Wednesday 17 March 2010

A Little More Waiting...

April draws ever-so-near! Spring, April Showers and Easter eggs? Nope - at least - not in my book, pardon the pun. (Puh, not Barbados...Spring, what spring? April showers? It's the middle of the bleep-bleep dry season and, hence, Easter eggs will melt or rot).

(Today I appear to be in a bracketed mood)

April brings the release of my very first book! And I'm sitting on the edge of my seat thinking the worst...wondering if I've crossed all my t's or dotted all my i's. Did the story make sense? (too late now to change all that), should I have written it a different way? (ditto), did I forget to put something in? (ditto, again) and did I find all the errors? (" ")

I've also pushed the book, ad nauseam, to all my friends and family and insisted they tell all their respective friends and family. I've joined all sorts of groups, forums, networks (some are still a bit fuzzy in my limited realm of understanding and I still feel like a twit) and posted stuff around as discreetly and as unobtrusively as possible (maybe I need to be a little more aggressive?), all in an effort to push the book and get people to talking.

Hello? Did you say something? Sorry, must be hearing things...

And I find myself in that all too familiar place - waiting...limbo... I'm beginning to feel like the main character in my book now. Forever waiting. (Does that get your interest? Are you eager to know what happens to my heroine? Are you, are you? Well, buy the book and give it a read!!! Hint-hint-hint - - the book link won't be active until its ready, in case you wondered).

Last week, my publisher's sent me (along with very encouraging words and valuable advice) an ARC and Errata list instructions. Of course, when I got the email from them, my first reaction was WTF are they? Duh... Being a first time published writer is like learning a foreign language. Careful inspection and reading then told me everything I needed to know. ARC means, simply, Advanced Reading Copy and the Errata (I'm guessing its origins are Latin, so my statement of learning a new language isn't too far off the mark) is simply a listing of any final errors in the book. Like, duhh, right?

Carefully, I read it once, then twice to make sure (amazing how many I did manage to find) and then submitted my list. Then I thought, if I found all these errors, and missed them on all the other times, what more would the potential reader find as well? Groan, as paranoia set in. I had to forcibly put it in my head that I had done everything that was humanly possible in locating these errors, and did so to the very best of my abilities. But it still feels like I've forgotten something (like those days you forget to wear underwear and you wonder about that drafty feeling), maybe missed an error as my eyes burned and blurred having read, then re-read (I knew I should've stopped reading when the laptop nearly slipped and hit me in the face) the book for the umpteenth time (talk about ad nauseam).

Hmm, speaking of ad nauseam, I should stop now having bored you to tears with my idle prattle. I'll just go strike another day off my calendar as March marches forth to the 31st.

I've never looked forward to a new month coming...ever!

Friday 5 March 2010

A Cover, A Page and a Website

At long last, my book has a cover! I am pleased - very - with it. Although, it does take some getting used to. The girl on the cover isn't quite how I imagined my star-girl to look like. But, that's okay.

So, now that the cover is born, I can now proceed with promoting myself to the masses and set myself up for the April release. Of course, where to start?

Facebook...that handy, user-friendly site that gazillions flock to every morning, noon and night to stay in touch with the rest of the gazillions. Whether its to chat with buddies, search out long lost friends, play Farmville and Bejeweled, you name it...every next person including yourself has a Facebook account. And even those that don't will soon start to feel the enticing pull as the Facebook pheromones tickle the senses. It's as addictive as that first cup of coffee in the morning...right up there with checking your email.

So, why not start by advertising on Facebook - a dedicated page to promote The Lancaster Rule and let people Become A Fan. This week, I did just that, created a page and invited all my friends to follow me - oh wait, that's a Twitter phrase. Oops, my mistake. Speaking of which, Twitter is my next step. I've already an account with them, but try as I might, Twitter is a lost cause to me for the moment. I must be an old fashioned Twit since I'm yet to grasp the full benefits of Tweeting and Twittering, that I feel like a right old Twat! Never mind, I'm digressing here.

Facebook, I understand. However, it did take me the whole day and then the next to figure out how best to launch myself. If you've been following my blog from the very beginning, you'll understand that I've an aversion to 'public nudity' like so many out there. Launching yourself onto a public network for the world to see, well, that's pretty borderline exhibitionist there. But, I had to remember that it was for the sake of the book, and not really about me. The story is an interesting and engaging tale with unforgettable characters, if I do say so myself. The world at large needs to meet them and forget about whinging teenage vampires and the lives of troubled celebrity biographies that all start to sound the same.

Anyway, for those interested, simply type in the book's name and hit search. And become a fan like you've become a fan to almost anything that deems following or being associated to...yes, even you who will eventually become a fan of 'We Don't Care About The Lancaster Rule Blogs...' But in the event that that does ever appear on Facebook...uhm...just click ignore, thanks.

A website is my next step. Creating and designing, I understand - actually creating and designing a website, I don't. I may have been in the graphic arts world for half my life, but websites are like a foreign entity. Thankfully, I have a dear friend who has decided to help me out there. Its slow going, information-wise and what I deem to be worthwhile for a webpage, but it's getting there. Pretty soon, you can click to a link called: I can't guarantee you'll be transported to a whole new world with amazing vistas that you'll have to write home about, but you will be kept up-to-date with Lancaster Rule 'stuffs' as well as up coming books that are on my plate. At present, the sequel is being self-edited and a few bits and pieces are being added to it.

And so, there it is...the next step to becoming a household name (oh, please-please-please buy the book!!) and hopefully establishing myself as a writer. A real writer, I must stress.

However, when the first bad reviews come in...if you never hear from me again, don't be alarmed. I'll still be on Facebook, cowering under an assumed name and living somewhere in Farmville with no neighbours.