To say that the writing of my second novel has been a slow and painstaking endeavour would be an understatement; my word count got way out of hand, and nailing how the story should end was a dilemma that took an age to resolve. That being said, it hasn’t been nearly as stressful an experience as writing my debut novel, The Exercise Of Vital Powers. Nonetheless, the time and effort I’ve had to put into finishing my manuscript has meant that I’ve been quieter than I would have liked about my progress, and the status of the book. Today I’m coming out of hibernation to present you with the cover reveal for The Apprentice In The Master’s Shadow.
Please check out this new review for The Exercise Of Vital Powers, posted on Nana’s Fantastical Reads.
~Werbung / ad – Thank you to Ian Gregoire for providing me with a copy of this book. All opinions are my own.~
Ever since The Exercise of Vital Powers was reviewed and praised by Booktuber Kitty G as part of SPFBO 2017, a contest for indie authors hosted by author Mark Lawrence, I was very intrigued by the premise. However, the cover didn’t really appeal to me and might have been the reason why I didn’t pick it up immediately. The next time I checked, the book was no longer available on Amazon since the author wanted to revise the book and publish a second edition with a brand new cover. I was lucky enough to participate in the cover reveal in May. Since the new edition is available now since the beginning of July, I was finally able to read the book and share my thoughs on it…
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Reader reaction to the protagonist of a story will not only influence whether they like a book or not, it can also make or break the fortunes of that book; maybe not in terms of the critical response, but certainly in the commercial sense. This is an observation I was very conscious of while writing my first novel, The Exercise Of Vital Powers. I realised early on that my protagonist, Kayden Jayta, was a character who many readers would struggle to get behind. In fact, it wouldn’t come as a surprise to me if most of the people who end up disliking the book do so primarily on the basis of their dislike for Kayden.
I like to think that most books have a natural audience: specific readers whose preferences all but guarantee they will enjoy those books. With that being the case it obviously makes sense for authors and publishers to identify the type of reader who constitutes the natural audience for the books they want to sell. By specifically targetting the appropriate audience no time and money is wasted marketing books to the wrong readers. It obviously wouldn’t make sense to market a book like Altered Carbon to readers who favour Regency romance novels, for example.
By now you should all be aware that the re-release of my debut novel, The Exercise Of Vital Powers, was last week, Monday. You should also have noted the most readily apparent difference between the first and second editions of the book: the cover artwork. Once I had decided to move ahead with a revised second edition, I knew that the book’s outer appearance would be the most crucial factor in improving its fortunes over its predecessor―even more so than the editing. This post will give you a little insight into my thought processes when it came to the design of the new cover.
As you know, the second edition of The Exercise Of Vital Powers was released a week ago today. But how has it been faring in that short time? Do I have a bestseller on my hands? Am I giving J.K. Rowling a run for her money? The answer, of course, is no. Consequently, I won’t be relinquishing the “Worst Selling Author” moniker any time soon, although it is worth mentioning that the new edition has already sold more copies in a week than the first edition did during its eight months on sale. Admittedly, that’s not saying much, but I consider it a good sign that things are moving in the right direction.
This is just a quick update to let everyone (who cares) know that the second edition of The Exercise Of Vital Powers is now available to purchase. You can currently buy the ebook from Amazon and Kobo, though it should also become available at Barnes & Noble and iBooks at some point today. For readers who prefer paperbacks, it’s only available from Amazon at present and I have no idea when that will change.
With the imminent re-release of my debut fantasy novel, The Exercise Of Vital Powers, some people might wonder why I would go to the trouble and expense of publishing a new edition so soon after the original release last year. There were a number of factors that made the publication of a revised second edition a desirable proposition, eventually, but my decision to pursue it sooner rather than later was prompted by necessity.
For those of you who have not been paying attention, pre-orders for the second edition of The Exercise Of Vital Powers became available at the start of the week. Anyone wanting to do so can order their copy from Amazon, Kobo, Barnes & Noble or Smashwords.
So, it’s two days after the cover reveal for the second edition of my first novel, The Exercise Of Vital Powers, and I have to say it went better than I hoped. The response to the new artwork was overwhelmingly positive, and I received lots of good feedback. Now, whether that will ultimately translate to interest in actually buying and reading the book in July remains to be seen, though I’m taking it for granted that the second edition will easily outsell the first.