After a marathon last-minute editing and rewriting push, and a number of detailed emails back and forth between my editor in Toronto and me in Sydney, we have crafted a stronger, tighter novel. She makes observations regarding character and plot on things that don’t even occur to me. That’s not to say I follow them all, mind you! The penguins in the sign are for her.
Then she and I, plus my chief proofreader (thanks, Mum!), trawled through all 85,000 words looking for typos and garbled words. If I never read that book again, I’ll be happy!
For the first time in months, I woke up this morning without dialogue running through my head. No dash to write down that perfect word before I forgot it. Too late now!
Now, of course, is the part I don’t enjoy: spreading the word. How much good does it actually do to post on Amazon’s Kindle forums to promote your book, to an audience of only other writers promoting their books? Will a good review on a blog actually translate into sales?
I’ve started a series of short stories set during holidays, called Holiday Romances. I’ve written two so far, one for Valentine’s Day (Toast To Go) and one for Easter (The Perfect Chocolate Martini). My plan (cunning or otherwise!) is to give them away on Amazon on the days of the holidays, the point being that the short stories have the blurbs and links to the novels at the end. With luck, a few thousand people will download the free stories, read them in 20 minutes, love them, and click on the book links.
To my astonishment, both Too Close and Toast sold copies within hours of ‘going live’, before I had even told anyone that they were live. So I am cautiously optimistic.
But as for the question “now what?”, well, that’s easy to answer.
I’m going to read other people’s books for a while. Catch up on movies. And go on holiday: I’m sailing from South Africa to India on a tall ship for seven weeks. That should give me plenty of time to come up with novel number three!