Monthly Archives: July 2012

social networking…

…is stealing my life away! Begin day: breakfast in front of the computer while retweeting other authors’ books and giving my own a quick push; feed dogs; more retweeting, a look at Facebook and pootle around checking my books’ sales and rankings (who am I kidding, that’s the first thing I do when I wake up!); walk dogs; try to do some writing but get distracted by Twitter and Facebook – repeat at regular intervals.

But, you know, it is a wonderful way for authors to keep in touch and meet new friends; it isn’t all about promoting your books. Writing is a very isolating occupation, and while that’s fine and good most of the time, creativity flows better if you have inspiration, input and companionship from others doing the same as you. It’s impossible not to get caught up in the social side of social networking. The icing on the cake for me has been  ‘meeting’ some lovely people and finding new books to read.  A spin-off has been that I see myself mentioned in unexpected places now, popping up on virtual newspapers, websites etc. That has to be good for exposure.

Meanwhile I’m finding the iPad an invaluable tool. I can transfer my new book back and forth from the main computer via Dropbox, which means I can keep writing in front of the television while my partner is watching the Olympics, or slobbed out on the sofa in the morning sun or even in the garden (I know you can do that with a laptop too, but the iPad is smaller and more comfortable to hold). The sequel to The Aunt Sally Team (http://amzn.to/MgZRmW & http://amzn.to/LJvFhf – note sneaky social networking style addition of link!) is growing much faster than the original book did as a result of this relaxed approach to writing. Being able to compose anywhere, instead of making a task of it by sitting in front of the computer, is helping the creative part of my brain to get productive. And don’t get me wrong, though there is discipline involved in writing, I actually love doing it.

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KDP Select free promo part 2, sunny Britain and dog news

My first free promotion of The Aunt Sally Team on Amazon KDP Select was so unexpectedly successful (see my blog entry https://flickm.wordpress.com/2012/06/28/is-kdp-select-worth-the-restrictions-2-2/) that I ran a second one on the 18th and 19th of this month (July). Sales had been fantastic for quite some time after the event, but were finally dwindling to around 10 books per day, so I felt I had nothing to lose.

I’m experiencing another sales boost, but it isn’t as spectacular as the first. I think one reason is that the promo ran for one less day. I had only half the number of free downloads compared with last time. However, I’m still selling a pleasing quantity of The Aunt Sally Team. Some of these sales may be down to my activity on Twitter, of course, and I have noticed increased traffic on my Blog since I began tweeting, plus my other book The Sacred Marriage has picked up. But there’s no doubt in my mind that the bulk of downloads is due to the free promo.

The Aunt Sally Team: http://amzn.to/MgZRmW & http://amzn.to/LJvFhf

The Sacred Marriage: http://amzn.to/LhdwVm & http://amzn.to/Lr8JoY

I’m pleased that the sequel to The Aunt Sally Team is rolling along. I’ve done over 9,000 words and it’s beginning to come together after the sticky start. I had no idea that doing a sequel would be quite that hard: it’s very strange picking up on the characters’ lives a year on from when I began writing the first book and several months on in terms of the events in the book itself. I just treated myself to an iPad 3 with my royalties and I have to say that it makes writing a joy as it’s like a mini laptop and can be used anywhere.

Meanwhile, it’s stopped raining and Britain is enjoying lovely hot, sunny weather along with an absolute profusion of wild flowers in fields, hedgerows and roadside borders – no doubt the result of weeks of rain followed by sun. The heat is much appreciated by Isha, our rescue Saluki cross but not so much by our Border collie/Husky, Dennis, who gets very puffed. Isha has settled in incredibly quickly and it feels as if she’s been here forever. Happy days!

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cover image for The Aunt Sally Team, illustrated by Beccy Blake

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Beccy Blake’s site: http://beccyblake.com/

The Aunt Sally Team Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/MgZRmW

The Aunt Sally Team Amazon US: http://amzn.to/LJvFhf

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writing, tweeting, the indie author community and having a new dog in rainy Britain

I’ve been tied to the house for six weeks due to the arrival of Isha our new dog, a six month old Saluki/Whippet rescue dog. It’s been a very restricting time till recently. In the early days I spent the whole time she was awake holding onto the end of a lead to make sure she didn’t chase our five cats. To begin with too she had a badly upset tummy and had to be taken into the garden at regular intervals, including the middle of the night. It was something like having a new baby in terms of sleep deprivation and in the end it was easier to sleep with her so that I could get her out at the first whimper, thus forestalling any messy accidents. That led to temporary separation anxiety and Bee Gee like howling at night once we began to leave her downstairs alone (except for the company of our border collie cross, that is). Then there was the problem of exercising her while she was first with us and couldn’t safely be allowed off the lead away from the house. Add that to torrential rain and a very wet June and you can imagine the effect a cooped up running dog has had on the garden.

None of this, of course, has been conducive to writing blogs or books, or networking. Though I have made a start on the sequel to The Aunt Sally Team.

Meanwhile I have plunged into using Twitter. I’ve had an account for some months but just didn’t “get it”. It’s been a bit of a learning curve, especially getting used to how fast it all moves, but I’m now retweeting like a goodun – so much so that this morning I retweeted so many other authors’ books that I was rate limited and couldn’t tweet my own for several hours. I hadn’t realised there was a limit – though I suppose, thinking about it, that there would have to be. I know now! But it’s been wonderful to connect with a thriving community of other writers, many of them indie authors.

So now to drag myself away from blogs and Twitter and obsessively watching my hourly book sales and Amazon ranking. I have a novel to write, hopefully in time for Christmas.

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