…with no description why.
I’m 185 pages into editing my current WIP. I won’t go into too many details of the
ever changing plot, but it involves Atlantis and some of the gods in the Greek pantheon. I was researching Poseidon’s trident (an item that features prominently) and in the Google images search, found this gem (from Rap Genius – apparently!):
So, by the numbers, here’s what I’ve been up to:
- Contacting numerous additional travel related blogs
- Sold another book
- Got another (fantastic) review (thanks Erin!)
- Two additional blogs/websites are reviewing
- Two more people have added the book on Goodreads
- (Politely) turned down by another one of my dream list reviewers
What I Should Be Doing
- Following up with the original group I sent my book out to
…one of the top magazines I wanted
desperately to review my book passed. At least they were polite.
15 feels respectable
staring right at ya, lousy with stature.*
Additionally, a virtual friend (someone I’ve never met, but can’t wait to) not only bought my book but also shared some very kind words about it. I don’t think I realized how much I needed to hear, “I’m not much of a review writer but let me say this….I read. A lot. I am always grateful to find a book that makes me want to ignore what I have to do because I’d rather be reading. Your book did that for me. I wanted to know what became of all your characters once they left the suite.” It’s as if I still have some sort of inner critic who keeps telling me the reason I’ve only sold 15 copies to date is because the book sucks, it will always suck and why the hell did I publish it, anyway? What a colossal waste of time and money.
You’d think after 6 previously published books, (mostly) good reviews, and a producer who tracked me down to adapt one of novels for television, that I wouldn’t need much validation. However, as mentioned previously, this is new territory for me and the above words meant the world to me. In fact, they pushed me forward today to go after my ‘big gets’ i.e. the major players in the travel industry for a review.
Why was I holding back? What would waiting get me? My book IS good enough for them to read.
*pardon the Newsies reference.
Full disclosure (and I think I’ve admitted this before), when I first started writing, I wrote fanfiction. It helped me gain confidence as an author. I learned how to interact with my readers. Eventually, I left the (mostly) canon worlds I had known and created my own. I still occasionally write fanfiction and cherish the friends I’ve made through fandom. Furthermore, I would write and will continue to write in various fandoms for free, simply because I love the characters
and messing with them. Would it be great if I got paid for the activity? Sure, but I don’t think that’s going to happen any time soon. Damn me for choosing obscure fandoms.
While none of the fandoms in the Amazon Worlds universe are of particular interest to me, nor is the ‘deal’ Amazon is offering a relatively good one, I have to think it’s not as terrible as everyone is letting on. Perhaps someone will have their ideas used in a storyline for one of these shows. Perhaps someone will use the Worlds as a platform to get their ideas known or a wider audience for their work. I think if an author goes in eyes open, they won’t be let down. Yes, Amazon is using the author, but why shouldn’t the author use Amazon right back? Gain some credibility and push their own platform out there. After all, the characters and universe are not the author’s to begin with.
Do you have any thoughts on the topic?
This novel popped up on my radar a few months back (thank you, Goodreads monthly newsletter). With some time last week and in the mood to read something new, I downloaded the book. Instantly, I was drawn into the story and spent the entire weekend tearing through it. When trying to describe the novel to a friend over the weekend, I was at a bit of a loss. What made the story so good? Why was it so compelling? Why exactly could I not put it down?
The blend of history, voice, pacing, character development (and supporting cast) and originality are difficult to beat. Furthermore, the inclusion of supernatural and mystical elements really stand out. However, as I was reading, I realized the Golem and the Jinni doesn’t fall neatly into a particular category and I wondered how the pitch went for the book. It could be classified as history or fantasy. Furthermore, it’s so unique, I can’t even really say, ‘did you like this? well, then you’ll really enjoy Ms. Wecker’s work.’ Basically, just read the book. You won’t be let down.
Imagine my surprise yesterday morning when I signed in and saw that 5 had jumped to 8. As of this morning I rocked into 10 copies via Amazon, plus 1 on Barnes and Noble and 1 via iTunes! Of the 12, I can account for roughly 6 or 7, which means complete strangers have purchased my book. Yay!
Even better, my alma mater, the University of Georgia, posted my book on their Summer Reading list. Not sure how many additional sales it will lead to, but I’ll take any publicity! Especially since the UGA listserv is probably the largest network I could hope to tap into…
5 people added Room 702 on their ‘to read list’ on Goodreads!
And finally, in unrelated Ann Benjamin news, author Courtney Brandt has been tearing it up. For some reason, my YA books have been getting pinned quite a bit on Pinterest and I’m having one of my overall better months in sales. This is especially interesting as I am less active than ever on my marching specific Tumblr account (which has 5100+ followers)…
Overall, I am very happy with my progress this month. I am still waiting on official reviews from the industry professionals, but Memorial Day weekend is not the time to bother them.
So, by the numbers, here’s what I did yesterday:
- Contact 5+ industry related websites/blogs for potential book review (branching out to additional non-travel industry sources)
- Sold another book (thanks Mike!)
- Got my first review (thanks Rakesh!)
- Also, unrelated to being an author, but still an achievement – today I hit my target goal weight I’ve been working towards since March!