Ready Set Write

Ready. Set. Write! #RSWrite – 6th update!

RSW9

Ready. Set. WRITE! is a summer writing intensive that encourages goal-setting and accountability, and provides an opportunity for us to cheer each other on wherever we’re at with our writing projects—planning, drafting, revising, or polishing. This year, your RSW hosts are Alison MillerJaime MorrowErin FunkKaty Upperman and myself. (For the detailed information about RSW, including  the wonderful buttons created by the lovely Jaime, click here)

And don’t forget, if you’re on Twitter, we check and cheer each other on using #RSWrite

1.  How I did on last week’s goals.

Hmmm. Not so good. I threw my back and…that wasn’t really conducive to productivity. I have decided I should never mop again

  • Write 10000 words in ASB (back in Scrivener) – NOPE. I did move my document to Scrivener and I’m also working on getting my plot right thanks to an online class. But not being able to move for a few days made it hard and I have a lot to catch up…I can sit again properly so yay!
  • Finalize the ASLNO e-Arcs and send them out first to FB group and then set it up on Netgalley. –> Done and the first reviews are coming in. Always so nerve-wracking.
  • Finalize the paperback version of ASLNO –> Almost done. I did the last read-through and reuploaded the files..
This is how my last read-through looked like :)
This is how my last read-through looked like 🙂
  • Work out 3 times and run 2 times –> I did Yoga almost every single day this week, but didn’t run.
  • Work on the detailed timeline to release date –> In progress.
  • Write post on self-publishing –> Yes 🙂

2.  My goal(s) for this week.

  • Write 10000 words in ASB i.e write at least 2000 words a day.
  • Continue yoga at least 3 times a week and if my back feels better, run at least once.
  • Catch-up on my online class
  • Write a selfpub post
  • Finish timeline and create timeline for Always Second Best
  • Write newsletter for Thursday

3.  A favorite line from my story OR one word/phrase that sums up what I wrote/revised.

I’ve done quite a bit of re-reading this week as I finalized the files for A SUMMER LIKE NO OTHER to make my pre-order date…and I played around with some quotes…this was my Teaser Tuesday quote and I kind of love it 🙂

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4.  The biggest challenge I faced this week (ex. finding time to write).

My back.

5.  Something I love about my WiP.

Nick & Em. I really do love Nick & Em and I’m so happy I get to spend more time with them.

Are you participating in RSW? 
Don’t forget to link to your  update below!

Giveaway winner
Annnnnd the giveaway winner of last week’s Writer’s Care Package is Liz Parker 🙂
 I’ll send you an email today 🙂

I am SO very much looking forward to reading all about your progress!

Self-pub corner

#Selfpub corner – My experience with #Netgalley

#Selfpub corner button My back is slowly starting to get better. I still walk a bit crouched and I can’t do certain movements, nor sudden movements but it’s better… And it’s time for #selfpub corner! Since I’ve been updating my business plans and doing more research and all that, I thought it was high time to start again. Plus, I love reading others’ experiences . Time to give back 🙂

MY EXPERIENCE WITH NETGALLEY

  • How to put up your book on Netgalley as a selfpub author?

There are different options for selfpub authors. You can book a spot for different lengths where someone else is handling everything for you. I used Patchwork Press in the past and loved working with them. And I know that Xpresso Book Tours is also offering this service now. You can also try to find a co-op where you can put as many books as you want within a year (one at a time) and where you need to handle some of the requesting and so on… I love being in a co-op. I love being able to switch my books easily and to know that I have a spot for each of them without having to worry. I think the co-op works best when you have a lot of books coming out in one year. And if you like being hands-on on certain aspects. You can also “rent” your spot when you’re not using it.

  • Is it expensive?

It’s always relative, isn’t it? 🙂 I think that having a book on Netgalley really helps to get your book in front of thousands of readers/reviewers. For a month, $60 seems to be the price on both Patchwork Press & Xpresso Book Tours. The co-op is for a year and I pay $350 I think the co-op works well for me, because I already had two books up and I have 5 more planned before May next year. And it gives me quite a bit flexibility, when it comes to adding things to each book’s profile. For example, I now have files in the press kit section. Among other things.

  • What did I want to achieve with Netgalley?

