The Plunge

Shadow of the Wraith, Kindle cover

After many years – perhaps about twelve – of writing and editing, rewriting and editing, I finally finished my final edit of Shadow of the Wraith on 6/4/12. Then it was a slightly bumpy and educational month getting ready to self-publish.

I learned that converting to html for Kindle was somewhat frustrating and tricky, that converting to epub was exceedingly frustrating and tricky, and that literary agents pop up at very inopportune moments.

Yes, just two weeks from publication, a friendly agent from a well-respected agency sought me out to tell me he liked what he read on Authonomy, and could he read the full manuscript.

I said no.

Well I had to. Just two weeks until my long-awaited (by me and my mother anyway) novel was released, I was just too far down that path, too in that mindset, to turn back. Even temporarily. But it was nice to be asked.

The final week was like the scene of so many action films, where only a few seconds remain on the bomb’s countdown! I had an artist working on my ebook cover, and not taking notice of half of what I asked him to do; I needed a bank account into which my millions would be deposited, but was being turned down for one; I was preparing to visit my family in England for the weekend (probably not the best timing).

But, as the timer read ’00:01′, I received and finalised the cover; I got my account; I got my PayPal verified; I got six shots of Jack Daniels at the airport (What? I only asked for four!).

Then came the fateful day. I was back in Ireland – it was a bright and still morning, rather unfittingly. I opened my laptop, I checked my files, and I clicked ‘publish’.

Then I waited.

I should have been preparing press releases and book reviewers and whatnot (actually I should have done that some time before), but I’m not very good at preparing things. Even as I type, I have open a browser window with ’40 ways to promote your book’.

Naturally, things did not go as smoothly as they had in my head so many times. Lulu decided that they didn’t like the cut of my hardback’s jib, and refused to distribute it to Amazon (paperbacks only); Amazon itself messed something up and left many of us unable to do anything with our ebooks, or show them in the KDP Select program; the majority of my good friends and followers on social networking sites couldn’t care less that I had achieved my dream of publishing a novel, and refused to click that little button to spread the word.

However, both versions of the book began to sell, and just this morning I got my email saying that Shadow of the Wraith is now properly published on KDP, allowing me to enrol it in Select and have Amazon Prime members borrow it for free.

There’s still plenty of work ahead in order to help the book start moving on its own momentum, but this is what I want to be doing – writing books. And preferably selling them. It’s not exactly like hard work, is it?

Then I’ll start all over again with book 2.

Originally posted on Goodreads, 4/5/12

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