Saturday, October 22, 2016

ARCs and book covers and things

Okay, so today I sent out some ARCs, or Advance Reading Copies. I'm hoping this gets the ball rolling on the excitement concerning HOME's debut. I had to bug some of my fellow writers for author blurbs so I could either 1. put them on the book's cover or 2. put them on my website. I freaked out, feeling like a jerk and that I was being obnoxious, but then I realized the answer will always be no if you never ask. Also, "no" is the worst thing that someone can say if you ask them to do a favor for you. So, I asked away and was surprised by the reaction and the number of authors who agreed.

I went onto my personal Facebook page and posted a notice that I was looking for ARC reviewers for Amazon and Goodreads so I'd have reviews on the book's release date, and a surprising number of my friends volunteered! Which was exciting, of course! But, naturally, I didn't want to give away too many copies, so I put a limit on the number of people on the list. And of course, there's still mistakes in the copies, and my editor and I are getting to those as we prepare the cover and that other fun stuff when it comes to publishing. I have the feeling we're going to be working on the manuscript until the day of the debut. I forgot to mention the unedited mistakes in the email to my ARC readers, too... whoops.

So, I meant to have the copies ready on Thursday, but I didn't have a lot of time to prep them, and last night was a joke, too. So, today, I finally got them ready and sent them out. An hour after I sent out copies, a friend of mine who used to beta read for me sent me a message that she had already started reading! I couldn't be happier with this news!

I've already decided that I'm not going to give out any more copies except to book bloggers. I know I'm not going to turn a profit on this book for a long time, but I'd like to contain the damage (if that makes sense). I'd just like to break even within 6 months with all the publicity I'm paying for right now, and not screw my publisher as well. I hope giving away ARCs and asking for reviews helps with publicity, which is kind of what they're supposed to do. I've got to figure out giveaways and contests and fun interactions for the readers. And, I've got to work on my next novel (hopefully a series). If I have to self-publish it, hopefully, I will have readers who will want to read that too.

This week, I also spoke to another author, who said it was in my best interest to create a "public" Facebook profile and also an author Facebook page and keep my personal one private. She was right about it, I am very political on my private Facebook account, and I don't want my readers seeing this side of my personality. I'm struggling with my depression the last few months, and I don't want that where my readers can see it, either. I'm trying to transparent about the stress of depression to help with breaking down the stigma, but I don't want to be so transparent that my private life is an open book and everyone knows what's going on, who did what, and what's causing it. I want some privacy, so if you do friend me on Facebook, please search that one out. It'll be up and running soon. Promise.

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