Well met, my friends!
As some of you know, I’ve been working for a good while on a medieval fantasy novel, inspired by the early Dragonlance books by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman. My alpha readers provided feedback, which led to some new chapters. I’m finally in the last stages and am looking to release the book via Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) and Createspace later this year. Here are the things that I still need to sort out:
1. Sanity Check:
I want to re-read the book once more to make sure that the changes I made in the early chapters do not invalidate the later sections.
2. Optional Line Edit:
A line edit is crucial, but since I’m on a very tight time schedule, I might shorten the line editing in favor of getting the Advance Reader (or Review) Copy (ARC) out the door.
3. Write Chapter Commentary for ARCs:
This is something cool I’ve planned for the ARCs – the feedback from my alpha readers showed me that there were a few subtle issues that only half of my readers picked up on. Since these things were not crucial to understand and enjoy the story, I left the clues as vague as they were. However, I want to provide some background information per chapter to explain what’s going on behind the scenes and what some of the choices were that I made. Since this is not something that interests everybody, I will include this in the ARCs, but not in the final release of the book.
4. Compile List of Book Bloggers / Reviewers:
As I am nearing the release, I want to drum up some interest beforehand. To that end, I plan to approach book reviewers and bloggers with an interest in fantasy to see whether they would like to have (and possibly review) one of the ARCs.
Of course I got so carried away that I only approached fellow authors so far (Rachel Aaron, Danielle E. Shipley, Michelle Proulx, and Kat O’Keeffe), but at least the response was positive, even if they are not in a position to review. Still, the purpose for printing ARCs is not only to give them to reviewers, but also as a thank you to my alpha readers and to give to cool people.
5. Print 50-100 ARCs:
I haven’t made up my mind yet, but right now I think 50 will be sufficient. I need 16 for my alpha readers, keep a few for myself, and then distribute the rest to reviewers and the above mentioned cool people. Since there is an equal mix of people wanting eARCs and actual books, the number 50 should be sufficient.
6. Line Edit:
The release version should be as error free as possible, so I am contemplating to pay someone for the line edit, in addition to my own efforts.
7. Commission a Cover:
I’ve already contacted an old friend of mine to design a cover. If that falls through, the next person to check is Zelda Devon and her fantasy-esque art style, which would be a perfect fit.
8. Format Book as epub / mobi:
When I gave the kindle version to my alpha readers, the formatting was all right, but not perfect. For the release version, I aim to do better.
9. Release on KDP and Createspace:
Even though I plan to have the ARCs done in early March, the cover, formatting, line edit means that the release of the book will be delayed till June. Once I have a more accurate estimate, I will be sure to mention it, either here or on twitter.
Pursue your dreams and see you next time,