There’s a principle of economics called “Sunk Costs.” The way I understand it is this: even if you put a bunch of time into something, if the end product isn’t going to be worthwhile, then ditch it. This can be painful because of all the time you’ve already invested, which will now essentially go to waste.
Unfortunately, knowing about sunk costs and the math behind it doesn’t make it any less painful.
Earlier this year, I was working on a space opera. I had mixed feelings about it. Writing was going slow in places, but I persevered. I finished it, and then… chucked the whole thing. 120,000 words. But it wasn’t good enough, I won’t publish something that isn’t good enough.
The flaws were too deep for mere editing to get them out, but I plan on coming back and rewriting the story someday. Just not today.
Well, I’m having to scrap something else right now. I’m 30,000 words into a novel, and I realized that I’m telling it the wrong way. I need to change the point of view, get deep into one of my character’s heads, get rid of a bunch of the cast, and then change the tone of the story. Once again, too radical for edits to fix. Just start from the bottom.
It’s painful, but I believe it to be the right call. Time will tell.
Ta-da! Cleaving Souls is almost done. Rough draft. Check! First round of edits and revisions. Check! Second round of edits and revisions. Check!
Now I just need to contact early readers, distribute copies to them, plan the release schedule, makeup release materials, contact book bloggers for a blog blitz or tour, organize with said bloggers, and record and edit the audiobook.
I’m also expanding out and trying my hand at editing some other people’s work. Gotta keep those editing skills sharp (or sharpen them up, as the case may be.) And I’m still plowing into the rough draft for The Glass Heist.
It’ll be interesting to see how my hard-earned experience with publishing Home To Roost affects this next book release. Fingers crossed for good things!
And speaking of good things, I’m looking forward to another blogger’s review of Home To Roost, this time on Southern Today, Gone Tomorrow.
In more personal news, we saw some family for the eclipse, which was great. There was a lot of cloud cover, so we didn’t see the eclipse, which was less-great. But oh well. We’ll just plan more carefully for the 2024 eclipse, I guess.
Well, I tried my luck with another marketing thing. Two, actually.
The first was to lower the pricing on Home To Roost from $3.99 to $0.99 for a week, just to see if that would boost the number of sales coming in from advertising on Amazon. Which I suppose it did. They jumped from zero to one. It’s something!
The other thing was to try tweeting about it with the #99c tag. To make a confession here, I have very little idea what I’m doing on Twitter. I’ve had an account for a long time, but used it very little. In fact, my tweet about the sale was the 18th tweet I’d ever made, and probably the first one I’d made with a real hashtag on it. I’ve been meaning for the past two days to look into using Twitter as a more effect platform for connecting with readers and other writers, but have yet to do anything about it.
Anyways, the tweet went out and… I got another sale! Was it related to the tweet? Probably not. But it might have been. But probably not.
So basically, a week of putting Home To Roost at $0.99 has almost passed, and I’ve made two sales. Once Amazon takes their cut, I made a whopping $1.40 or so. Again, it’s something!
But this is all a great learning experience. I’m making very different plans for how and when to release Cleaving Souls. Hopefully I’ll be able to apply this wisdom to miraculous effect!
I made a decision just now: I will not be using the WordPress mobile app to create blog posts. Here are my reasons:
- I don’t think that it syncs well.
That’s pretty much it, actually. Everything else would be fine. But I’d just written up a nice little post, published it, went to check it online and…..nothing! So I checked it on my phone, and it had the design for site a mashup of its current design and its former design. Yikes! I waited for a while, and the post never did show up on my computer, so I’m just ditching the app when it comes to writing posts.
But what I had posted about was this:
We had a nice little book club meeting. My wife is a member in a small book club, and they gave Home To Roost a try. We had the club members over to our place for a luncheon and a tour of the actual locations in the book, given by the author, yours truly!
I wish I’d prepared for the tour better. Maybe come up with some more amusing anecdotes or something. But it was muggy outside, and I was nervous, and it was probably for the best that it didn’t last too long.
I did make a great chicken cake, though! (Don’t worry, it wasn’t a chicken cake. Just a chocolate cake with a picture of a chicken on it.)
Yummy Chicken Cake
In other news:
- I think I’m going to dedicate some time to learning the ropes of some social media tools that I’ve ignored up until now.
- I need to start being a little more cautious in how I phrase and share opinions on other people’s blogs. I know I’ve been guilty of leaving too long of comments, and perhaps some other sins as well.
- I had to put my sheep in time-out today. My three-year-old was jumping on the trampoline, and the sheep decided to attack her from beneath. She ran under the trampoline and was headbutting directly beneath my daughter, which was very alarming for her. Lots of tears. Ba-a-a-ad sheep.