Posts Tagged ‘blog’

PromotionalServices

Howdy!
After the rousing success of my last blog post. I decided to supplement it with some specific promotional services available to indie authors. There are a lot of choices out there and we never know which ones are worth pursuing and which should be ignored.
But the first step is having the right information. So below are a series of links to various promotional services for you to look into, research, and make your own decisions. I personally have not used all of these services, so please do your research, no guarantees for sales and/or reviews can be given.

Melissa Tapp – Free Blog Tours
Monark Design Services
Sweet n Sassy FacebookSweet n Sassy Website
Book Heathens Website
Anything But Vanilla Book BlogAnything But Vanilla Promotional Services
Book Rhythm
Pure Texuality PR
Ashley Wheels Promotions
Honest Book Reviews
The Literary Whisp FacebookThe Literary Whisp Website
Like A Boss Book Promotions
Raven PA FacebookRaven PA Website

We didn’t get quite as many responses to this request as we did for the last one. But these are some of the choices available all in one place. I wish you all success!

Good luck on your adventures,

xSx

Love of darkness and light…

Advertisements

success-lincoln-quote

Success is a relative term that we all have to define for ourselves. When I started my publishing journey I had to learn about a lot of new things that I hadn’t considered before. Ironically, the easiest part of this whole process is the writing! Yes, that’s the part I find myself retreating to when the rest of this experience becomes too much.
Has my writing style and process changed since I released my first novel? Yes. You have to let it be organic. Every new experience adjusts our perspective, so our writing will always adjust to compensate.
But what I didn’t do was make a concrete assertion of what “success” would look like. I suppose we all have a vague idea of what it would look like to achieve our dreams. But when you start on the path to try and realise your ambition the whole thing takes on a new configuration.
I’m not actually here to talk about writing, but as I previously stated, writing is my go to place when I’m struggling elsewhere. So why am I here? I’m not really sure, to be honest. I sat staring at the empty post for a while… and that’s not like me. I’m one of these strange people who love the white, blank page. It doesn’t intimidate me, it excites me, because it lies there ready to absorb the adventure, to record the comedy and drama woven in the words.
But I sat and I stared… I could write about writing. I could write about publishing. I could write about process. I could talk about opinion. Today, I’m vexed by a challenge that I can’t overcome. I can’t think my way out of it. I can’t write my way out of it. With those two avenues exhausted I sit and I stare.
I can write full-length romantic fiction. I can publish novels in various digital formats and in paperback. I can create and maintain websites. I can blog. I can interact on social media. Other than the first, these are all things that I’ve had to learn since I started this publishing journey. What can’t I do? Find a way to encourage readers to engage with me as a writer.
I don’t know if it’s me. I don’t know if it’s my novels. But no matter how much I talk to and question people, and generally try to encourage dialogue, readers are reluctant. Why is that?
So I do what any sane person would do, I consult the plan for achieving my goal… hmm… What does success look like? Goals in writing can be severely narrowed… “I must edit this many chapters this week…” “I must reach this word count.” “I must write the blurb, description, design a cover…” “Come up with a character name…” the list is endless. But because it can be divided into so many segments it’s easy to focus on each task and ignore the big picture.
At first it’s just a wonder to see your book on Amazon! Then it’s amazing to see the red line on your sales dashboard graph move at all. All of these little feats become cause for celebration. Mastering the tasks in themselves can feel like climbing mountains and reaching summits. What do you do when you’re over the mound of learning, and comfortable enough in the process, then realise that you’re lacking?
You try to find a task to complete… but there isn’t one. You can’t achieve a task toward a goal when you don’t know what success looks like. I do wonder how other indies measure their success, is it in sales? Maybe its in monetary terms? Or maybe it’s the number of dedicated fans that they have?
Success is relative, but I still don’t know where it stands in relation to me… could it be hiding around the next corner? But if you’re standing on the road alone, when is it time to accept that you’ve taken a wrong turn?

Good luck on your adventures,

Scarlett

Explicit Instruction

 

