It would be too much of a cliché to say it has been a journey, or a challenge, or a challenging journey. But it was certainly more of an experience than I expected, and perhaps I am a step further on the road to becoming a wise old man. It is a tale of five parts.
Part 1: Writing – taking my many book ideas and novel openings and really getting stuck into my favourite , turning it into a full, 120,000 word novel. Redundancy helped, making some time available away from the rat race. I wrote the type of book I like to read – epic fantasy. So it was rather like reading but with direct control. I learnt a great deal in doing it, I am still learning – that’s good, that’s life.
Part 2: Editing, re-reading, re-writing, proofing, correcting, etc and etc. What a luxury it must be to have a publisher and an editor, this was hard work – worthwhile because I could see the improvements – but it felt like it would never end. Thankfully I had help from family and friends, they made a huge difference!
Part 3: Cover design and creation was almost as much fun as writing. Once the idea for the cover materialised it was a case of sourcing the pictures, editing them, merging, etc. I was being economical (or mean) and so wanted to do it all without any cost. Well, no financial cost, high time cost though. Eye-catching and relevant were the aims, others can judge if I met them.
Part 4: Self publishing brought two surprises. Firstly it was fairly easy with Amazon. Secondly it was more stressful than I expected. Is it vain and arrogant to take your own words and proclaim that others may want to pay to read them? It felt like it, but I just want to share the story and the characters, and I really want to know if others find enjoyment in the reading, as I did in the writing. This was the peak self-doubt moment in the whole process.
Part 5: Promotion. You know, Amazon, Facebook, Twitter, this stuff right here. So many possibilities, so much to learn. For what outcome? Time will tell as ever. I have only just begun, as you may be able to discern, but as with most things one of the best ways to learn is to just start doing. It’s certainly fun so far.
So here I am and here it is. Wiser or just a little more experienced. I’d love to know what you think about any of this…
The writing? I am back in stage 1, writing Mindmage – Wildmind Book 2. So it’s all circular, which sounds wiser than it is.