One More Day Until Publication

 

I recently read a book in which the subject is about a club you never want to belong to. The authors who get a book published on the other hand is a club I have been actively trying to get into for almost three years. On November 30, 2017 I will officially be a member of that club. I feel so joyful today. I recently joined a local writers group and book club two separate groups both with talented and articulate people. I recently read that marketing your book is very important but WORD OF MOUTH is a much stronger vehicle. It has been a most pleasant experience friendly, encouraging people in both groups. People that love to read and those who love to write. My kind of people. I’m also reading books I would never have chosen for myself and broadening my world. Today’s group considered and chose my book The Summer Palace to read for the next book of the month I am honored and crave the feedback. Tommorrow I will deliver twelve books to another book club. It’s wonderful how receptive these avid readers welcomed my book sight unseen and I hope they aren’t disappointed. So far this new phase of the process has been a positive experience.

Thursday, my book will be available to purchase. There are three ways to purchase my book The Summer Palace by S. Forrest Nomakeo AustinMacauley.com, Amazon.com, and Barnes and Noble in Western Mass. and online. Amazon and B&N may state that the book is out of stock because they need to get orders in order to place an order so don’t be discouraged so by ordering from AustinMacauley.com (UK) may be the most direct way if you absouletley mus t have the book right away… and I can understand your reasoning for that. The Summer Palace by S. Forrest Nomakeo because there are other books by the same title but this book is yellow and the only one that bears my name.

OTHER BOOKS

It was one month ago today that I sent my third book The Places You Will Be From out to query. Since my initial blog I have received no word from any of them. That is why you must never wait; keep on writing, reading, and dreaming. I’m still looking for a Critique Partner of Tea Room my second book and it sits in the crock pot on low.

Now I have several clubs I’m proud to be part of. Check out the local library website and join a writers or readers book club. That’s what I did.

Did you get the e-mail?

So far I haven’t been able to write while listening to my playlist. I’m trying it now. I’ll see how it goes.

Well, it happened I received my 20 complimentary advance copies from my publisher. A banner day. Seeing the book and holding it in my hand was a great feeling. I shut the musci off can’t seem to concentrate with it on. Anyway, I’m relying on the fact that my book will be available as promised on November 30, 2017. Although, my book isn’t in the system yet. Not sure how this will all work out but I will keep you informed.

I sent out my first e-mail to this list. I hope if you are a registered user you received a notice about the upcoming release of my book The Summer Palace and I’m entering into the marketing phase. I’m trying to line up book club events, and handing my copies out to people that have been encouraging me throughout the process. The event I’ve been planning, the big event, is temporarily scheduled for February 2018. A little later than we expected but to do it right I need a few months to plan. In my networking plans I reconnected with one of the editors of one of my books. The author of The Novel Makers Handbook, Diane O’Connell replied to me right away. I have mentioned her book in this blog  before but I must say again how much the book and its author helped me in my quest to get my book to the level it needed to be to be published. If you are in any stage of completion of your MS I highly recommend this helpful tool. In fact I went on Amazon and gave her a review. Speaking of reviews on Amazon, I have developed a policy for myself. If I can’t rate a book at five stars or even four—I won’t leave a review. A three star review leaves a negative connotation and I made that mistake once and won’t do it again. So, as important as these reviews can be I believe it’s better to leave no review than a mediocre or poor one.

Still, things are not happening fast enough. It’s a true exercise in humility. I sit to write and order my characters across the continent, I decide what they’re wearing, what color their eyes are, and even whom they might fall in love with, yet I’m totally at the mercy of someone else who doesn’t think my book should rise to the top of the pile, answer my e-mails immediately, and produce a timeline. However, I do believe there is a lot of grey area between what I expect and what is professional and courteous.

A Really Big Shoe

Remember my recent post about waiting for the other shoe to drop? If not, you can find it in the archives not so long ago. Shortly after my last blog, I received the proof certificate to sign off on the cover and text of my novel The Summer Palace. I have since been assigned a Marketing Coordinator and the plans for the publication of my book are in motion. I’m still not sure about when I’ll receive the advance copies or exactly where my book will be available for purchase on November 30, 2017, but I will keep you posted. I have compiled an e-list from this blog and you should be receiving a notice when it becomes available to purchase.