I am not going to lie. Netgalley is scary. https://twitter.com/ENowodazkij/status/621281019937824768   Having your book up for review is even more nerve-wracking than having your book up for sale. I’m not sure why. And on Netgalley, you have people that review books, which means some are reading to review. I review when I read books that I really really love, so it’s not the same perspective. And it’s perfectly fine. It’s just getting used to, especially since you can opt to receive the feedback directly into your email. With Netgalley though you can really connect with readers. Whenever a reader clicks they wouldn’t mind connecting with the author, I send them an email. I am so grateful for them to take the time to review my little book and it’s a great way to inform them of what else I have going on and the fun things they can join and that I’m open for interviews and so on. Of course, early reviews are also important. And one of the easiest way to get them is to put your book up on Netgalley. In addition, cross-reviewing to sites like Amazon, B&N and Goodreads really helps authors. Of course, not sure how everything is evolving on Amazon since those reviews are not from verified purchases but that’s another story and I really am thankful when reviewers take the time to cross post their thoughts on my books. ❤

  • How did it go?

I had lots of requests. LOTS of request. At least it felt like it 🙂 The first time around, I had 310 requests for review The second time, I had 193 requests for review. Overall, on Goodreads I had about 65 reviews from Netgalley and on Amazon, I think more than half of my reviews are from Netgalley members.

  • What happened after the book was no longer on Netgalley?

I am still getting reviews for One, Two, Three, and I am so happy it enabled me to connect with readers and reviewers.

  • Was it worth it?

Yes. Definitely yes.

  • Will I do it again?

Actually, I am. Right now. A SUMMER LIKE NO OTHER is up on Netgalley (it was first available to my Facebook Group Members – Elodie’s Cozy Nook :))

Hope this was helpful/interesting.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to let me know 🙂 I’d love to hear your own experience with Netgalley if you’ve used it…and if you want me to tackle a certain topic, just ask and I’ll try my best 🙂

Self-pub corner

#Selfpub corner – My experience with #Freebooksy

#Selfpub corner buttonSooooo it’s been a long time since I’ve done a #selfpub corner, and since I’ve been updating my business plans and doing more research and all that, I thought it was high time to start again. Plus, I love reading others’ experiences . Time to give back 🙂

MY EXPERIENCE WITH FREEBOOKSY

  • What is Freebooksy?

Freebooksy promotes free books (being perma-free or those free for a limited period of time). At the time of this post, they do not restrict their ads to full-length novels. I checked with them to make sure I could buy an ad for a novelette and it was fine.

Freebooksy currently advertises to more than 130k newsletter subscribers and 200k+ Facebook fans.

  • What did I want to achieve with a Freebooksy ad?

– At least 800 downloads of ONE DREAM ONLY

– At least 5 reviews of ONE DREAM ONLY

– At least 5 new subscribers

– At least 5 new FB group members 

– At least 20 new sales of ONE TWO THREE

  • How did it go?

I bought a Freebooksy ad ($70) for my novelette ONE DREAM ONLY (which is currently free). I scheduled it for June 5th. And this is what happened…

Units ordered

More than 700 copies on the day of the ad and overall more than 1000 copies….During the ad, One Dream Only ranked #3 in the free Best Sellers in Two-Hour Teen & Young Adult Short Reads.

One Dream Only Best Seller

  • What happened after the ad?

– I sold more than 10 copies of One, Two, Three (sales had been stagnant previously)

– I gained one newsletter subscriber

– I gained two new members in my Facebook group.

  • Was it worth it?

Yes. In my view, it was. Gaining new readers is so important. Plus, I love connecting with them, so I am very excited whenever they either subscribe to my newsletter or join my FB group.

In addition, when people download something free, they may not read it right away and I think I’m still seeing some One Two Three sales thanks to the ad.

  • Will I do it again?

Yes. But not right now. Right now, I’m going to look into ENT and BargainBooksy and others to plan some ads on ONE TWO THREE, around the release date of A SUMMER LIKE NO OTHER.

Hope this was helpful/interesting.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to let me know 🙂 I’d love to hear your own experience with Freebooksy if you’ve used it…and if you want me to tackle a certain topic, just ask and I’ll try my best 🙂

Uncategorized

The making-of A SUMMER LIKE NO OTHER – The first 250 words

typewriter in retro style - vector cardEvery book has a story.

Not the story within the pages, but the story outside the pages.

Why did the writer feel compelled to tell the story?

How many hours did the story take to write, rewrite, re-rewrite, revise revise revise revise revise revise?

And how many elements of a story change from the time the writer writes the first words that come to his/her mind and the moment it is “done”? Is a story ever really finished?

