Sunday, January 20, 2013
Musings about writing
My second military science fiction novel is almost ready to be sent out to beta readers at the end of the month. After its latest rewrite and edit, I spent today putting most of the sections together in a single document, ready to add the last one towards the end of next week, then create a file for distribution to beta readers. It looks like this volume will top 90,000 words, compared to the slightly over 86,000 of the first one, which beta readers received at the beginning of January. (So far, the feedback I've received has been mostly positive, but many beta readers have yet to respond. I asked them to get back to me by the end of January, so we'll see what the overall verdict is then.)
I hope my idea of publishing the first two books of the series together will bear fruit. There are any number of wannabe authors who put out just one book, price it at whatever they think it's worth, and then sit back and hope to be 'discovered'. I don't think that's going to get them very far in today's market, which is why I'm going to put out two books at once, to show the series potential, and price them affordably. I was greatly encouraged by Larry Correia's achievement with his first book, 'Monster Hunter International'. I helped publicize his self-published first version of it (which sold so well that he was picked up by Baen Books), and all his novels since then. He's now got half a dozen titles out, and deserves every scrap of the hard-earned success he's enjoying. I hope to emulate both his good example and his success!
Miss D. has been an enormous help, encouraging me when I get discouraged, trying to be my 'alpha reader' (even though she's not really interested in military sci-fi at all), and looking into marketing and circulation issues that I haven't yet had enough time to address. By doing so, she's freed me to focus on the writing process, which is a wonderful gift. It may sound trite to say that "I couldn't do it without her", but it's absolutely true!
Thanks, too, to all of my readers who've helped with comments about previous excerpts I've published online, and who've occasionally e-mailed with encouragement to keep at it. I hope you'll enjoy the finished product when it debuts online, hopefully in the second quarter of this year. I'll be asking you to help by reviewing it, and spreading the word about it to your friends and contacts. I certainly can't succeed without you all!