Creativity

Is not here this week.  There is nothing that I am extremely passionate about as far as books go.  I will be back next week with something profound!  LOL!  Or maybe not.  Just something helpful.  Any ideas that you may have I am welcome to them.

Until Next Week,

Kayresia

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Marketing

Blast!  Free.  Ninety-nine cents or more.  How do I price my book?  Mark Coker, founder of Smashwords.com says the median price for your book is ideal at 2.99, up to 5.99.  I will not disagree.  I have had mediocre success at 2.99.  Gift of Life is priced at 3.99, and I am only testing the waters with this one.  I have had several suggestions.  “Make the second one free, then put out the trilogy at 12.99.”  Hmm loving it.  However, not all have the patience to read a trilogy, and I wonder would it even sell.

From simple emails, to flyers and business cards, I have spent way more money than my books have yielded.  But I still know marketing is important, and I press.

You can pay marketing folks a butt load to do this for you, but can’t really appreciate what they do for you unless you give it a go yourself.

This blog is one of my marketing tools.  I started this because I didn’t have one, and well now, I’m glad I did.  I now have somewhere to share with the world my successes.  Facebook, Twitter, Linked In, and others are awesome just to drive people to your book page.  The hardest part of Marketing (for me anyway), is trying to find the time to get it done.  I have committed to writing in this blog every week, and that’s a start, but I could be doing so much more if I had the time.

Since I am on the subject, I am deeming today, “Self-promote Sunday”.  Maybe you should to.  Get out there and talk about your work.  Reach out and touch someone with your shining personality.  I am definitely going to give it a shot.

For the entire month of July, I am selling my books at a discounted price.  The first one is free.  Yup.  Free.

All four of my books are now discounted at Smashwords.com. SSWIN for Baby Farm, SSW50 for the other 3. HappyReading!

Until Next Week,

Kayresia

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Revisions

How many times do we need to revise our books before it gets published?  That is a question no one can really answer.  When I first wrote Gift of Life, I put it away for about a month or so then re-read it, making note to save the file as GOL2.  That’s what we all do right?  I mean naming our files.  I made some changes to the story itself, and put it away again.  The next time I opened it, I read some things and thought, “Ew.  What was I thinking?”  And made more changes.  Throughout all of this, I wasn’t keeping a timeline of what was going on in my story, yet the revisions continued.  It took a while to straighten my timeline out, and almost two years later, thinking I was ready to go on and have someone edit for me, I sat down and read it again.  After eighteen (Yes that many) revisions, I was still not 100 percent happy with it, but it was at least ready for an editor to take a look at it.

Five months and two more revisions, it was ready.

Yay!  I thought.  I was just published in March, and I bet if I sat down and read it again, I would find more things I don’t like about it.

So, there is not a real answer to this question.  So my advice is, do not rush to publish.  Take at least a year on your manuscript (If it is a full length novel anyway) and make sure you don’t hate what you’ve written after someone has downloaded it.  Then it is too late.

I read my first in my Baby Farm Series yesterday and even after all this time, I found things that my previous editor missed.  Ugh!

Well, until next week,

Kayresia

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Real Writers

I have been writing since I was fourteen years old.  My imagination has been going almost non-stop for 31 years.  Yeah, I’m not a kid anymore, but writing novels has always been a dream of mine.  Now that I am here (Thanks to the internet), I’m not gonna turn back.

I’ve learned a lot about myself and my bad habits over the last two years, and I still yearn for greatness.  I dreamed of being Stephenie Meyer, and J.K. Rowlings before either of them even appeared on the scene.  Yes, I would love my Baby Farm Series to be the next Twilight or Harry Potter, but I lack the money to hire an agent, and the self publishing packages offered by anyone other than Smashwords are just out of reach.

Okay on to my topic.  What is a “Real Writer?”  I am one, or so I presume myself to be.  I work like a dog on my stories, and spend what I can afford on marketing and editing.  But people still have a hard time believing I’m actually published.

“Oh you write?”  “Do you have any published books?”  I say yes, hand them my business card, and give them the coupon code for a free copy of any one of my books, and it seems to end there.  My normal response to the doubters is, “Google me.”  People only seem to believe what they read on the internet or what the media says, so why not?  Google me.

We all have been there at one point or another.  My own mother didn’t believe in me, and I wish she was here to see me now.  My father is just now trying to understand.  Ugh!  Sorry.  Personal feelings coming out.  I digress.

So all of you other indie authors out there besides me, I just have to say one thing.  We are all Real Writers.  Not everyone will like what we write, nor will they always accept what we do.  But don’t give up.  Live your own dream.  Who knows, one day one of us (many Smashwords authors already have) will achieve the dream whatever it may be.

