I was walking the dogs this past Saturday, and feeling triumphant having finally managed to get more words upon a page. So I thought I’d film a little video update (see below).
I think I might it a regular thing because a) it’s social pressure to actually write, b) it’s a fun way to update you and c) after writing fiction all day, I’m not always chomping on the bit to write a blog. A video post, however, that’s enough creatively different to make it fun!
So, hi! This is the first video on my new YouTube channel. Sign up if you wish (and click the bell button so you’re actually notified of uploads) and join me. And please tell me what you’d like to see – of course there’ll be book updates and news on sales etc, but anything else? Just ask and I’ll try to pop it into a video.
I don’t know if there was ever a time I wasn’t creating stories. I also don’t think there was a time when I wasn’t longingly dreaming of farming. Whilst being a writer was only a mere notion (I mean, MOST kids get creative with stories at some point), farming is in my family’s blood. Though I didn’t actually grow up on a farm, I spent many holidays staying with my grandparents and whiling away happy hours hunting eggs, helping with lambing and being a wildling amongst the vast acreage of pastures, meadows and fields of food.
So, other than writing, I want to be a farmer. In fact, writing COULD HELP me to become a farmer. I still have my granddad’s 40 acres of land. I still have the urge to move there with my husband and work the land. BUT…as with all things. MONEY. It seems ridiculous that to live off the land, sustainably, cheaply, enviromentally friendly, you need a lot of money to begin with….but that’s another subject entirely.
To add a little non-writing interest to this blog, I thought I’d share some of my farming progress every Friday. Though I’m in the suburbs that hasn’t stopped me and in addition to cats and dogs, I have chickens and quail too. Yep, fresh eggs EVERY day…and a homegrown roast now and then too. Also, it’s not exactly ‘non-writing’ as nature continues to inspire me and, as any of my readers know, my books are filled with creatures whether in sentient alien form or just a descriptive passage to enrich the world-building.
The video below is my intro on the Brimwood Farm YouTube channel, but I’m excited to share my adventure with you guys here, so look forward to Farming Fridays from now on.
Numbers, figures, sales, sub-totals, costs, profit margins – they’re all an essential part of business. As self-publishers it’s vital to keep an eye on these things. And as any indie author knows, those KDP graphs and publishing interfaces can be extremely alluring, especially when things are on the up. But what happens when there’s downwards movement or, worse, nothing appears at all?
I’m the first to admit that I’m horrible at marketing. I hate talking about my work. People are surprised to discover I’ve written books because I’ll rarely offer it up in conversation. I don’t have money to throw away on Facebook ads (trust me, I’ve lost enough already), my AMS movement has tanked, and I can’t get involved in reader groups because, you know, I’m busy writing and I can’t concentrate on fiction at all these days. So I’m not about to jump into places like Goodreads and pretend I’ve read stuff just to get a following.
Yes, I can Tweet a link now and then, send a newsletter and buy a few paid ads (though, honestly, the effectivness of these is declining at a dramatic rate). Also, I’m NOT in Kindle Unlimited as many of my readers are on other platforms such as GooglePlay, so without that Amazon exclusivity, there’s little in the way of pricd promotions available.
All sounds pretty bleak right?!
Yep…and for me, someone who struggles with anxiety and depression, each hit makes it harder to keep going.
So, the plan?
Concentrate on creativity.
You will hear over and over that the best way to market is to ‘write the next book’. Although I agree this definitely WAS true, and could still be effective, the indie world has evolved a lot and it’s now a very crowded place. Simply publishing book after book after book doesn’t cut it anymore if there’s no marketing at all. I’ve done this…talk about the not making a splash, i didn’t even get the ripple. That’s why newsletters, ads and promotion become so important.
BUT it’s easy to get bogged down in numbers. To get depressed with a lack of sales. To lose heart when reviews not only fail to flood in but don’t even cross the double digit line even after six months.
So what to do?
Don’t sweat it. Go back to basics and write. After all, if there’s no new content, there’s nothing actually to promote.
What does that mean for me? I’ll be taking the pressure off. Can I write 1500 words a day? Yes. Should I write 1500 words a day? Probably. Is forcing myself to write 1500 words every day a good idea? Not for my mental health it isn’t. The same goes for checking sales, worrying about making profit, trying to find, book and stack ads.
Of course, I WILL need to look at these things from time to time. But there’s so much stress in running a business it’s important (for me anyway) to remember that, ultimately, I do this because I want to create stories. And to do that I need to be able to sit down and let my characters into the driving seat without me, as a passenger, shouting ‘Hurry up. There’s words to write, there’s books to sell.’
Tarmachan is here! It’s been a ‘journey’ in getting the cover artwork done but the fantastic Steven, at Novak Illustration came up trumps and produced something that captured everything I wished for. As is increasingly becoming the norm, Amazon had Tarmachan up in no time – including the ‘Look Inside’. So, without further ado, here’s the blurb and the appropriate links.
Things are not always what they seem…sometimes, a palace is nothing more than a gilded cage, and a chance at freedom is no more than another trap.
Now fifteen, Lyllia realises that her life of royalty and privilege is actually one of oppressive restriction behind castle walls. The Crossover Festival draws near, and she hopes that with it, comes freedom. But her debut takes a dark twist when her confident disappears, leaving Lyllia to struggle through the festival’s ceremony alone.
