Greetings people. To say that I have been neglectful of my blogging duties this year would be something of an understatement. Regrettably, as much as I would like to be posting new updates on a regular basis (I certainly have plenty of unwritten posts I want to share), all my free time at present is being spent on writing my second novel while continuing to promote my first. In other words, I’m not likely to be in a position to start frequently updating the blog again before the end of May, at the earliest. Until then, this is a quick post to let you know I’m still breathing, and inform you of the most significant developments in my writing life since the turn of the year.
First things first: for the past few months I’ve been working on the follow-up to my debut novel, The Exercise Of Vital Powers. Those of you who are subscribers to my newsletter will have known since late last year that the sequel novel is called The Apprentice In The Master’s Shadow, and that it takes place two years after the events of its predecessor. Officially, I’m aiming for a late summer release, but a September publication date (at the earliest) is a much more realistic prospect.
In addition to resuming my writing, the start of the year has seen me actively taking steps to increase awareness and visibility of The Exercise Of Vital Powers. I’m pleased to say that these efforts have not been in vain. Since December, sales figures have consistently been trending upwards, with each successive month’s sales being higher than the previous month. In fact, it only took two weeks for March sales to exceed last month’s total. Obviously, I’m not in bestseller territory yet, but the size of my readership has definitely grown over the past four months, so I have reason to be confident there will be a decent sized audience for my second book when it lands.
On a slightly less positive note, the quantity of ratings/reviews for TEOVP on Goodreads and Amazon hasn’t increased at the same pace as the growth in sales. Perhaps this is to be expected given that books can take time to read, plus only a minority of readers typically post feedback online. However, in addition to more readers purchasing the book, the number of people accepting review copies has been growing steadily, which makes me hopeful that I can reach the minimum threshold of fifty ratings/reviews (needed to increase a book’s visibility on the aforementioned sites) before the eventual publication of the sequel.
Looking beyond 2019, I have tentatively started outlining a multi-book novella series for the latter half of 2020 into 2021. The series is at the forefront of my strategy to increase my future publishing output since I’ve come to realise that releasing one book a year isn’t really viable for the average self-published author wanting to earn a living from their writing. It will also be my first foray into into science fiction, and while I initially envisioned it as a YA series I am now leaning heavily towards making it a New Adult project instead. For now, it’s too early to give any meaningful details about the series other than to say imagine Roswell meets Dark Angel.
Next month will mark the end of my second year as a self-published author. Back in April 2017 when I released the first edition of The Exercise Of Vital Powers, I did so with no expectations; I simply wanted to be able to say I had published a novel by the time I turned forty. The only real target I had in mind was to spend five years self-publishing before deciding if I have a future as a fiction writer. I still have three years to go until I make that final determination, but in some ways I feel as though I’m ahead of schedule. When I began this journey I had no fan base whatsoever; I was starting from zero. Today I have a small but growing readership, some of whom may qualify as actual fans. If continue to progress as they are at present, I’m pretty confident that I won’t be calling it quits at the end of my fifth year.
Hopefully, this explains my lack of blogging activity this year. Once I’ve finished writing The Apprentice In The Master’s Shadow, normal service can resume, and I’ll begin updating regularly again.
Thanks for reading,