In the Finger Lakes Region of New York, there exists a tiny town that is home to approximately 2,200 people. Nestled in a valley beside a lovely (if not somewhat sea-weedy) lake, my town boasts it's very own park, post office, pizza shop, (and if you count the neighboring tiny town, population: 2,500) dive bar, and convenient store. And now, they have their very own author ... who writes some really weird shit.
It's 4:00 in the morning, and I am completely rewriting the post I had planned for today. Why? Because I watched "The Nightingale," written and directed by Jennifer Kent. And, wow. I absolutely loved it.
After you've spent months churning out a novel, the thought of condensing it down into a few short paragraphs for the back of your book may feel a little bit daunting. But you can actually create a quick draft of your book blurb relatively early in the publishing process. There are just a few things you'll need.
A few weeks ago during a particularly nasty bout of (dare I say it?) writer's block, I stepped back and spent some time analyzing my outline process. To be clear, I'm a natural "pantser," but if you want to publish novels on any sort of regular basis, at some point, you're just going to have to break down and work on your outlines. So, I did. And in so doing, I developed the skeleton for a W.I.P. Workbook.
From neighbors throwing a dead carp over the fence, to the digestive capabilities of Tolkien's orcs, we've pretty much covered it all.
I recently broke down and created an author Instagram account, and it was certainly eye-opening. From perfectly curated pages to bookstagramers who treat reading like a competitive sport (yes please) it's a colorful new world of book promos and reviews. And damn, those people make books look good! But even with the pretty fairy lights and colorful knee socks, I always find myself asking what lurks just out of frame.
Today, I'm going to be candid with you. Creatively speaking, the past two months have been rough. It's like I have a vat of strawberry jelly knocking around between my ears, and no matter how I try to zap it into action, it remains an amorphous blob of goo.
By the time you reach week nine of the self-publishing process, you'll already have quite a few things on your plate. So, if you've found yourself drowning in the administrative details of preparing to release your first novel, this is the point at which you really want to step back and make sure that you finish your first draft. After all, you'll want to have plenty of time for revision and editing before your publication date!
It's week eight of the self-publishing process, and by now, you should be around -- or even slightly past -- the midpoint of your novel. If not, don't panic. You haven't finalized your release date yet, so it's okay if you end up moving things around a little. Still, you'll want to make sure that all of your social media outlets are up and running before you set your release date to help build hype and to give you a sense for the community you'll be joining.
When it comes to self and indie publishing -- especially if you're doing all the design work on your own -- it's important to find sources of unbiased feedback wherever you can. And it's never too early to started searching!