I’ve been working on something crazy the past few weeks. Something that looks far into the future. Something that most people (including myself) will look at and shout, “Are you mad, woman!!??” Something that has me a little scared.
But isn’t that the sign of a great invention? Just think of when Edward Jenner started going around saying, “Hey, let me inject you with this little bit of cowpox so you don’t get the smallpox.” Who wouldn’t think he was crazy?
Granted, my creation isn’t going to save mankind from disease and disfiguration (or will it….?), but I am hoping it will save my writing career.
Because, like a dorky girl with a crush on the football captain, I’m desperately trying to get Amazon to “notice” me. And to do this I need to get more books out in a more timely fashion (this equivalent of the montage scene where the dorky girl gets a makeover). Putting out one or two books a year may work for some super awesome writers, but it’s not working for me especially since I write in a pretty competitive genre.
And so, without further ado, ladies and gentlemen I give you, The Production Schedule.
Oh dear. I hope there wasn’t too much fainting in the audience from the excitement.
But what is it, you ask? Ah, the curse of the inventor: people not understanding the genius of his or her creation.
What you see above (the spreadsheet, not Gene Wilder) is my plan for book production over the next two years. Yes. Two years. The top pink is 2018, the green is 2019, and all those little red scribbles are book releases. Well, planned book releases anyway.
The reason for so many releases is a basic self-publishing marketing strategy: Keep the releases coming so you stay “relevant” on Amazon’s algorithms. Supposedly this relevance makes the Amazon recommendation engine more likely to show your books to shoppers, which then further increases your relevancy (and by relevancy I mean sales figures). And it all (hopefully) turns into a big self-feeding loop.
But I’m not jumping into this plan without knowing my own work habits. I would never have contemplated something like this a couple years ago. But by now I’ve learned it takes me about four drafts to fully work out the kinks of my books, then a draft for proofreading and checking for formatting errors. Then one final read over to catch those last few sneaky typos. Using this knowledge and my desire to put out a book every couple months in 2019, I came up with The Production Schedule.
It’s scary. Very scary. Some months I have myself working on five books at a time, but keep in mind some of those books will be in the less-time-intensive read through stage and I’ve given myself way more time than I usually need for Draft One. I’m also working on strengthening my pre-writing efforts so the actual drafting part will go faster (that’s what they tell me anyway) and I’ll spend less time revising (something that ends up being a huge time suck for me).
In truth I have no idea if I can pull this off, but the schedule is only a spreadsheet, not chiseled in stone. If it needs to change, it can, but I’m going to be trying my damnedest to make it work because I am champing at the bit to get my writing noticed.
So what’s in the works?
- The serialized historical fantasy books set in Osteria (see this post for more about this project) = 4 books starting in Fall 2018
- The final two books of the Osteria Chronicles = 2 books in Spring & Fall 2019
- Box sets of all of the above books = 1 release in mid-2019 and 1 in late 2019 or early 2020
- A new paranormal fantasy series I am SUPER excited about (more on this soon) = 4 books in 2019, then more in 2020 (I haven’t decided yet how long the series will run)
It’s going to take plenty of nose-to-the-grindstone days, but something needs to jumpstart my discoverability and “write more books” is one bit of marketing advice I don’t mind following.
Any big pushes for you this year? Any plans scaring the pants off you but yet you’re still excited about? Leave a comment and let me know what’s up with you!!
And now I leave you with a bit of Osteria Chronicles humor…
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