Welcome to the Silly Season

I can’t believe it’s December already!

I’ve been enjoying a rare weekend off from work. I wanted to spend the whole weekend writing, but I needed to improve on my workspaces at home.

My desk which was stacked high with uni work and one of our printers, and shoved in a corner in the lounge room. I emptied everything off and filed all the uni/work stuff, then got to work on cleaning and rearranging.

I purchased that board to stick a puzzle on years ago, and ever got around it it, so I have repurposed it. I must say, I am very happy with it. We have the calendar for The Miscreant’s world, a rough concept for the next part of our hero’s journey, and the historical timeline.

The blank map on the desk is the A2 poster that I recently got printed from Officeworks. I feel it is still too small, so I will order the A1 size next, which will hopefully offer the correct scale.

I am up to around 8,000 words in book 2. Already, I am hearing my readers urging me to write and release book 2. My target is to launch on March 2nd, but we’ll see how I go during December and January’s rush.

Given that I work in retail and am a store manager, I might not post as much for the net two months. I will do my best to keep you updated on the progress 🙂

As always, thanks for your support ❤

Book 2 progress update

Last night, I sat down with my iPad and started thinking about book 2. Although I have the basic plot worked out and know where I want to go with it, I realised I didn’t create a backstory for the Brotherhood of the Black Ibis. So today, I have been fleshing that out a bit so that everything will tie in together nicely.

Chapter one and two are slowly being refined and worked on, so I can pave the way for the rest of the story. When I first wrote chapter one, I felt like it didn’t match the quality of book one, and I hated it. But after a 2 day break, I reread it and it’s actually half decent. It’s a draft, I don’t like to get too caught up on editing at this stage.

What I haven’t done yet- the map!

Anyone who has followed me for a while will know that I’m passionate about my maps, and go to great lengths to make them. I have just ordered an A2 poster of the above outline, which should give me the right size ratio. These continents are much larger than the Eastern Isles, so scale has been a bit of an issue.

For anyone who hasn’t been following me: I don’t use photoshop. I do my cartography by hand, and tweak it in Paint. Yes, Paint.

Once I have the world map done in A2, I’ll scan portions of it for each section of the book, similar to Eddings’ The Belgariad.

Also…coming soon: an A3 poster of my digitally created map of the Eastern Isles. I made it in Wonderdraft, and am toying with the idea of selling A3 posters.

Given my work commitments, book two may not be completed until the end of Feb. Let’s aim for a soft deadline of March 2nd for launch.

Back to normality

I’m back from our journey south of the border. It was great to see my family again…one week wasn’t enough though. It was hard saying goodbye – it gets harder every time.

Our early Christmas was wonderful as always – delicious food and family makes it perfect.

It took us 12 hours to drive back, with a bathroom break every 2 hours. We took our time and were careful of kangaroos.

Today was recovery day from all the driving yesterday. I even managed to write some of book 2 in between a nap and dinner.

Sales are going ok, I will be investing some money into more marketing shortly, and will also be investing in the business plan so I can integrate a proper store on this website. That should make it easier for customers to purchase the paperback.

Back to work tomorrow. I am so not ready for it, one week was really not enough. But enough complaining, we’ll have a longer holiday around March next year.

All paperback purchases have been posted, and I have sent out a few gift copies for a few special people who have supported me along the way.

I have pulled the plug on NaNoWriMo too. Two weeks in and I’m on just under 5k words. I don’t think the rush and pressure are good motivators for me at the moment. As with everything I do, I’ll keep being an individual and do it my way 😛

One of Mum’s gorgeous roses

A hard earnt break

I’m a bit quiet this week I’ll admit. In between the publishing process and working full time managing a retail store, I have become quite burnt out.

And so my fave human and I are in Victoria for a week, to celebrate our 4th wedding anniversary, and for an early Christmas with my family.

Today we went for a drive around my childhood town, revisiting all the historical sites that I grew up around.

Admittedly, NaNoWriMo is out the window; I haven’t done much writing lately. Book 2 is on 4484 words still…I have changed a few things around and typed a few words, but that’s all.

Book 1 seems to be selling well. I posted 6 books today (3 were gifts) and I need to post one tomorrow that I totally forgot about.

In all honesty, I’ve been spending the early evenings playing Roblox with my nephy-poo. He has been kicking my butt, but it’s fun 🙂

Cheerio for now 🙂

The big day

The day of the launch finally came around yesterday, and I’m pleased to say it was such a fun, relaxed day.

It was only a small catchup with four good friends (unfortunately a few were struck down by last minute illnesses or work).

Pictures say a thousand words, so I will add some pics below. Meanwhile, I’ve sold several print and ebooks already, wohoo!

Remember you can purchase a print copy right here on the website, or the ebook here

Thanks again for all of your support 🙂

Book launch eve

It’s the eve of the big launch, and the beginning of just over a week of annual leave.

I’m tired and just about to go to sleep. But I wanted to show off my box of books that got here just in time for the launch.

I’ve already sold some copies on pre-order, and from Monday, my fave human and I are heading down to Victoria for an early Christmas with my family, and of course our 4th wedding anniversary.

My launch promotion tour has just started, check out gaybookpromotions blog for details 😁

I’m working on upgrading my site to have a proper store built in, so stand by. All book sale proceeds are going back into paying off the publishing costs and to upgrade the website.

But as for now, this *author* is going to bed!

