Monday 5 August 2013

Three Months Down: A self-published author's thoughts.

It's been three months since I released Blank Canvas on Kindle and they have indeed been fun months. I was very nervous about it all before the big day; May 10th 2013, when it all went live (so to speak), but now I'm calmer.

I can see that I haven't burned up the charts and stamped my foot on the e-publishing industry with a shore tread and screamed; 'I WILL NOT BE DENIED', but then that wasn't really going to happen anyway. I knew I would find it difficult to make a lot of sales, that success, real, overnight, huge, staggering success, was highly unlikely and I now find I never really expected it. I may have thought, 'wouldn't it be cool if I sold X amount', but really, in the end, I'm happy with how it's gone.

I have come to a point where I can look around and say, 'I have tried, I've enjoyed trying and I, in fact, will certainly be trying again'. I can say I haven't made an impact, a splash, a defined financial return, but I can also say that it really doesn't matter. The object was to get my work out there and to share it. To get past any feelings of fear and anxiety and put something I'd spent a long time writing onto the market.

It has been, in all the quarters that really matter, a resounding success.

I was stunned when I received my 'proof' paperback copy of  Blank Canvas just how many mistakes I had left in the book, how many things I could improve! I did feel embarrassed and self conscious thinking of the people that were reading the book that faced the 500 or so errors in the original release edition. It stung badly that I could have been so incredibly fallible, but I took the time to correct the mistakes, reload the contents, find the art work for the paperback and then release a better book.

These are all things I should have done first, but then this is a steep learning curve and I've never been a great student. This means I make mistakes, screw things up, pass over what should be obvious, and yet it also means I improve continuously for I have so many flaws to correct.

With Blank Canvas out there and people saying some nice things about it I suddenly felt the urge to get my next book right become intensified and so I have been focusing on that. It's been a big job, plenty of rewrites, details added, extra content bolted on top. These were all things I knew I would need to do but with Blank Canvas out of my head I found it easier once more to tackle the next project.

I have a few ideas about how I want to maybe increase the profile and sales of Blank Canvas, I have a few ways of helping it maybe make a stronger case for itself, but in the end my little book is an incredibly important piece of work... To me. It has shown me how to think and feel, shown me that my belief that I have what it takes to make it as a writer is not misguided or foolish, no, just a goal I must still strive towards.

I've read some fabulous reviews for the book, been shown so much support and love by the twitter community that it still makes me slightly wet around the eyelids and I can honestly say I feel it has made me a better writer.

I'll be doing some promotional material over the coming weeks in the hope of pushing Blank Canvas into the light so that more people can read my work. Obviously I hope it works and that the book takes off slightly more, though I doubt it will, but that is (as I've already said) okay. It has shown me what I want to do in life isn't unreal or perhaps out of reach.

Blank Canvas has shown me I have to stretch a little higher, a little further, a little longer and that with ever time I nearly get my fingers to that golden loop of success I am increasing my chances of being able to grab that sucker and just start really swinging.

I'd like to thank all those that have supported me, retweeted me, written reviews, plugged the book and tweeted to say they were/have/intend to read Blank Canvas. It's been a wonderful experience and one that I have every intention of repeating as many times as I can.

Thank you for reading and see you soon.

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