Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Never Give Up

The pace of my writing has slowed down in recent weeks. I am more than 70,000 words into the manuscript of my second novel and I have a solid enough story backbone, which should allow me to focus on the writing until the end. It's more or less a straight line now until I complete the book. I don't see any obstacles in my way with the exception of my own personal moral dilemmas. Some issues have popped up in my life. They are temporarily preventing me from being my usual prolific self, and hence the absence of news on the blog for a while. However, I am confident that my pace will return to normal soon.

Taking a step back from the longer writing spells has allowed me to reflect on my main character (let's call him Gerry for the time being) and his motivations. He's an arrogant, selfish and gung-ho business journalist; in some way a cowboy of modern times. He's sex-obsessed and generally an annoying person to be with. But as his investigation progresses, his commitment to resolving the murders intensifies, and his feelings for the main female protagonist (Sarah) evolve. His attitude also changes and adjusts to the horrors and tragedies he uncovers through his research and travelling. Thanks to Sarah the reader will discover a new more polished side to Gerry's persona as he gradually shifts to becoming loyal, altruistic and devoted: a better man. Breaking away from the writing routine also allowed me to consider an alternative conclusion and a different plot twist for the end. This new idea has germinated and grown on me, and I can't wait to write it all down in detail.

I'm liking the shape my new book is taking and I am already impatient to move onto the post-writing phase and try my luck again with literary agents (Having self-published 'Out of Bounds', they will be able to check my work and more easily figure out what I'm capable of. It will serve as proof that I'm able to carry a project from A to Z and that 'Out of Bounds' was not just a one-off book by someone who has no intention to write again).

'Out of Bounds' is still pretty much an ongoing marketing project. I'm happy to report that the feedback I am getting is very positive, and that is not just friends and family, but from people who don't know me too. My blog statistics indicate decent following from the U.S. where I hope to gain a fanbase. I'm also fortunate to have visits from many countries around the world. How does that translate into book sales? It's hard to say, but I'm happy that the word is spreading.

I've geared my marketing efforts to trying to secure book reviews by bloggers and newspapers. It may take time before a review of 'Out of Bounds' is published, but I am confident that a few good reviews on popular crime fiction review blogs will do me a world of good and help spread the word even further. In May-June, I had the privilege to receive feedback on 'Out of Bounds' by a published author and crime thriller reviewer who works for the Daily Mail. He told me he enjoyed the book (needless to say that my heart missed a beat when I read that). However, he will not be writing a review for a few reasons. I was fantasising about a column in the Daily Mail. Never mind. What a push that would have been! Anyhow, I will keep trying, and as the future becomes clearer, I will generate time to explore more alleys to promote the book. Why not a local book signing event, or intruding a crime fiction conference? There are possibilities, so it's important to never give up.

It's summer time and summer time means summer sales. Smashwords is asking authors if they want to participate in their own summer sale offer. I agreed, and for the whole month of July the 'Out of Bounds' ebook is available at half-price (half of $3.99 - so that's only $2 - what a bargain!). This can only encourage more people to check me out. If you wish to benefit from the discount, buy the ebook at this link:
and make sure to use the coupon code SC92J.

I hope to post more news soon.
"Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time." - Thomas A. Edison.