I did not do any marketing for Seals of Abgal prior to its publication on 30 December 2012. Even now, apart from the odd tweet here and there, I still haven’t. I should know better. After all, I’ve been researching the world of indie publishing since the start of 2012. However, this writing thing is something that has brewed inside of me since age twelve and I have now finally given in to it–properly given in to it–and I’m still basking in the afterglow.
Don’t get me wrong. This wasn’t me doing something because it’s on some bucket list. Writing was never reduced to a mere number on a list. It was a lifelong dream, something I yearned for, something I felt intimately connected with, but never thought I had the ability to do. I still don’t think so, and yet I did it anyway. I took a chance and risked everything and I jumped. The result was surprising and wonderful and unexpected. People who have read Seals of Abgal are raving about it. I already received two five-star reviews on Amazon and a detailed review on Scott Wieczorek’s blog. Even those who helped me, my beta readers, my proofreader–they all loved it.
But the sceptic in me took everything with a pinch of salt. See, my aim is to make a living from writing and take care of my family. I needed Seals to be professional and I needed it to be entertaining. It had to be solid enough to build a series on and gain a readership. I couldn’t afford false praise. What I did not plan for, was for people I don’t know to be so vocal about it. Their reaction blew me away.
Not many people are aware of my novella, but the handful of sales I’ve made so far this month and the emails I’ve received over and above the reviews have been awesome. As a storyteller, this is the best thing that could have ever happened. It means I’m on the right track. It means I have to build on that and get better at my craft and write the best next story I can. And I am. I’m already working on the follow-up to Seals and it’s titled The Worthless One (working title). This time I’m aiming for 60 thousand words or in that vicinity, or longer if the story warrants it. Publication, if all goes well, is scheduled for the end of February/early March. This time there will be a release party on Goodreads and Facebook. This time I will bellow it out for the world to hear (Well, not really, but it sounded good in my mind when I typed it).
Research for Spirit Bow is still ongoing although I have already written about 40 000 words. This will be my biggest project for 2013 as I don’t see it coming in under 200 000 words. The scope alone is enormous. But it requires time. Lots of time and at the moment I cannot afford such exclusivity. However, I want Spirit Bow to be completed this year which means I will have to make a plan, but it will be a December release. December is a good month, I think. It’s a big month full of smiles and presents. I usually like Decembers. Okay, I’ve convinced myself, December it is.
As for Seals, I’m busy proofing the print version, sorting out color issues. For a novella it came out spectacular. It reminds me of the pulp books I read growing up in the eighties. My hope is that word of mouth will be sufficient to push sales. I don’t have the resources to market it properly, but will work hard on the follow-up and give it my all, and send out a tweet or six, now and then. I’m in it for the long haul, folks. This is me now. Even if it takes forever, I’ll continue to write stories and hopefully I’ll get better at it. One thing is for certain, I must make up for lost time.
To all you wonderful readers who bought Seals of Abgal. Thank you. I appreciate it more than you will ever know.