No one keeps a diary anymore, do they? I don’t mean a calendar of appointments and things to do, I mean a journal of their day’s activities and their feelings about them.
I started this blog because I published my novel. It’s as simple as that. I thought it would be helpful to me, and to others, to learn about the journey of self-publishing. But it hasn’t turned out like that, has it?
My vision was that I would keep a record of what I did, how successful it was, and whether or not I would do it again. But almost none of that has taken place.
I talk about my books, about the process, about how I fret over it and over reviews and over… well a long list of things. I’ve written about the highs and I’ve written about the lows, I’ve written about the in-between too.
So I’ve been trying to establish, within myself, if I should alter my practice. Should I be more methodical about what I’m doing? Would it be more helpful to others if I charted my precise course? I don’t know.
Just as every writer’s process is different I’m sure that every indie publishing adventure is different. For starters, I don’t promote anymore. Well, I suppose I do, in that I’ll talk about my books if they’re relevant, and I try to maintain a frequent presence online. But I don’t trawl through the zillions of marketing sites promising to make me an overnight success. I write, I publish, then I go round on the merry-go-round again.
I would happily talk more about my writing process. But I am not a lecturer. I don’t have a career teaching creative writing. My experience is hit and miss, trial and error, and practise, practise, practise. I don’t want to preach at you, and what works for me may not necessarily work for you.
Writers of centuries gone by had diaries, or they wrote an abundance of letters to loved ones. Scholars now pour over both to try and delve deeper into the minds of those who created the classics. Blogs are the new diaries and letters.
Not that I think for one second that us indie writers are re-inventing the wheel, and we’re certainly not re-writing the classics. But just as archeologists dig up the homes of long-forgotten families and try to piece together their lives, we here are leaving a record.
All writers, not just indies, are leaving a record of life, and love, and aspiration, that will resonate down the centuries. If you believe that humanity doesn’t become extinct in some massive ball of fire after an asteroid strike, or a cataclysmic World War, then in hundreds and thousands of years time when our planet is inhabited by androids and space travelers, someone will want to know what it was like, here, now.
In our own way we’re creating a vivid time capsule. One day our technologies will be obsolete, perhaps they’ll be forgotten in the maelstrom of our perpetual advancement. Then, one day, a thousand years from now some distant descendant will pick up your Kindle, or your iPhone, or something equally benign, and will manage to free its data. What does your device say about you? What does it say about society in the burgeoning twenty-first century?
Bear in mind that you’ll be long gone so embarrassment won’t feature. Those naked pictures you took to send to your boyfriend might educate our future selves about human anatomy, chances are we’ll all be cyborgs by then.
Our romance novels will probably lead them to believe that the planet at this time was inhabited by a profusion of billionaires who liked kinky sex, and that we had a myriad of thirty year old virgin women who had never achieved orgasm.
Smile if you like, but stop and ask yourself this: if our fiction paints an inaccurate picture of how we truly live… just what were the Bronte family really up to?

Good luck on your adventures,

xSx

Something a little bit different today folks. While in the melee of getting ready for my book launch, a topic which I started a discussion on here was also addressed by a fellow blogger here.
Let me say right now that I have no answers. I struggle with the issue myself but it’s worth further thought. I’ve used Amazon for years, since it started, since before it was the Amazon we know today and their only business was books – physical books. So I have to admit that I have an affection for the company.
But recently there has been so much controversy surrounding them that it is difficult not to sit back and think. Should we be loyal to Amazon? They provide us with low cost goods, they offer a service in delivering those goods, and I have to say that in my dealings with Amazon through the years any frustrations were – for the most part – dealt with successfully.
But it’s bigger, stronger, and much more aggressive than the cosy friend it seemed to be in years gone by. Why do they get away with it? They’ve been partly to blame for the closure of smaller bookstores, there was a time I practically lived in Borders. They don’t pay their taxes, the rest of us have to. Last but by no means least is their conduct regarding pricing, publishing, and their increasing control over an ever shrinking competitive arena.
I’m a writer. I publish on Amazon. I’m not fool enough to be ignorant to the platform they offer. I would never have been able to reach the customers I have through my own privately run website, or even through a smaller online retailer. I’ve used Smashwords too and though they distribute to various dealers their sales numbers are nothing on Amazon’s. I have readers in all but one continent. I would never have achieved that on my lonesome. Surely I must be grateful to Amazon for that, and I am.
But I find myself experiencing Amazon in different ways. As a writer I am ecstatic to have the reach they provide. As a reader I am thrilled by the vast choice they offer. But as a citizen and a consumer more generally, I am dismayed at their lessening morality.
All of this I suppose comes down to one unavoidable truth, life isn’t fair. It should be fair. Amazon should use best practice to ensure that the reader, writer, publisher, and distributor are given equal voice. It always vexes me that I have no control over the pricing of my own work on their website – you wouldn’t find that in many other product driven sales contracts. Fine, if they want to set the price then they buy from me wholesale. I give them a number of novels to sell, then they pay up front, after that do what you want Amazon.
Amazon should pay the appropriate tax, they should exist in an equal society with the rest of us. But that’s just it, we’re not equal and in this world size means power. It means making your own rules, and the rest of us have to lump it. Life isn’t fair.
So while Amazon continues to steam ahead the rest of us have little choice but to follow. In my discussion post I likened Amazon to a drug dealer. If your drug is reading books, then in this day and age there is one place you will keep coming back to in order to obtain your drug of choice. It doesn’t matter how much you like or dislike the dealer you still need a fix. Life isn’t fair.

Good luck on your adventures,

Scarlett

dog window

 

Hello everyone!
In telling myself that I should only blog when I have something amazing to say has left for a bit of a drought. But I have news today! Actually, I have three pieces of news, and I’m not sure which to go for first… hmm…
Ok, number one, I sent out my first newsletter today! Yay! I got there, I got it out, and I delivered as promised. As well as being proud of the accomplishment, I want to make sure that everyone who signed up got their copy, which is why I’m bringing it up. If you didn’t get yours, you can go to my website and fill in the contact form. I’ll make sure I’ve got you signed up for future letters, and be sure to forward your copy of today’s to you… special treat included. So that’s news one.
News two is that Mistake Me Not is now available in paperback. So if you want to keep it for posterity, nip on over to Amazon, and order your copy today.
Lastly, I want to remind everyone that Rivals ON AIR is free this Sunday on Amazon. This is a one day only deal, so don’t miss out. It’s a contemporary romance, details on Amazon, or at my website. I have also created a brand spanking new cover for the occasion, hope you like it!
Now I’m done with my news I’ll leave you to your lives.

Good luck on your adventures,

xSx