As a self-published, unrepresented author, there’s always a niggle of self-doubt in my mind that I’m playing at putting books on Amazon, but really they don’t actually cut it alongside published books.
At the start of the year, I set out one of my writing goals to get into the Kindle Top 100, the ‘holy grail’ of Amazon publishing. This weekend, much to my delight, my latest novel ‘Don’t Tell the Groom’ managed to sneak into the top 100 (at #98) for about two hours before it drifted back into the high hundreds. It wasn’t until two days later that I got into the top 100 again, and this time I got even further. By coincidence, Amazon featured me in their ‘daily deal’ e-newsletter, and somehow I made it to the giddy heights of #52. 52 out of half a million books available on Kindle.
It was a proud, yet surreal moment. There was my book, that I had written, in a book chart actually above traditionally published books and authors who are household names. This is probably nothing in comparison to that feeling you would get when you sign with an agent or a publisher; at that moment your writing is validated by someone and they’re essentially saying they believe in your work. But, I like to think that by making the top 100, that’s a validation from readers and book buyers. It’s given me a huge boost of confidence to start believing in my writing and my books.
I’d like to say a massive thank you to everyone that has bought a copy, to those that reviewed the book, and to the huge thank you to those that have retweeted the links/interviews and reviews.
And here’s hoping that one day I’m writing a blog that’s titled: ‘What being in the Kindle top 20 means to me!’
Today I’m launching my third novel, Don’t Tell the Groom on Amazon. You may think that as it’s my third time through this process that I’d be an old hat by now, and that the nerves would have disappeared, but you’d be wrong. I’m more terrified than ever with this book as I think it’s my best work yet.
The biggest problem with being self-published is that you don’t have that publisher giving it that stamp of approval telling you that it is ready to be released to the world. My editor told me that the book had made her laugh out loud in many places, and my test readers loved it. But I know all my test readers and I pay my editor, so there is always that bit of self-doubt as to whether they’re just being nice.
I released the first chapter of Don’t Tell the Groom on my website in mid-December and I also sent out review copies. I was staggered how excited people were about the concept and by the number of bloggers that offered to review it for me. Which led to one thing: more nerves.
With people excited and expecting the book to be good I spent most of the Christmas break coming out in a mild sweat when I thought about people reading it, would it live up to people’s expectations?
And then there’s that terrifying moment when reviews start to get posted. The first was from the Chicklit Club, and I was staggered when it was 10/10. I should add I do review for them, but the reviewer who read the book didn’t know that! I spent the whole of that evening in a daze. Had I actually written a really good book?
I’ve gone on to get some lovely reviews on Amazon, and from bloggers on their review sites. And yet I’m still nervous. Will I ever release a book not be? And now I wait for the readers to download it from Amazon, and now I’ll be nervous about their reviews...
Once again the generosity of bloggers and friends on Twitter and Facebook never ceased to amaze me - Thank you to you all.
If you wanted to buy Don’t Tell the Groom - then you can do so here!
Below are links to the reviews currently posted on external sites for Don’t Tell the Groom:
Mama J Hearts
Lou Graham’s Blog
Where I'm at...
Where has this year gone? I can't believe it has almost been six months since I blogged. I swear someone has pressed fast forward on my life.
Millie and the American Wedding has been selling on Amazon, and selling well. I've been so pleased with it that I've stopped chasing the dream for now of getting a traditional publishing deal. I love getting reader feedback and tweeting with readers. So I'm going to publish my second book on Amazon 'Universally Challenged' pretty soon. It is just being line edited at the moment, so hopefully in the next couple of weeks I'll have a better idea of publication dates. I've just started to have the thumbs up from test readers so that is always great!
I've also just finished the first draft of a novel I wrote in ten days. Which was intense but great. I'm blogging about that on Novelicious next week if you want to find out about that. The book is a bit different to my usual light hearted chick lit and is more romance focused. I'm going to send it for critique with the Romantic Novelists' Association to see what they think (as I'm a member of the new writer's scheme).
And then I'm going to write the prequel for Millie and the American Wedding - which will be Millie and the American University. I can't wait I've missed Millie, Kristen and Rob and I'm going to start the story off where it all began. If you ever wanted the US college experience then you'll love it!
So as you can see I'm a bit busy at the moment - but I'm loving every busy minute of it! x x
Millie and the American Wedding
Wow, it has only been 2012 for 23 hours, but I can already feel that 2012 is going to be a great year for me! For starters, Millie and the American Wedding is about to be published as an ebook on Amazon. I have an amazing cover, thanks to Kirsty at Novelicious who designed it for me!
Take a look and tell me what you think. I'm currently in the final proof read edits and sorting out my marketing plan for the launch. I'll keep you posted on all the developments.
Read about my general mutterings on my books and life in general.