Monday, 30 January 2012

Further Agent Rejection

Morning folks,

Quick coffee break update as I'm at work.

Literally just had an email from The Ampersand Agency who very politely rejected the chance to represent me and my book The 24 Hour Jazz Cafe.

Still, that's only two so far, and I've only sent out four so we remain positive. Worst case scenario, I publish it myself on Kindle. Hurrah.

Dare to believe!

Sunday, 29 January 2012

Rejection from Agent

Morning folks,

Just a quick update because I'm keeping one eye on the final of the Australian Open tennis. Sadly, as you will know if you've read my bio, I'm a Federer fan but, as ever, he was beaten by Nadal.

Anyway, further to previous posts I sent out a little excerpt of The Jazz Cafe to four agents, as much to test the quality of my letter and synopsis as anything else. So far I've had a read receipt from Camilla Wray at Darley Anderson and a rejection from Diane Banks, which was all depressingly familiar.

Still, Camilla has yet to reject me and I'm still waiting to hear from Bang about my submission to them. I plan on chasing them up within the next couple of weeks to see if there's any news.

In other news, editing of the next novel from the back catalogue is going well and I now hope to launch it as an e-book sometime in Mid February.

Until later...

Saturday, 21 January 2012

The Writing Room Bursary

Two posts in one day! How keen am I?

Quick update. I spotted this website earlier - The Writing Room - while doing a bit of posting on another site. They are currently offering a bursary, which translates as a free editorial report. The closing date is the end of this month so I've emailed ten pages of The Jazz Cafe and a synopsis. Apparently they will inform the lucky winner by the end of February. I'll let you know if I hear anything.

I'm now on Kindle Boards!

Afternoon all,

It's a grim day here, gales and rain all the way which is why I'm inside blogging.

I now am a member of Kindle Boards and a very nice bunch they are too. I've created a page for my books, added links, photos, all sorts. I'd recommend the site to anyone who is a keen reader or, indeed, an author.

My Playground Cool product page is here. The Storyteller page is here.

Aside from that I've edited just over fifty pages of the next novel - All the fun of the Fair which will be launched just as soon as I finish editing the remaining 300 pages.

There will be a sample available via YouWriteOn shortly, which members can review.

I have yet to hear back from the agents, or from Bang, about The 24 Hour Jazz Cafe so I'll assume no news is good news.

Right, I'd best crack on and edit more pages because Liverpool are playing Bolton on ESPN at 5PM.

Until next time...

Thursday, 19 January 2012

My boss bought my book!

Hello again.

Strange day today. While talking to my manager she suddenly asked if I would sign her Kindle. I was caught off guard as I was at work but, of course, it turned out she'd stumbled across my book on Amazon, recognised my name and downloaded a copy.

I was a bit red-faced but she said she liked it and had recommended it to her colleagues. The thought of these people reading what I've written is an odd one. I love that they've bought it, but I have a professional relationship with them so it's strange to be talking to them about something so personal.

Still, I have to see it as positive as the whole point of my writing is that someone will eventually read it.

Until next time...

Sunday, 15 January 2012

Camilla has read my email

Afternoon folks,

Just a quick update today. I've sent an email to a site I found on the Amazon discussion boards which apparently promotes Indie authors like myself.

But the big news is that one of the agents I sent an email to earier in the week has read it (and quite possibly deleted it). So we shall see. And according to their Twitter feed, Bang Publishing are ploughing through manuscripts so fingers crossed.

Editing on The 24 Hour Jazz Cafe is finished so the next tasks are to send out more stuff to agents, finally sort out a Facebook page (though I might leave that until something happens with the new book) and begin editing a previous novel called All The Fun of The Fair.

It's all happening and hopefully a decent chunk of redundancy money from the NHS later in the year will allow me some free time to attack the writing full time, at least for a few months.

Thursday, 12 January 2012

Chasing the dream

Hi folks,

So, things are progressing, sort of. I'm still not making any money but lots and lots of people have downloaded my books.

