So here I am, split half a dozen directions with what I’ve done so far. I started building online presence under my own name in 2008 but could no longer afford the hosting for my web site and lost it in 2012. In an effort to be practical, I took a step back and decided to promote two pen names. I’ll talk about this more in the next part of the series. Suffice to say I have made little forward progress in the right way.
So, with two projects at hand plus two short pieces to market, where do I get started and which one do I lead with? To complicate the question, one novel is crossover YA/Literary, the other is romantic suspense. One short piece is dark and gritty, the other dystopian. In the wings, a fantasy, Regency historical, non-fiction, and Adult Contemporary wait their turn. This is not a cohesive body of work in terms of audience or genre, so no single more-or-less established route is an easy fit
First, though, there are a few basics to clean up. I have a problem. Though I have enough writer’s ego to keep writing, I am deeply insecure about my work. I need to build confidence. I need confidence in my work and my ability to present my work successfully to publishers and the public. I also need to separate myself from my work. The work is written and done. The characters now speak for themselves and I can’t let their reception be a personal renunciation or endorsement. It is also up to me to decide that I am okay with failure as an experience rather than rejection.
While I work on confidence, my mentor and I are setting up social media outlets for a cohesive online presence. The hitch is that I need no-cost outlets for now that fit into my job and commitments. I have Twitter, Sarcastic Muse, and Tumblr. It is time to set up an author page on Facebook, and get back out there in the world of blogs to support bloggers I enjoy and respect. This process, though it has been ongoing 2008-2011 and April 2013 to the present, needs to be consistent and managed, and under one name. How long before I can think about publishing? Edge of Dawn goes to final Beta readers August 1st. I plan to have it ready to submit to digital presses in late September. Recompense is ready now, and if it is independently published in digital format, I’ll probably need six months to build my online home.
That brings me to the publishing plan. Some of my work is category or genre specific. Those pieces will have an easier time finding a home with a publisher. Other pieces are multi-layered and much harder to categorize. Those will be independently published. Over a few years, I hope to have enough sales and readers to be enticing to an agent. I also plan to give my short stories and flash fiction pieces away or as additions to my novels. Except for one. That one I will send to literary magazines to see if I can find success there.
So, Edge of Dawn will go to publishers in September. While it is making the rounds, I will complete a second line edit on Recompense and get help where I can to give it the most complete polish I can afford, locate and get a cover for it, and prepare it for market.
I’m a spreadsheet fanatic, and it’s a good thing, because keeping track of these deadlines, bits and pieces, and timelines feels like a challenge.
The Rest of the Series
Part One: Where I Am – Starting at the (almost) beginning.
Part Two: Pie in the Sky – what do I really hope for by publishing? What is realistic?
Part Four: Undoing Past Progress for Future Gain – Pen Names, platforms, relationship with social media.
Part Five: Gathering Support – putting together a personal support network from family, friends, and mentors.
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