Monday, November 7, 2011

I'm Back!

*Blows the dust off the blog.*
So. I’ve been gone a while. Sorry about that.
It was a semi-unconscious decision that slowly became a conscious one. Why? Well, because I put up a post telling people to download a free ebook I wrote called Baby Teeth. It cost readers nothing, and I was going to send money to Ethiopia Reads every time someone downloaded the book. I liked having it at the top of the blog, because I get something like 900 visitors a month, and if they all downloaded it, how cool would that be?
I thought this was a cool, win-win kind of thing.
Turns out… well, I’ll come back to that.
There were two problems with that plan. The first was trying to get Amazon to price-match. I made the book free on Smashwords, went over to Amazon, told them that the book was free elsewhere and… they did nothing. A whole lotta nothing. Even though everything I read on the subject said they would match prices, post-haste.
I had friends and fans get involved. Nothing. Do I know why? I do not.
Eventually, I gave up and told everyone they could go ahead and download the book free on Smashwords.
And I gave away? 44 copies.
Now, what happened to those copies is a total mystery. I only know of two people who downloaded it. One sent me a really cool Tweet telling me she liked it. The other said she had a young baby and was afraid to read the story.
What I learned from that is the conventional wisdom about getting your ebook to be free on Amazon doesn’t always work.
I suppose I also learned that if you try to give away a book on Smashwords, you’re probably not gonna get a lot of takers.
(As I write this, Baby Teeth is still free on Smashwords, and it will probably remain so until I feel compelled to change that fact. Feel free to tell Amazon. Or go download the book. It’s free!)
Other reasons I didn’t write here?
Well, I did three guest posts at various blogs, promoting my novels Mercy and Blood Calling, and my novella, The Werewolf Solution. I also decided to take advantage of the fact that Halloween was coming up, and do a ton of book promotion on Twitter.
And I finished writing the second novel in the Blood Calling trilogy. I just sent it to beta readers, and the reaction has been great so far. That’ll be out by the end of November. I’m hoping before Thanksgiving.
I’m putting together two more books before the end of the year. How to Make a Movie, and How to Find a Job. I’ve got them mostly written, and I’m editing and collating and getting them some bonus chapters, and they’ll be out by Christmas.
For those of you keeping track, that means I’ll have eight books available by Christmas. Feel free to stock up. Or give them to friends as gifts.
And then next year, I have plans to write (or edit) and release six more ebooks. They are:
The Enforcers: A Blood Calling Novel (The final (for now) volume in the Blood Calling trilogy.)
Emma Goes to Egypt: A Blood Calling Novella/Novelette (I’m not sure how long it will be yet… I’m hedging my bets on this one.)
But the Third One Was Great: Volume 1, 2, and 3 – my super-fun horror blog will be revised, expanded, bonus-chaptered and released in three massive volumes.
A sequel to Mercy is also in the works.
After that, I don’t know.
I’ve had a couple requests for a sequel to The Werewolf Solution, but as you can see, I’m a little booked (hah!) at the moment, and I don’t know when I’ll get to it.
For that matter, if the Blood Calling series suddenly became a huge hit, I’ve already got ideas for a second trilogy, and all these other books will be shoved aside.
My goal is to get those first 14 (!) books out by the end of 2012, and after that, I think it’s time to reevaluate… everything.
(Come to think of it, I’ll probably have more than 14 books up, as I plan on releasing all the Blood Calling stories together in one big volume, and I’ll probably do the same with But the Third One Was Great.)
Ultimately, I can see myself taking a couple of paths.
By the end of 2012, I’ll have a lot of different material available, and I’m sure that something will lead the pack in sales. Whatever breaks, I’ll see what I can do about making more of them.
And what if nothing breaks?
I have no idea. At that point, I think it might be poetic to sit down with the first prose book I ever wrote, The Werewolf Solution, and craft up a big, ambitious sequel. Really go all-out.
And if nothing breaks while I’m doing that? Well, then maybe it’s time for me to take a break, and give the books some time to find their audience. Or maybe I’ll finally sit down with my wife and we’ll write the adoption book we’ve been talking about for four years.
March of 2013 will mark two years I’ve been putting things up for sale. It will be very interesting to look back at this post and see What Really Happened.
In the meantime, I plan to blog a big more. I’ll probably put up some more fun blogs about what TV I’m watching, and a few things about what I’m reading and listening to. And I’m also planning to throw up some of my How to Find a Job chapters as I write them, because my post on trying everything to find a job is far and away my most popular blog post.
Clearly, people are looking for answers.
And sometime in 2012, I’d like to go back to doing what I used to do a couple of blogs ago. I would take a month, and do 30 posts in 30 days. It was always a lot of fun, and when I was in a writing slump, it always got the juices going, because I had to put up SOMETHING so SOMETHING had to come out.
And what else? Nothing else today. But watch this space. Things will happen.

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