It’s been quiet here, but I haven’t been quiet. Here’s what’s been going on. I’ll try to be brief.
Shortly after my last post, two things rocked my world.
First, I saw an article that distilled the common aspects of mega-successful authors. Details will come later, but the result of the article was my thinking: I can do this! So I modified my plans, broadening my scope and researching the new requirements and figuring out how it would all work together. It went well, and I liked it.
Then, I found Joe Konrath’s latest, self-published book as a featured book in the central library. Holy wow. It was always technically possible, but it didn’t happen in practice enough to warrant the effort to make the dots ready to connect. And yet, here it was. Suddenly, I was modifying not just my plans, but almost everything to be able to follow this path myself. The research and plans and changes took a long time, but they were worth it.
The result has been five significant areas of change.
- The kinds of books I’m creating. While I have dabbled in writing children’s books and I’ve always entertained ideas of writing memoirs, I had previously decided to focus only on adult fiction. Though adult fiction is still the main product of my work, I now plan on writing and releasing books for all ages, together with memoirs and possibly other non-fiction.
- The content of my books (front and back matter). I’ve extensively researched the front and back matter of successful authors, and I’ve decided to modify my previous minimal approach to use the best ideas of what I’ve found.
- The covers of those books. While I love the current design of my covers, I think that the benefits of adopting a more “traditional” look are compelling. Though I haven’t made a firm decision yet, I’m leaning toward adopting all new covers in the style of WMG publishing.
- Print editions. The new front and back matter combine with a modified layout to result into print editions for my books. This is also still being finalized, but it’s on the way.
- My organization, again. My analysis has highlighted the difference between treating writing as a hobby and treating it as a business. My tools and organization have been trending toward the hobby end of the spectrum, and in adopting a more business-like approach many of them have come up lacking. This is well traveled ground, however, so the migration this time was easy and, hopefully, final.
Now, after more than a couple months, I’m at the end of all these changes. The research is done. The plans are done. The implementation is nearly done, and complete enough for real work. It’s time to turn everything loose. I may not become a mega-successful author, but I’ll have all the pieces in place for it. And I just might.
I’m trying to kick things off with a new book.
Coming soon …