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The Plan: March 13

Last Month

February actually went pretty much to plan! Yes, I am aware of how rare this is. The life of a creative is never dull but rarely is it planned too. I spent most of the month sitting down writing Sherdan’s Legacy, to the point of being very close to finishing. I think I’ve got about 2-3k words left to write and I can hopefully manage that today. That gives me a total of about 22k words in February, bringing me up to 45k for the year so far, and still over my target of 200k in any running 12 month period.

The ebook release was pushed back a little to make room for finishing Sherdan’s Legacy and working on the marketing side of things. I’ve now got a rough marketing plan set out for the next few months as well as tentative release dates for the ebooks throughout the year. Still working with my team on the upcoming audio book and print of Sherdan’s Prophecy. Hopefully I’ll have more news on both of those soon.

I’ve also had a few really good reviews the last little while, my favourite probably being this one of Chains of Freedom. This one has come from another historical fiction author, so hearing him praise my historical accuracy is a very nice thing.

This Month I’ve got the ebook launch of Wandering to Belong, which should be around middle of the month. I’m talking to the cover deisgner over the next few days so hopefully I’ll be able to do a cover reveal on that very soon and then I can throw myself into the marketing for that one, as well as the fun launch, but I’ll talk more on that in a separate blog soon.

I’ve also gone through the extra bits of recording with my narrator for the audio book of Innocent Hearts, where mistakes had been made in the original recording. So that should be going through editing and mastering shortly.

On top of that I’d also like to get the final reviewer in place to be quoted on the back cover of Sherdan’s Prophecy. I’ve had one quote that will be perfect from another author and a second one is on it’s way (the author is reading the book currently) so I just need my third confirmed and I can send all the details off to be added to the back of the book.

With all those done I should be able to get back to writing after that. I’ll definitely have Sherdan’s Legacy finished, but I haven’t decided after that if I want to continue work on The fire of Winter or write a short in what’s left of the month. I’ll probably mull over a few ideas and see where I’m leaning.

New Year and a New Plan

Happy New Year everyone! Yes I know it’s a little late now. I’ve been a little busy.

I know I haven’t done my usual start of the month blog since September. I didn’t see much point doing one for November and I plain forgot about December until it was a bit too late. This month I thought I’d talk about the whole of the last year and some of my goals for the year ahead.

I wrote a significant word count in 2012 – 184,717 words to be exact. This is over 60k more than 2011. This was just on stories too and doesn’t include the word count for all the blogs I’ve written this year.

Research has been another big thing in the last year. I’ve had to learn about all sorts of things for the current works in progress, ranging from, the best place to hijack the tran Siberian railway and smuggle people off (see Shattered when published) to research into end of the world prophecies (see Sherdan series) and many things in between. I think ¬†anyone looking through my internet history would be mildly concerned if they didn’t know why I just happened to be looking that kind of stuff up.

I’ve published two novels this year, both Chains of Freedom and Sherdan’s Prophecy and all the reviews I’ve had of those two so far have been very positive. There’s definitely a lot of evidence that I’m growing as a writer, which is always a healthy thing.

Future plans include the print version of Sherdan’s Prophecy as well as the eBook of both For Such a Time as This and Sherdan’s Legacy as this years releases. I also hope to finish the first crafts of both my other two works in progress, Shattered, and The Fire of Winter. On top of that I want to start the third book in the Sherdan series and another book which is still totally under wraps for now but involves another writer. I’d like to see how that goes before I do any big announcements.

In terms of word count I’m going to aim to do a little more every month than the matching month year on year to try and hit that illusive 200k word goal. We’ll see how that pans out with my goal to also step up on the marketing in the early parts of this year. I really want to promote the Sherdan series over my other works as I think its my best work by far but it will probably depend on how well I’m feeling. 2012 was a crap year for me health wise and I’ve still got hospital appointments and tests trailing well into this year.

So there’s my work related goals. Anyone else have anything similarly ambitious (or even more so)? Or anyone want to remind me of things I said I’d do that I might have forgotten? Sometimes I forget I wanted to do a project.

Social Network Sites

I’ve been very distracted the last few weeks with creating and maintaining all the social network sites there are on the web.

Now I knew about twitter and facebook. I’ve been on both of those for years now but I do have a new facebook fanpage here

I’ve also set up author pages on amazon.com and amazon.co.uk

These are both great for many reasons. The most useful feature is the forums they both have. Forums are a great way to communicate with any fans and I’m looking forward to getting stuck in there. They also both show the Nielson rating for the books I have their as well as my Amazon ratings.

My favourite new websites though are Goodreads and Shelfari and I seriously encourage anyone that reads to go sign up at both of those.

Goodreads has all sorts of useful things including a very easy to use book review system, an ebookstore, quizes, author event trackers, Q &A sessions with authors and my personal favourite, book giveaways.

Shelfari seems to be the more social one of the two and includes a section for each book with all sorts of trivia and other fun things like that. Slightly more for the reader and a little less for the author but still fun nonetheless. It’s also a subsidiary of Amazon.com so it imports amazon’s book ratings to let you know what people thought of the books.

Through Shelfari I’ve manged to meet another indie film company similar to Flight and we are swapping advice and helping each other out etc so It’s done some good already.

I’m also looking into myspace but as I’m not so great with html that one is taking a bit longer.

If anyone knows of any other good social sites they like let me know. I absolutely love using them and getting to know new people.