|Original cover art by Chris Howard|
In 4 days, DERELICT will be available for sale. I have done everything in my power to make this book as good as it can be:
- It has been through the critique mill,
- it has been revised (and revised, and revised),
- it has been edited,
- the cover art created by an incredibly talented artist,
- I have solicited (and received) cover blurbs from authors whose opinions I respect,
- I have consulted with a professional typesetter in creating the print version, with an eye toward readability and polished presentation,
- I have spent months researching and creating a simple and elegant stylesheet to format the eBook so that it works seamlessly on all platforms
There is little more I can do, other than release DERELICT and let it find its readers.
And that terrifies me.
This is the third novel I have published and my sales are such that a single book purchased makes that day a celebration. This is the reality of a fledgling writer. I know all about the difficulties of discoverability. I know there's a world of marketing advice out there and I have done much of it for my first novel in 2012.
I'm still not convinced any of the hours I spent soliciting reviews and writing guest posts, etc, did anything to drive sales. What it did was to take my time away from writing and made me a very anxious camper in tying my sense of self-worth to sales. (News flash - this was not a good place to be.)
So I'm publishing DERELICT to very little fanfare. I didn't purchase any ads. I offered review copies on Google Plus and several of my followers signed up and a few wrote reviews (thank you!). I didn't do a blog tour or spend hours writing guest posts.
I have a small mailing list of folks who requested to be there. I will let them know where they can purchase the book. I have an even smaller notification circle on G+ (again, by request). While nearly 5,000 people have me circled in G+, I doubt that will drive sales in any real sense, especially since I don't view it as a sales platform. (Same for any of the social networks.)
I'm not trying to be an Eeyore here, nor am I looking for reassurance: This is the truth of a writer, an artist, a musician - any creative person who must shift focus from the inward view of creation to the outward view of selling that work. There is an inherent conflict between those two roles. I am clearly more comfortable in the former than the latter.
So 4 days from now, DERELICT will be something that no longer belongs only to me. Yes, that is frightening. But I am also extremely proud of this book. It may be the best thing I've written.
What happens next is not really up to me.
ETA: My 'marketing department' took me to task for not letting you know that you can pre-order DERELICT on iTunes. Other sales venue links will be available by Monday, June 2nd.