HOUSEKEEPING

Between the date of October 26 – 28 2017 I sent out eight queries on my book The Places You Will Be From the same book that was turned down by another agency. I reported that I heard back from two agencies so far, one was an auto-reply and the other was a rejection. I have heard nothing from the other six since. That was roughly two weeks ago.

When I signed off on the final copy of my book I received a questionnaire from the Marketing Department. Because I had done my homework, I was able to fill it out and send it back the next day. I had mostly everything in place; a professional photo, a media kit downloadable on my website, a synopsis and jacket description, a good basis for an e-mail list from this 2-1/2 year old blog, and a podcast and ten questions from an interview. I also had to come up with a list of booksellers, media, and organizations that could be contacted about my book.

In the long stretch of time between signing a contract and signing off on my book (14 months and counting) I kept writing and looked into what would be expected of an author in this final phase of production. I’m in a much different place than I was six months ago when I thought my book would be published. The delays and waiting were draining (I don’t recommend doing that). This next phase, going out into public and talking about my book will be me out of my box. Looking at the top of this blog, you’ll see I was a listener before I was a writer none of that says media personality. In the last month of filtering through The Summer Palace I have become re-acquainted with the story—word by word. It still thrills me to see how all the words combine to express what was in my mind. I do hope when a reader sits down with my book that the hours they spend with the words will be meaningful and memorable. A book is a real commitment by the reader and an honor for the author.

Speaking of which, I have been immersed in the Drenai Series by David Gemmell. I am currently reading The First Chronicles of Druss the Legend book 6 out of 11. I have enjoyed each and every book so far and I highly recommend them. He’s a one of a kind storyteller.

So, the other shoe has dropped and it’s a really big one. It will take me on an adventure that I will be happy to share with you.

A Lot Has Happened Nothing Has Changed

A lot has happened.

• Expecting a  final PDF of my novel The Summer Palace  to approve

• Waiting to receive the cover and jacket copy to approve

• News about my recent submissions

• My latest endeavors

Nothing has changed.

I still wait to sign-off on my novel and get it into publication. I found more errors in the final PDF copy I was expected to sign-off on two weeks ago. Unfortunately, I found several glaring errors and inconsistencies that I choose to fix. When a publisher takes on a first time author, there should be some understanding of typical errors we make. Like, expecting someone else to painfully go through the MS and miraculously find the errors hidden in-between miles of text. When I received that final PDF copy I decided to do what I should have done during the first edit. I read the book backwards. I’m sure there are more errors, they seem to be eternal, but I found some that would have made me cry if the book was printed that way. Not sure what to do at this late stage I went back to the Word Doc and effected the changes and sent it back to my publisher. Four days later I found out that I had to make the changes to their file which they sent and I made the changes and sent it back the next day. That was a week ago and I still wait. So in that regard nothing has changed.

I was supposed to hear from the Marketing and Promotion departments but haven’t. Today I sent out an appeal to someone who could take up my cause. I did receive a publication date and a promise for advance copies by November 22, 2017 but since I haven’t signed off on the project I’m getting concerned about that date being feasible. A lot has happened but still, nothing has changed.

My back-up plans: The Tea Room was rejected and the query and sample pages that was picked up on The Places You Will Be From was rejected after sending in fifty pages. Nothing has changed there either. Rejection is  tough. It makes you wonder. What was so enticing to the agent about the three sample pages and the query to inspire the agent to ask for a partial MS, and what was so uninspiring about the rest to reject it? Am I getting better writing queries and opening pages, while the rest of the story remains a bore? Something about the storyline and characters that didn’t go in the right direction and was distasteful to the agent? Bad hair day? Not likely.

What was my reaction? I’m actively looking for a Critique Partner for the Tea Room. I still love the story and see merit in its telling. I have joined one writers’ group and I’m planning to drop in on a local chapter of the Fiction Writers Club and see what they’re all about in my quest for a CP.

After my disappointing rejection of Places You Will Be From. I sent out eight queries, after two days of self-pity, and received two auto replies and a rejection in my inbox one day later. That was ten days ago and I can expect to wait another three months (hearing nothing) to expect that—it was a no. Strange to say, but the almost automatic rejection from one agency was almost welcomed so I can move on—a rejection in hand is better than two in the bush (it goes something like that).

A lot has happened, yet nothing has changed. I still haven’t given up.