Every Thursday, I’ll be sharing something about the making-of A SUMMER LIKE NO OTHER – either on this blog or in my newsletter (don’t hesitate to sign-up :)) until its release on July 30th.  Next week, in my newsletter, I’ll not only reveal the cover of A SUMMER LIKE NO OTHER, I’ll also explain its making-of (I designed it and I’m so excited about it 🙂

And today, I’m going to start with the first 250 words. Yesterday, I finished revising and editing and re-reading the entire novella and sent it to my copy editor. Then, I thought: “Hmmm, how much did it change from one of the first drafts and this almost-finished version?” It did change quite a bit.

  1. I drafted and rewrote some parts and revised and revised
  2. and then it went off to a first round of beta readers (in this case the lovely and talented Riley Edgewood)
  3. I read her comments and suggestions and revised and revised and re-read
  4. and then sent if off to my second round of beta readers (in this case the lovely and talented Alison Miller).
  5. I read her comments and suggestions and then revised and revised and re-read.
  6. And sent it off to my copy-editor –> I am at this stage 🙂

And below you’ll see the differences between then and now. All the track changes in purple are words/sentences I either added or deleted.

Making of the first page

The “almost final” version of the first 250 words (not yet copy-edited):

The pop music blasts from the speakers so loudly that it resonates within me. I jump once, twice, three times, with my fist in the air and then my hips move to the pounding rhythm.

The mirrors on the wall aren’t used to seeing me dance like this. I usually dance to Mozart, Tchaikovsky, Prokofiev, Minkus. Not to Madonna.

I tilt my head to the side. I don’t want to be rehearsing the movements from any ballet choreographies, but I should. I rise on my toes into a relevé.

I don’t want to be Emilia Moretti—sixteen-year-old ballerina who always tries to perfect each single movement to the point of obsession. I lower, bending my knees over my feet, into a plié.

I don’t want to be the girl, who swears she doesn’t care about being adopted but who has been trying to find her birth parents.

I stand on my toes again.

I don’t want to dwell on the fact that I have the saddest crush on Nick—the best dancer at the School of Performing Arts and my brother’s best friend.

I want to let go and dance.

I close my eyes and raise my hands, moving my lips and making up words as I sing off key. I leap from the ground. My legs form a grand jeté that would have me thrown out of the School of Performing Arts: my front leg is not entirely straight, and I’m definitely not high enough in the air. But I don’t care.

(I am sharing exclusive excerpts in my Facebook group: Elodie’s Cozy Nook, hope to see you there 🙂


Tell me, what is your writing process?

Or do you have any questions for me about the making-of A SUMMER LIKE NO OTHER?


3DCoverXBT2 (2)A SUMMER LIKE NO OTHER (coming out on July 30th):

She’s his best friend’s little sister. He’s the biggest player of them all. They shouldn’t be together. But this summer’s just too tempting.

Sixteen-year-old Emilia Moretti’s goal for the summer is simple: forget her brother’s best friend—Nick Grawsky—ever existed. It should be easy: He’s spending his summer in the Hamptons, adding girls in tiny bikinis to his list of broken hearts. Guarantee he won’t be telling them they’re like his little sisters. This summer, Emilia won’t stay awake at night thinking about him. She’ll need flawless ballet movements to have a shot at next year’s showcase, and she’s finally ready to search for her birth parents. But when Nick decides to stay in the city, Emilia’s resolve disappears in a pirouette. Maybe it’s the spin they needed to be together. As long as she doesn’t get stuck believing in happily ever after…

Nick is tired of pretending to be the happy, let’s-have-fun guy. His father wants him to change his career from professional dancer to…lawyer. He needs to put all of his focus on dancing to prove to Daddy Dearest he’s good enough to make it big. And he may have a case of the bluest balls in history courtesy of Emilia. She’s off-limits: The bro code with Roberto even forbids the dirty thoughts he has about her. Besides, he’s not boyfriend material. He only has time for flings, for girls who don’t expect much, for girls he doesn’t want to kiss goodnight. He knows he should resist her, but he’s not sure he wants to…

At least for this summer.

It’s going to be a summer like no other.

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download

Self-pub corner

#Selfpub corner – Netgalley, yay or nay?

#Selfpub corner button

It’s Friday on my side of the world…which means it’s time for #Selfpub Corner…

Topic of the week: Netgalley, yay or nay?

