Jim's blog

Just finished the synopsis for The Name of the Sword:

Posted on January 31, 2014 by Jim

I just finished the synopsis for the 4th and final book in The Gods Within. So what does that mean in terms of schedule? To learn a bit about my writing process:

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I've got 3 projects in the works right now:

Posted on November 14, 2013 by Jim

The last few months have been a real push to get The Heart of the Sands out, and I hope you readers out there enjoy it. But now that it's out, I'm working on:

  1. The Name of the Sword, the 4th and final chapter in Morgin and Rhianne's saga.
  2. A prequel to A Choice of Treasons in which we meet young York Ballin at the age of twelve.  He starts out as a rotten little shit--a real juvenile delinquent.
  3. Just a Bit More Dead, the third book in The Dead Among Us.  Paul and Katherine are going to have a heck of a time as the demons get even nastier, and so do the damn faeries.

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The Heart of the Sands:
book 3 of The Gods Within is now available on Amazon.

Posted on October 5, 2013 by Jim

Yesterday, my publisher completed the last little bits of formatting, then uploaded The Heart of the Sands to Amazon. Based on recommendations from readers who viewed the preliminary cover art here, I made a few changes to get to the final cover design.  I . . .

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The Heart of the Sands:
book 3 of The Gods Within final editing is complete.

Posted on September 10, 2013 by Jim

Over the last two weeks I received editing recommendations for The Heart of the Sands from my copy and content editors: all really helpful stuff. The editing stage is now complete, which means that the manuscript is . . .

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The Heart of the Sands:
book 3 of The Gods Within is finished.

Posted on July 27, 2013 by Jim

Today I finished the manuscript for The Heart of the Sands. Now it goes to proofing and editing, then to formatting and publication.

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The Heart of the Sands:
Progress report on book 3 of The Gods Within

Posted on June 29, 2013 by Jim

The Heart of the Sands is going really well. When I write I go through periods in which I only get a few dozen words down each day, because I spend most of my time plotting out scenes and transitions and plot elements, thinking through important dialog and such. But when I get done with that stage, I know exactly what has to go down on paper, and I start cranking out two or three thousand words a day . . .

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Self-Publishing Success 4:
Marketing, how not to

Posted on January 4, 2013 by Jim

In the first installment in this series of blogs, I described my surprise when my 4th eBook, Child of the Sword, spontaneously sold almost 12,000 copies in 3½ months near the end of 2012. And that raised the following questions:

  1. What's the typical sales curve—books/day—and how will it end: by dropping off rapidly or trailing off slowly?
  2. Will I just sell a few hundred, or a few thousand, or tens of thousands of copies?
  3. What effect will it have on my other books?
  4. What does it take to get on the best-seller lists?
  5. Were my books priced right at $2.99, and what is correct pricing?
  6. What was so different about the 4th book that it sold so well and the first 3 didn't?
  7. What is considered success among self-published indie authors, a few hundred, a few thousand, etc.?
  8. What do I do to support the book as it's selling, and encourage additional sales?
  9. What did I do to sell all those books?

In the second and third installments I provided some data on 1-6. Now let's look at the last three questions.

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Self-Publishing Success 3:
Pricing and what was different

Posted on December 27, 2012 by Jim

In the first installment in this series of blogs, I described my surprise when my 4th eBook, Child of the Sword, spontaneously sold almost 12,000 copies in 3½ months near the end of 2012. And that raised the following questions:

  1. What's the typical sales curve—books/day—and how will it end: by dropping off rapidly or trailing off slowly?
  2. Will I just sell a few hundred, or a few thousand, or tens of thousands of copies?
  3. What effect will it have on my other books?
  4. What does it take to get on the best-seller lists?
  5. Were my books priced right at $2.99, and what is correct pricing?
  6. What was so different about the 4th book that it sold so well and the first 3 didn't?
  7. What is considered success among self-published indie authors, a few hundred, a few thousand, etc.?
  8. What do I do to support the book as it's selling, and encourage additional sales?
  9. What did I do to sell all those books?

In the 2nd installment I provided some hard data on questions 1-4, and in this one I'll cover 5-6. I'll get to 8-9 in later installments.

