shying away from new YA ideas because of this. While I've loved working on my MG novels instead, I didn't want to give up on my YAs -- and I have to say it has been so nice and freeing and fun to polish up my YA without worrying if it is "good enough" to sell to a publisher. Instead I know that I WILL get it out there for consumers to buy and read and enjoy or hate, but the power to publish is mine and the choice to read it will be in the buyers' hands.

3. I'm not getting any younger.

I am in no way giving up on traditional publishing; I'm actively working on getting my MG novel out to agents, and I have another MG waiting for revisions in the wings.

I'm also sure my passion for writing kidlit will only grow as I get my books out there for ebook readers.

Stay tuned for my first YA novel to be published in late summer...details will be coming!

Deena, Miss Subbing for Pubbing

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Soft Book Launches

Tip of the Day: My new book, SHUCKED, debuted yesterday. Check it out on my website.

In self-publishing, ebooks are forever. My first day, week, month don't matter in the grand scheme of things. No one's going to pull my book down in shame if it doesn't hit the top of the charts right off the start line.


I'm not one of those authors that has rabid fans foaming at the mouth for my next book. Okay, maybe I have a few, but not enough to drive me to #1. So here's my strategy for book releases....

1. Facebook. That's where I have the majority of my followers. Generally, they are the ones who will buy my books when they release. Not thousands of them (wouldn't that be nice?), but quite a few.

2. Book Bloggers. I maintain a separate mailing list for bloggers. When I have a new release, I send them a message, asking if they want to read my book. I've had a handful of requests, which is great.

3. Fan Newsletter. These guys get the good stuff. Look, if you want people to sign up for your newsletter, give them a reason. With my announcement, they all get the chance to win 1 of 15 free ecopies. They can also be the first to receive signed bookmarks in the mail. Yes, that slows sales a bit at first. If they don't win the ebook, the bookmark in the mail will remind them about my book.

4. Book Blast. I want to sign up for one. I've contacted one blogger, but she hasn't gotten back to me yet. If she doesn't by tomorrow, I'll contact another. This is a one-day blast on bloggers' pages about my book. It's a good, cheap, way to get the word out.

While it's a goal to sell, I also have a bigger goal - to entertain. I put a lot of my heart and soul into this book. I hope people enjoy it. :D

Megg, Miss Enchanted ePubber

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Give the Muse Fairy a Vacation!

Tip of the Day: Looking for cover art? My friend Traci directed me to - it's an incredible database of stock photos!

I'm a frantic writer. Once I get a golden idea, I write constantly. Evenings, weekends, in the car, in bed, in the bathtub - doesn't matter where or when, I must write until the book is done.

It's not an easy way to live.

Give the Muse Fairy a Vacation!
courtesy of Microsoft Clipart

And once I've vomited out the first draft of a book, the last thing I want to do is write. In fact, every time I finish a book I quit. I tell my husband I'm done. I look for jobs online. I consider other careers. I dream about going back to school and getting my MA in Museum Studies (my BA is in medieval history with a minor in evolutionary anthropology).

So how do I get the writing mojo back again? I do something new or something that makes me happy - and here's the key - it has nothing to do with writing. Writing prompts annoy me. Begging the muse to come back is futile (even muse fairies need a vacation once in a while).

Here's how I recharge:

1 - I read - but only books outside of the genres I write. This means no YA and no epic fantasy. I love drowning in thrillers (James Rollins), detective novels (Joe Konrath), romance (Tracy Garvis Graves), scifi (Ernest Cline), classics (Chaucer), nonfiction (Dian Fossey), and mystery (Elizabeth Peters).

2 - Day trip - I visit museums, zoos, and aquariums. These are some of my favorite brain vacations.

3 - Volunteer - I help out at my kids' school or with my local Friends of the Library.

4 - Catch up on TV shows - Right now I'm loving Vikings. I've also got Game of Thrones, Season 1 on Blu-ray waiting for me.

5 - Clean my house - Okay, so I'm not a clean freak. I don't clean anything but the bathrooms on a regular basis. So when I finish a book, I tend to look away from my computer for the first time in weeks and see that the house really needs a good scrubbing. I organize, donate, and toss.

By the time I've worked my way through a combination of these stress busters, I always think, "OMG, I really miss writing! Why have I been wasting my time with all of this other crap when there's a novel waiting to be written?"

You may have already guessed by now...I'm not the writer who says you must write 1,000 per day every day of the year. When I'm in the writing groove, I frequently pump out 3,000 to 4,000 words a day. It works for me. The books get written - and that's the most important part of being a novelist.

Megg, Miss Enchanted ePubber