Every month, I will be asking a YAY or NAY question to selfpub authors.

Today, Elizabeth Briggs, author of MORE THAN MUSIC and Jennifer Ellision, author of THREATS OF SKY AND SEA as well as SISTERS OF WIND AND FLAME  agreed to play along.

We are looking at Netgalley and our own experience with it. I will be explaining the different ways of gathering reviews as well as the different ways to get your book listed on Netgalley next week.

Thanks again Liz and Jen!

Elizabeth Briggs . Netgalley

Ellision

 

Netgalley Elodie

 Hope this was helpful!

Let me know in the comments, and do not hesitate to ask me any questions 🙂

Next week’s topic: Netgalley, blog tours, Goodreads: how does one gather reviews?

Self-pub corner

#Selfpub corner – My book cover design process and what I learned

#Selfpub corner button

It’s Friday on my side of the world…which means it’s time for #Selfpub Corner…

Topic of the week: cover

Covers are important, they really are. But just to show you how important the cover of One, Two, Three has been important in getting the word out, here are a few quotes from reviewers.

“I totally went off the cover,” A flurry of ponderings.

I surprised myself with this book I literally only requested this book based on the front cover.” Natalie

The minute I saw the cover, I had to read this” Tonja

As you can tell, I am super happy with my cover designer: Derek Murphy from Creativindie who created magic!

I mean, look at this beauty 🙂

Official cover

 

As a self-published author, you have many choices: you can buy a pre-made cover (which I will talk about with other selfpub authors in a future post), you can go with several types of cover designer–including ones that may even arrange their own photo shoot.

The prices will definitely differ depending on what you choose. Pre-made covers are usually cheaper (you can find some on sale for $15), the ones where a photo-shoot is organized will be more costly.

And then you need to decide, what type of adds-on do you want? Some cover designer will also do promotional items, others may offer discounts for future works.

How did my process work?

Once I contacted Derek to see if he would have some time. He sent me a few sites to look at pictures that would fit with my story, so he could get a sense of where I was going.

This is one of the image I sent him, do you recognize it? 🙂

http://www.bigstockphoto.com/image-9859367/stock-photo-broken-and-bleeding-heart-on-the-wall

He then sent me 9 different proposals of covers…and I showed them to my street team, who also fell in love with the same one I did: a slightly different version than the cover I have today.

Based on that, he reworked it with different fonts and different placings. I chose this one because I felt the rhythm going through the cover.

He also sent me Facebook cover, quotes boxes and so on…

For example, that one:

ONE, TWO, THREE...banner

What did I learn?

1. The emotions. Oh, the emotions.

Working on the cover is VERY exciting, like everything else in the process. Do you see the dancer walking away on the cover? well, it has been used by other books, and I saw it only close to publication. Cue, freaking out.

 

Like, writing on my Facebook Team 123  secret group and the wonderful ladies there held my hand and reminded me how different the covers were, despite their one similar element.

Still. This is a reality that one needs to realize, some elements of your cover may not be entirely unique. However, with a strong designer, your cover itself will be unique.

🙂

And I am still in love with mine, like the very first time I saw it.

2. Choosing the cover designer.

Personally, I googled cover designers for selfpub authors and I asked my dear friends Juliana and Jen to see who they were using. I also looked at the copyrights information of the selfpub books I really liked the cover of.

Here are some names in case you’re looking. There are different price ranges and there are more in the resources article at the end of this super duper long post 🙂

3. Planning the cover – timeline and type of cover (ebook, print, both)

Before contacting the different cover designers, I first had to decide which format I wanted. And of course, I had to know approximately when I wanted to do the cover reveal and when publication date was going to be, giving a bit of buffer.

4. A tagline

Always helpful to intrigue people.

5. Author photo

Of course, you also need an author photo for the full cover. Here you have to decide what type of author photo you want, but more generally speaking, the advice I received was: a photo where people can really see your smiling face 😉 This will be the topic of another post.

6. Possible early reviews

If you have early raving reviews, you could add a line to your book. Look what L.G. has on her cover: a review from Cora

7. Will I do anything differently for my second book?

Yes. In the sense, that my second book will only be an e-book (it’s a novelette), so I am not going for the full range of ads-on that I did for my first book.

8. More resources

 Hope this was helpful! Let me know in the comments, and do not hesitate to ask me any questions 🙂

Next week’s topic: Netgalley, including the views of several self-published authors on the topic