Monetary is not what I’m speaking about.  I’m talking about every other person you meet on the street will ask “Hey, have you read the latest book by…?”  That is where we all really want to be right?  We want to know that we have entertained someone through our craft.  Real Writers.  We all are.

Question remains, are we really that good?

Until Next Week,

Kayresia

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Book Covers

Once me and would be partner argued over something as simple as a book cover.  We were working on a book together.  (Which I don’t recommend doing with your friends. Lot’s of drama and extreme creative differences can occur.)  She has her own opinion about what goes on a cover, so do I.   I won’t tell you hers, but I will tell you mine.

People.  And I’m not taking anything away from those whose opinion is different from mine.  But I feel that people on the cover of your book convey a certain feel.  I mean if you are writing romance, erotica or anything that has to do with human emotion, well people or persons most definitely should have a presence on the cover.

Flowers or any other object can say many things.  Not saying that it doesn’t say romance, it just doesn’t say feelings to me.  I mean really.  Everyone is just not that deep.

Your cover should reach out to your target audience without them having to analyze what the story is about.  Take my “Gift of Life” cover for instance.  There is no doubt in your mind that it is about a man and a woman.  A single object could mean several things.  I, being the lover of romance, would have to take extra time to read the back of the book to find out if I really wanted to read the book.

I started reading a series about post apocalyptic earth.  E.E. Knight.  Very good series which I have yet to finish.  But looking at the cover of the first book, I felt it was about a kid out for justice, watching his back the whole time.  I picked it up and was instantly in love.  Adventure, excitement and the kid with guts fought his way through to the next novel.

So, book covers.  What do you think?  Should your cover tell your story?  Or should it be something obscure?  If you are out to sell books, tell the story on the cover, for sure.  It won’t hurt in the least.

Until next week,

Kayresia

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Novellas

I have read many.  What exactly are they?  Are they ideas that fizzle out?  Are they the “Stay tuned, the rest of the story coming soon?” I wonder.

This week, I downloaded a book that I had in my library for a very long time.  I was extremely disappointed when my Nook opened the book it was only 130 pages.  “Ugh,” I thought.  “I’ll be done with this in an hour, and then what am I going to read?”

However, this one was quite good (where a lot of them are not).  My only complaint is that it left me wanting more, as lots of novellas often do.  The story moved way too fast, and me being an author myself, I felt that there was way more story to be told.  I was compelled to “fill in” the missing parts.  The couple in the story went from wanting each other, to having mad crazy relations, to planning a life together all within an hour.  Frustration set in and I wonder why people do this.

Personally, I try to give my readers the whole story.  Ups, downs and everything between.  Giving them time to get to know and love (or hate) my characters.

Needing Nita by Norah Wilson was a fantastic read.  She pulled me in from the first page, and like I said, I finished it within an hour or so.  And I wanted to know more about Craig and Nita.  I would have loved to read about the courtroom flirting.  The chase.  So, maybe Norah’s novella was to introduce herself to new readers.

Laurel K. Hamilton has a couple of novellas in her Anita Blake series.  In Micah, she fills us in on the back story of one of her already well known characters.  I appreciated that.  After I read it, I had a better understanding of why Micah was the way he was.  Yay!

But I still would love to know why people tease us with novellas.  Help me out.

Until next week,

Kayresia

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Escape

Escape.  That is what I do when I write my novels.  I’ve always wondered is that what most fiction writers do.  Fiction is such an awesome genre.  And for those of us with over active imaginations, it is the easiest for us to do.

There are various things in a fiction author’s life that will spark a new idea for a new book.  Anything from a car accident, to two people just simply walking and talking.  We never know what will spark the sudden urge of creativity; we just know that if there is a possible story to be told, we must tell it.

Sometimes, the flame starts and oh boy!  You go on for pages and pages and then, boom!  The idea suddenly smokes out.  What happens?  Did you really have an idea in the first place?  Or did you just need an escape from reality for a little while?

I have had several books (three that come to mind) that seemed like a good idea at the time, but when I got to a certain point, I was done.  Nothing else would come out.  Why is that?  Is it writer’s block or did I not really have a good idea in the first place?  I wish I knew.

Some write about real life experiences, and attempt to fictionalize it.  It doesn’t always work as it is happening.  One of the reasons I believe is that you may be too close to the situation to actually make it fiction for you, the writer.  Let the situation play out first.  Then decide if it will make a good book.  Then you can actually separate your real life situation from your fictional characters, and possibly write an excellent novel.  We’ve seen it before in lots of books we have personally read, or movies we have gone to see.

So, the key word this week is, Escape.  When you write fiction, do your research, and really create a fictional world.  You are a part of every character you create, and the main characters of your story, are often times extensions of the real you.  But because it is fiction, we can become anyone we want.  So escape.  Be free.

Until next week,

Kayresia

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