After the success of my short story promo with The Storyteller (still at number five on Amazon UK as of this minute) I decided to do a free promo with Playground Cool, the full length debut. It went a bit berserk and shifted about a 1000 copies in 36 hours. Needless to say, all good. I've ended the promo now to see if it translates into any real sales as with the short story.

I've been posting quite a bit on Goodreads and the folk there have been pretty supportive with a few folk saying they've got a copy and the moderators even posting links to my book on Amazon. Top work!

I've not heard back from BANG yet about the completed manuscript I sent but fingers are still crossed. Yesterday I emailed three agents and today posted (old school) extracts and letters etc of the latest effort just because I crave rejection letters. If they do reject me I'll fire off some more just to show how keen I am.

Finally, I'm building up to joining Facebook. Pain in the arse really because I hardly have time to write this blog, post on writing forums and go to work without having to find time for Facebook. But as the wife keeps reminding me, if I become successful I won't have to work in a warehouse anymore. Thank Christ for that.

Anyway, so far I've shifted somewhere around 1400 books, mostly from free downloads. But it's 1400 folk who had never heard of me before November, so it's hard to be negative.

Until next time...

Sunday, 8 January 2012

Manuscript Sent to Publisher

Evening all,

Just a quick post to say, following on from a request from Bang Publishing, I have sent a completed manuscript this evening for their consideration.

I will keep you informed as to their response but it's all very exciting.

Friday, 6 January 2012

Results of the Amazon KDP Free Giveaway

So there we have it. My 48 hour (nearly) free giveaway of my short story - The Storyteller - has ended and I have to say the results surprised me a bit. Based on what I'd read on various forums I expected to shift a few dozen, maybe a hundred. As of an hour ago I had "sold" 556 copies! The majority of these are in America (about 380) with the rest being from the UK apart from 3 in Germany (a real surprise).

It was very satisfying to see the bestseller charts during this period as I was number 1 in my category in the UK and number 2 in the US. Sadly, within an hour of the promo ending I fell back down to 70.

But it's largely positive. I've learned that clearly a lot of folk subscribe to the free Kindle books feed and that most of these people aren't going to risk 86p of their money on a book by an author they don't know. Also, I haven't had any reviews and the promo had zero impact on sales of my full length novel.

I have no clue how to address this for the future, other than to keep doing what I've been doing and hope it picks up. But 556 people now know who I am and own a copy of my work. Two days ago, that wasn't the case so, for that reason if no other, it's been well worth it.

Thursday, 5 January 2012

KDP free promo

Evening readers,

Forgive any errors, I'm typing this on the wife's Blackberry.

Yesterday I posted a Smashwords coupon for a free download of my short story. That has so far not translated into any sales. However, I did the same via Amazon KDP last night and this has already led to almost 300 downloads - in less than 24 hours.

So thanks to those that have now got a copy of my book. It is proving useful in terms of guaging where sales are likely to come from.

Wednesday, 4 January 2012

Free Short Story!!

Evening folks,

As of now my short story, The Storyteller, is available as a free download until the 4th of February. To get it trot to Smashwords and enter this code at the checkout:


If you like it please leave a review and spread the word.



Afternoon gang,

Quick post this one as I'm at work - but it's lunchtime. I've joined Goodreads and it turns out it's actually rather good. If you're not familiar it's essentially a community for book lovers where you can recommend, review, exchange, promote and discuss books of any sort, genre, format etc, as well as list your own favourites.

The link is in this post so go and have a look, after you've bought my books of course!


Sunday, 1 January 2012

Happy New Year

Hello everyone,

First of all I hope everyone had a fun New Years Eve and I wish everyone a happy and successful 2012.

I've edited 74 pages of The 24 Hour Jazz Cafe with a view to sending it off to Bang by the end of this week, assuming I'm happy with it.

Aside from that I've done a couple of press releases which seems to have a very positive impact on traffic to the blog and on sales. Also, I'm planning an assault on the top ten at YouWriteOn in an attempt to do well in their January Next Big Author Competition. I'll keep you up to speed on that as the month progresses.

But for now, thanks for bothering to look.