Night night!

NaNoWriMo

I started writing a post on this on Sunday, but somehow I lost it and it never posted. So now I guess I’ll try again.

First, what in God’s name is NaNoWhatNow? I can just imagine my mother’s voice, “What is that silly bitch getting up to now?!”

NaNoWriMo is National Novel Writing Month, and is (celebrated?) run world wide. Basically, the goal is to write a 50k word novel during the month of November.

This averages to 1,667 words per day for the entire month. There is a comprehensive website with forums etc, and nearly every writer is taking part (I say nearly, because a lot of people aren’t)

So tonight, I have travelled beyond the comforting walls of my home, and ventured to GuyLian in Parramatta, where I am sitting with a bunch of writers. Together we are writing our novels, 15 minute sprint, 15 minute break.

It’s definately an interesting experience – we just rock up and type!

Meanwhile, my book launch is getting closer by the minute. I’m a bit nervy but excited at the same time.

One of our friends offered to be my chaffeur for the event. She messaged me today, excited that she found my book on Amazon, and we got chatting about the launch.

She then proceeded to book a room for 2 nights, so I don’t have to ‘stress about travel’. I almost cried.

As for the launch, I probably won’t have any books available…I placed two orders with IngramSpark last week. The first was a rush order to be delivered to my home before Friday.

The second order was standard (slow), and to be delivered to my parent’s house in Victoria. That order was shipped yesterday, and my rush order hasn’t…seeing as I paid an extra $100-$130 to get them here on time, I think I’ll contact them and let them know…

Anyways, our NaNoWriMo event has just ended with the sounding of the fire alarms in Westfield. I wrote around 1k words, which brings my total fo 3.8k. I met some cool weirdos tonight, and have completed chapter one. It’s easy sailing from here!

Making my own rules

Recently, I tweeted some pics of my printed book which included the start of chapter 6, and one of my maps.

The tweet was very well received by Twitter and the writing community.

I had one chap compliment me, but then proceed to inform me that it’s against the ‘rules’ to have the first paragraph of a chapter, especially with a drop cap (the large letter at the start) indented. He called it a beginner mistake.

Of course this made me panic – launch day is just over a week away – so I turned to Google to try and find this rule.

Typesetters have been doing drop caps with no indents since the beginning of printed text. In the medieval times, this was very common.

Basically, there is no set rule that says “drop caps may not be indented.” Rather, it’s “drop caps may not be indented, because no one else ever did, and we’re stuck in the medieval way of doing things.”

Personally, I love the look of my indented drop caps. To hell with anyone who calls it a ‘beginners mistake’, it’s my book, my rules!

Where have I been?

I must admit my posting schedule has slipped a bit. Between now and February, my work gets hectic with the Christmas rush, and as the boss, I tend to get swamped. Therefore I may not be posting as much as before.

So what have I been doing book-wise?

I received the second print copy last week, and must say I’m super proud. The margins are much better, the book titles and section titles at the top of the page are in the correct order, and the maps line up / are set up properly.

You can imagine my chagrin when I read a random scene in the good copy, to find…..a typo!!

I flipped back to the start, and right there, I used the wrong word – bellowed instead of billowed when referring to smoke *facepalm*. I feel like my editor made my ms worse than the state I finished in.

And so I have been reading my own book from start to finish, doing one final proofread, and boy did I find a lot of errors!

Last night I started transferring the changes to the InDesign files, and I will hopefully have them finished by lunch time so I can re-upload the file to IngramSpark. I had planned to do this yesterday, but I had to go into work on my day off. Not happy.

This is my last chance to make any changes before I do my bulk order, so I’m kinda scared that I’ll break something and the final product will come out wrong.

The other thing I’ve been working on is building my platform. I have almost 3,000 followers on Twitter, mostly other writers and readers. The #WritingCommunity has been nothing but amazing, and I have found some great support there 🙂

Twitter has become the platform I use the most, and is where I tweet a lot of updates and interact with other writers. If you don’t follow me already, look me up 🙂

Don’t forget, launch date is 9th November. You can preorder from this site, or preorder the ebook on Amazon.

Angus & Robertson may also be distributing my book, much to my surprise. I googled ‘Amy-Alex Campbell reviews’ and saw the listing for A&R. I was like…WTF are they doing with my book?? Then I found out that they are one of IngramSpark’s distribution partners.

12 days to go folks. May you forever hold Am in your hearts.

Another Road Trip

Today we headed down to Wollongong so that fave human could do a photo shoot for his book. His project captures tasteful nude photos of participants doing what they do to help their depression.

I’ve been dabbling in opening scenes for book 2. I destroyed a city and slaughtered an entire army, and it still doesn’t feel quite right. I’ll get there though.

Todays trip hopefully gave me some good inspiration to help get over that first chapter hurdle.

It was a 3 hour drive each way, but worth it. Wollongong is a beautiful place, and great to recharge my inspo batteries.

I found a few of these washed up in the sand. Bluebottle jellyfish – not deadly, but stings like buggery. One of the many reasons I don’t swim at the beach.

The countdown is on, not long until launch day. I flicked through my printed copy and found 2 typos, so I’ve decided to read it one more time and correct any boo boos before I get the books printed.

I’m a bit frustrated. I paid a lot for the editing, which was to include proofreading, but they missed way too much. I think that’s the last time I use editing services on Fiverr.

November 9th = launch day, watch this space!