eNovels: permission to be different?

Finally telling the truth
I’ve been wrestling with an interesting choice over the last few days: Do I publish my novel as originally conceived? Or do I bow to convention and rework it to fit with the expectations of the mainstream reader?

Now don’t get me wrong – I’m not arrogant enough to think that I’ve got it all right and the Professional editor I hired has got it all wrong – far from it. I do wonder however, at the wisdom of taking one deliberately constructed style of writing and trying to turn it into something else – something popular and well understood.

I use a God-like “plane of view” approach rather than a “point of view” approach which drove the Editor mad. “I’m lost!” was a common comment.” Too much description!”. “Get on with it!”

He wanted to know everything and gulp down the story in two minutes flat. But the story is complex, non-linear and open to interpretation. There are no easy answers and I’m sorry: you won’t know everything in book one – what would I write in the six volumes that follow?

Am I too proud to hack it to pieces and rewrite it? No. The question is: is it right to do so? And do I need to? One Man’s work of art is another’s piece of junk.

As first, second and third Novels usually get tossed aside in the process of learning what the public wants (as determined by what can be easily sold) – perhaps it’s better to offer it up to public scrutiny and let people decide for themselves.

We learn by reflecting on feedback. How can we develop as artists if we are starved for years of the oxygen of criticism from the reading public?

Epublishing offers a valuable opportunity for aspiring writers to experiment. Why not take it? 

Technorati Tags:
New Authors 
digital publishing 
First novel 
Self publishing 
Web 2.0 publishing 
digital publishing

Free ebook publishing model for unknown authors?

Time to update your marketing vehicle?
photo by Linda N

Obscurity is perhaps the biggest challenge for the unknown, unpublished author – not getting ripped off by illegal sharing of ebooks.

But why should I give it away for free? I hear you cry. Yes; I know you’ve sweat blood crafting your first novel, but here’s the thing: If no one ever reads it, you’ll never make any money anyway. Now don’t get me wrong: paying customers are the acid test of whether the work has merit in the wider sense – but they will only pay if they know you exist and you’ve built a reputation.

A well-respected editor of fantasy fiction recently told me that if I couldn’t compare my writing and style to three contemporary writers, I could forget getting published via the traditional route – money is too tight and traditional publishing too risky to take a chance on an unknown author with a different style.

Yes, I know many fabulously successful authors beat their heads against a brick wall until they finally got a break – I heard recently that even J.K. Rowling had such an experience with the first Harry Potter novel. The good news is; that it doesn’t necessarily have to be that way anymore.

The market is as healthy as ever, but the routes to market are changing, which quite frankly will be like a breath of fresh air, as the traditional publishing model erodes.

Go on then: convince me why I should give my work away for free.

O.K. try this on for size: You’re going to have to write several novels to break into the traditional publishing world, and build a loyal following along the way. If all goes well, when your genius is recognised, the publisher will snap up your other novels and the rest as they say is history.

What if you give the first couple of novels away for free as electronic documents, together with those short stories you’ve written? Let’s call them viral enovels. Wrap them up in a creative common license to stop anyone selling them and let them spread across the Internet, capturing readers email addresses on the way.

Just to keep those happy who are keen to make a buck from day one, we can offer hard copies and special editions via create space or Lulu – heck we might even record some audio versions for good measure.

Hang on a moment – this sounds very much like the model which works very well for the publishers of ‘How to books’. Yes I know they are targeted at hungry crowds, but ask yourself this: If you are a kindle owner paying a small fortune for each electronic version of a mainstream author’s work – wouldn’t you be hungry for good quality fiction, which you could pick up for nothing and share with your friends?

Sound like pie in the sky? Well here’s the thing: I’ve got a 500 page novel, another on the way and six more in the series in the pipeline, not to mention a bucket load of short stories and I’m going to test the theory. The people who have read the novel loved it – one finished reading it at 3.00 am in the morning! But I’ve got two hopes of seeing it published going the traditional route: Bob and No.

And if I fail? Well I write because I love to write and if I find a niche audience along the way, who enjoy the universe I have created and the characters which people it, it will all have been worthwhile.

I suffered a massive heart attack earlier this year: I haven’t got the time to break into traditional publishing, and I don’t want to see the characters I have created die with me.

So why not follow my progress and perhaps give this method a try? For the unpublished and the unknown – it’s a no lose proposition.

Technorati tags:

Create Space
Creative Commons
Digital publishing
Ebook marketing
New author
Publish on demand
Self publishing
Viral novel

How to Use Social Bookmarking to connect with your audience

Digital Sharing

social bookmarking offers a wonderful opportunity for unknown authors to connect with an audience whilst they are experimenting and developing as writers. 

The marketing opportunities are clear (for self publishing), however I think that connection in the formative years is something that's probably always been lacking to a certain extent as traditional publishing is expensive. 

Bands by contrast have always started out playing in small venues where they can develop with their audience and social bookmarking and cheap and easy self publishing are now opening this up to aspiring writers.

Check out the post at Inc. for more details...

How to Use Social Bookmarking for Business, Page 2

New Authors 
digital publishing 
Artists ebooks fiction First novel Self publishing Web 2.0 publishing marketing fiction digital publishing