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Self-Publishing Success 2:
Hard data and some answers

Posted on December 27, 2012 by Jim

In the first installment in this series of blogs, I described my surprise when my 4th eBook, Child of the Sword, spontaneously sold almost 12,000 copies in 3½ months near the end of 2012. And that raised the following questions:

  1. What's the typical sales curve—books/day—and how will it end: by dropping off rapidly or trailing off slowly?
  2. Will I just sell a few hundred, or a few thousand, or tens of thousands of copies?
  3. What effect will it have on my other books?
  4. What does it take to get on the best-seller lists?
  5. Were my books priced right at $2.99, and what is correct pricing?
  6. What was so different about the 4th book that it sold so well and the first 3 didn't?
  7. What is considered success among self-published indie authors, a few hundred, a few thousand, etc.?
  8. What do I do to support the book as it's selling, and encourage additional sales?
  9. What did I do to sell all those books?

In this installment I provide some hard data on questions 1-4, and will get to 5-9 in later installments.

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The Next Big Thing Blog Hop

Posted on December 26, 2012 by Jim

Jenn Brozek tagged me for this fun blog hop, in which I answer some questions about my work-in-progress (WIP), The Name of the Sword, the next book in The Gods Within series. The hop started with Jenn, she tagged me and a few others, and I was going to tag William Blackwell, but he's somewhere in Ecuador, so I'm not sure if he'll be able to participate. I need to ask him what he's doing in Ecuador.

Here’s how this goes works:

Jenn answered 10 questions on her WIP, and tagged five of us. Those she tagged will answer the same 10 question on their WIP, and tag one to five more, kind of like a chain letter. So here goes:

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Self-Publishing Success 1:
What does it mean?

Posted on December 19, 2012 by Jim

Since the release of the first book in The Gods Within in late August, I've had phenomenal success with my eBooks on Amazon, selling over 14,000 books in the last 3 months. The sales peaked in late October and began to decline, but now, with the release of the second book in the series, The SteelMaster of Indwallin, sales are rising again and, as of this writing, easily exceed a hundred books a day. But when it first began to happen, and as it progressed, I felt like a deer in the headlights. I had dozens of questions about what was going to happen, and I quickly learned that there's a lot of bad information out there, including that in the KDP Community Forums. So I thought it might be helpful to others to relate my experience, and a few real facts.

Keep in mind this is just one writer's story. I won't draw broad conclusions; to do so one must have a large ensemble of data, and this is just one, single data point. But I will show what can, and might, happen for others.

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Comments (5)

Topic: JLD blog
Sort
JL Doty (Sf Bay Area, US)
JWB:

Is it just my books where you have a problem leaving reviews on the B&N site? Or is it all books?

I ask because if it's just my books, then maybe we're doing something wrong uploading the books and I'll try to correct it.

Thanks for the feedback.

Jim

5th January 2013 7:56am
jwb
Many may be like me and are unable to leave reviews. I use the B&N website. I have tried several times to leave reviews but keep getting an error message. I have tried searching the site and am unable to resolve problem. I even tried to chat with support but that site was "unavailable". I have been reading the "Gods Within" series. I have read most of the "popular" fantasy books out there and your book has to be one of the best books I have read this past year. Thank you for taking ... Read More
5th January 2013 7:01am
Jackie Mae (US)
Appreciate you sharing your experiences. I am definitely a newbie having just published my book a few weeks ago. Currently it's available as an ebook but I am preparing to upload it to Create Space as well. Writing the book was easy compared with getting it published and trying to come up with a brilliant marketing strategy. The sorry amount of sales so far leads me to second guess myself a little but your story gives me inspiration. Congrats ! My book is a Science Fiction Paranormal Romance ... Read More
29th December 2012 1:15pm
JL Doty (Sf Bay Area, US)
Laura: Child of the Sword has sold almost 11,000 copies in the US, and yet it has only 54 reviews. That's approximately 1 review for every 200 purchases. Most people aren't willing--or just don't bother--to write a review. I'm going to post additional installments to "Self-Publishing Success" to cover questions 5-9, probably 2 or 3 more posts. There's a lot of marketing advice out there, but it's really hard to be a successful book marketer. So I'm not sure what advice I can offer. Keep an ... Read More
28th December 2012 2:13pm
Laura Harvey (Perth, Australia)
Thank you for sharing this with us. Being new to Amazon kindle publishing, I am also getting a bit confused by the 'advice' received on the forums. I have four books on the site and when I offered two of them for free promo -hundreds were downloaded. Yet I have received no reviews and 'likes' and sales are minimal. Can you give me some practical feedback? Thank you. Laura
Books are: Sam from Olowaru
Toi-Toi
The Lion and the Chandelier
Dream-Time Train
28th December 2012 1:10pm
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