Reunited with her friend, yet kidnapped from her home, Lyllia must fight to escape the clutches of her captors. But, out in the Northern Wilds, she discovers her daydreams have been childish musings compared to the real terrors lurking shadows. Here, trolls, death lights and shadow stalkers lay.
As her new world unveils itself, Lyllia learns there’s a fine line between right and wrong. It seems that the life of a princess is rife with twisted lies and betrayal.
Tarmachan – Book One of the Gathin Chronicles is available at:
Though I might have finished writing Tarmachan (Book 1 of the Gathin Chronicles) last month, before any major editing takes place, I sent it out to a couple of betas. I’ll be honest – I rarely use betas. For an established series, CRYO or RENOVO, for example, the characters have already been created, and the stories are percolating in my mind. Of course, when I release a new book, I’m SUPER nervous because you don’t know if everyone will like what’s coming. However, the story is already established. With a new series, however, I like to test the waters.
There are all sorts of questions that run through my brain; what if it’s just 50,000 words of crap? What if I’ve gone off on a strange tangent and readers don’t ‘get it‘? What if my lead is just horrible and unlikeable?
Of course, I hoped this wouldn’t be the case and….having heard back from my betas…I’m happy to report Tarmachan is a THUMBS UP! To be fair, I hope that a young tom-boy lesbian princess breaking out of the confines of her parent’s castle and being unleashed into a world of trolls, sprites, nymphs, centaurs and other creatures MIGHT just be fun not only to write, but to read. And, so far, so good. The beta’s loved Lyllia, the creatures she discovered and the journey she survived.
So, basically, this is a long-winded way of announcing that the Gathin Chronicles are GO! I’m starting on the first edit now and then it’ll be off to the editor and, with any luck, published before the end of the month. Work has also started on RENOVO book 4; there’s A LOT to do!
I’m utterly thrilled to report that Tarmachan – Book One of The Gathin Chronicles is complete! Well, the first draft anyway. It took a little more effort than I originally anticipated because a) it’s 10,000 words longer than expected and b) I ran out of steam during the past few days and couldn’t get those 3,000 words per day. But, it IS done!
It’s been really fun to write. During the Inside Evil series, the focus was on contrasting Gathin against Earth; the various lives of each doppelganger and how Gathin had made them different from their twins on Earth, for instance. Take Susan and Sesane. Both fiercely determined to avenge their daughter’s deaths but poor Sesane suffering terribly at the medieval ways of Gathin; both emotionally and physically. Yet it was both women who helped Roberta quell the Ammokra. In The Gathin Chronicles, however, I get to forget about Earth and explore the North Realm in greater depth…and that allows mystical creatures and beasts, along with the huge wolves, cats and horses, of course!
One reason for the extra 10,000 words was that, during the run up to the end, three centaurs appeared and pulled the story in a completely new direction. There are forest trolls, and mountain sprites, and water nymphs who traverse the North Realm via underground wells and hot springs.
Tarmachan is now in the hands of my beta reader. Though I don’t always send work out to beta’s, with a brand new series I like to get an idea of how well the story fits. Especially with Tarmachan, where there are some interesting characters, I want to make sure they sit right and aren’t either too bland, or too annoying. The cover art has been ordered and I should be able to reveal that in a week or so.
In the meantime, all you RENOVO lovers can rejoice because, today, I’m getting to work on Book 4!
Well, it’s been a week since RENOVO Symbiosis arrived and though I ran a 24 hour price deal for the new title, it’s now back to its normal price of $2.99. BUT – I thought it only fair to give new readers to the series a little perk; hence the new 99c price point.
I’m not sure how long it’ll last for, but if you haven’t yet jumped into this series and met Dr. Rachel Galliance, Dendrick, Silver and the rest of the crew, now’s the time to do so!
Her mission to Mars just became a fight for survival.
Dr. Rachel Galliance has a simple plan. Head to Mars,complete an 18 month rotation and earn as much as possible. She’s claustrophobic and hates space flight, but her family’s medical bills come first. However, when the mission goes terribly wrong, it becomes clear she may never see her loved ones again.
With her spaceship crumbling and the flight crew missing,Rachel must fight for her life. Stuck with a group of strangers, and stranded in an alien system, the decisions she now makes affect more than she could have ever imagined. Can she survive the RENOVO’s destruction?
Don’t miss RENOVO, the first in the series by G. Wakeling.If you like Battlestar Galactica, the Expanse or The Martian, then this space opera will have you turning the pages. Come check it out!
You can grab RENOVO for the 99c Amazon price here:
As subscribers to my newsletter know – RENOVO Symbiosis is here! I’m running a special launch price of 99c for the FIRST 24 HOURS ONLY (which actually runs out in about eight hours <- so be quick).
Here’s the cover, the blurb and the links!
Her mission was to survive. Now the odds are against her.
When Dr. Rachel Galliance and her crew were marooned on Howler, they fought for answers. Why had they been sent here? Who was in charge? Would they ever see Earth again? It didn’t take long for rebellion to begin.
But so focused on escaping the dangerous alien planet, the RENOVO crew have taken their eyes off the real threat. And in a desperate bid to fuel their way home, Rachel unwittingly leads her friends into mortal danger. Who will survive as the strange world starts fighting back?
RENOVO Symbiosis is the third novel in this thrilling space opera saga by G. Wakeling. If you love intrigue, intense conflict and aliens, then don’t miss this book!