Because I’m writing and releasing a book a month, I’ve noticed a pattern.
I send the book out to my ARC team, and can’t write a damn thing until those reviews come in.
While I’m blocked and nervously waiting on either glowing reviews or scathing ones, I try to keep busy.
Since the hot dude (AKA my husband) and I are trialling a couple music sites, I’ve been listening to a bunch of music that defined my youth.
We’re talking WAY back in the 80’s and 90’s here…
Classics like, Eurythmics, Kylie Minogue, Bon Jovi, Cyndi Lauper, Wham, Def Leppard…you get the drift.
And you know what I realised?
Some of the early works of these artists weren’t that great.
They were still finding their groove, finding that distinctive sound that makes them the icons they are today.
Kylie started out as a fresh-faced Aussie soap star on Neighbours and wound up being one of the most successful artists to come out of Australia.
Side note: She’s awesome live. I got to see her a few years ago. So are Bon Jovi. 😉
The point is anyone creating art, whether it’s music, paintings, books, etc. all have to start somewhere.
No, my first series isn’t perfect. I hadn’t learned to trust my instincts, didn’t understand punctuation rules, and I hadn’t found my groove but, and this is a crucial BUT, readers still seem to like them.
I once read an interview with Michael Jackson where he said he never listened to his music after it was released.
His reasoning was that he’d always find something that was wrong, there would always be a beat, or a melody, or a harmony that he’d change.
Can you imagine what would have happened if MJ had obsessed and reworked his first attempt at a solo album?
He’d have gotten stuck rather than moving forward and learning with each new album he made.
Perfection seeking is the fastest way to kill creativity.
So, to take a leaf from MJ’s book, rather than remove my first series from sale, I’m going to leave Allegiance as is and do something I should have been doing all along…moving on to the next project.
Which brings me to another observation I made a few months ago about Mr Kipling.
For those of you who don’t know, Mr Kipling is a British company who make scrumptious little cakes.
I was doing my online shopping and noticed there was a new addition to the range.
Sponge cakes with crystalized ginger, and chocolate icing.
There was NO picture, just a description. But because I’ve sampled ALL of the other cakes in the range, I knew I would love this cake just as much as the others.
It got me thinking about something I've noticed about branding.
As a romance author, I have an ongoing series of standalone books.
Due to a bumble in scheduling, I slapped two pre-orders up without blurbs.
And you know what?
I still got pre orders on those books.
What this tells me, is that I now have readers willing to pre-order based on their previous experiences with my series.
After seven books, my readers already know what to expect.
They take it on good faith they will enjoy the product I produce.
Just like the cake I bought without seeing the shiny picture to tempt me, I need to know enough readers will buy a book without a shiny cover.
So, I’m taking a leap here…
I’ve put a rough blurb up for a fourth Relevance Book priced at .99 cents.
There isn’t a cover at this stage, but I’m hoping you’ll place your faith and trust me to produce another product you’ll enjoy?
A new threat is surfacing…
Six months after Mallory and Cristan escaped, the new city is in chaos…
Rationing and curfews are in place.
Factories no longer produce food. Garbage is piling up on the streets.
Diseases once controlled are now rampant.
Thousands have fled to the wastelands and the old city.
The Units outside the wall can no longer sustain the influx of refugees.
In the Zoo, Cristan, Mallory and the rebel Irrelevants have managed to stay undetected.
But when Cristan receives a coded message from an unlikely ally, he’ll have no choice but to get involved…
…no matter the cost…