if Stephen King wouldn't do it, I won't do it
Okay, in actual fact, I've never heard that, never with King's name anyway. But peeps keep floating in comments about how a trad pubbed midlist author doesn't do certain things. So Indies shouldn't, cause it makes us look professional (if'n we don't).
Personally, I call that a crock of shit.
Trad pubbed midlisters (TPMLs from here on) have rules to follow, like Never Piss off a Potential Customer, and so on. And if they did, they'd get their asses chewed by their agents and editors and everyone else. It's why so many TPML books are formulaic, and it's why so many readers love the originality and personality in indie novels.
Shouldn't we let some of that originality and individuality shine out of our asses, too? Sorry, I meant shine out of our blogs.
So what makes indie's look professional? Well, great books, great covers, great storylines, good editing. Those kind of things.
I'm not saying you should be like the monkey at the zoo and fling your shit at people, but I am saying with no one breathing down on indie's backs, its refreshing to be honest, and up front, and just be yourself.
I've noticed indies can be a bit "defensive" about certain things, like there are rules
- don't talk about money
- don't bad mouth other indies
- don't bad mouth the trad publishers
- act like you've got a big stick up your jacksie
Some of that's just pish. Here, look, I'll break some rules and the world won't end.
I published Invictus on Smashwords on Sept 10th, 2010. I put it on Amazon a month later. It is now the 16th of February and I have to date sold (oh my God, don't reveal your sales figures)
Yep, that's all.
40 on Amazon, 10 on Smashwords.
Amanda Hocking I aint, huh?
So, what went wrong? Well, it was actually quite a lot of things.
For one, the cover. I like the cover, but it is very plain, very bland. Invictus begins in medias res and never comes down. I want the cover to reflect something of the story, whether it be the airships or the demons, the revolvers or the clockwork robot assassins.
For two, the pacing. Invictus, as I just mentioned, is fast. Very fast. It races from attempted royal assassination to the sinking of the Titanic, setting fire to half of London and crashing an airship along the way. The pacing needs to be reconsidered, and one or two slower moments introduced.
For three, the editing. Which will be a post all on its own.
For four, the marketing. I released Invictus in October, separated from my wife in November, and am just returning to my book in February. All the marketing Invictus had was word of mouth, and that didn't happen much. Not surprising, with the points addressed above.
So, I will work some more on Invictus, which I was planning to do anyway, regardless of how well it was selling. I'm working on the expanded edition, due out hopefully sometime in 2011. If you've already bought Invictus, I'll give you a discount of $2.99 on the new edition, even if you only spent $1 on the Invictus you bought.
I'll also be addressing the problems in Invictus, and re-releasing that.
Oh, look, the world didn't end xx