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Readers Speak

Do you read the forums on Amazon? There's a very interesting discussion about the democatization of the slush pile. I love that it's contrary to all the "doom & gloom" that the press is predicting over the rise of self- and small-publishing. The actual readers are saying, yes! Give us a sample and we're happy to try an indie rather than whatever Big Publishing wants to stuff down our throats.

Here's the thread!

And by the way, Sleepwalker is doing unexpectedly well over there on ol' Amazon! YAY!



( 16 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 23rd, 2010 06:15 pm (UTC)
Go, Sleepwalker, go! So, um, when's the sequel coming out? ;)
Jun. 23rd, 2010 06:20 pm (UTC)
I could probably get it out before PsyCop 6, but then readers would kill me.
Jun. 23rd, 2010 06:44 pm (UTC)
Yes, yes, they would. :) Carry on!!
Jun. 23rd, 2010 07:32 pm (UTC)
That depends on how long it takes you to release both, lol.

It feels like you're releasing so much less this year, even though I would think your wordcount is probably similar. Other authors are writing/releasing less, though, and perhaps that's why I feel starved for good m/m.
Jun. 23rd, 2010 10:41 pm (UTC)
I'll take a word count at the end of the year and see how I did. It'll be interesting! My guess is that I have 500 useable words/day, which would be 182,000 words released. I have a feeling I might hit that! We'll take a little tally in December and see.

My theory is that if I forced out 2-3000 words per day, I wouldn't end up with depth and characterization. There are some things I rewrite 2-3 times to get them right--and honestly, I'd rather do that than to accept the first thing that pops into my head and crank out a bunch of mediocre books. I'd be wealthier, but not happier. So I probably write 1200 words per day but keep 5-600.
Jun. 23rd, 2010 11:51 pm (UTC)
I'm looking forward to the sequel. I'm looking forward to PsyCop 6, too, of course. I'd seen earlier drafts of Sleepwalker quite some time ago, and good portions of the content stayed the same, so I wasn't in suspense about that. I just got psyched lately about readers getting to enjoy it. I'm eagerly anticipating seeing a draft of PsyCop 6. :)
Jun. 23rd, 2010 08:21 pm (UTC)
Congrats on the success of Sleepwalker! I bought it but I haven't read it yet. However, I will say that no matter how much I might love it, and I suspect that I will since I have loved all your stuff, if you don't feed my Victor Bayne obsession soon I will implode. Implode! Imploded readers cannot buy books. So pay attention to Vic first and then write the Sleepwalker sequel. Please!
Jun. 23rd, 2010 10:42 pm (UTC)
We can't have you imploding. It's not a messy demise, but it's still distressing.
Jun. 24th, 2010 12:50 am (UTC)
And only Vic can save me!
Jun. 24th, 2010 12:01 am (UTC)
I thought the author of the original article was rather wild in some of her opinions. I linked to it on my LJ and did some commentary from my viewpoint as an editor.

I still think e-books are very comparable to pulp fiction. There's a wild range of writing ability in the field, but readers pick out their favorite authors for certain qualities. For me, character development makes up for a lot if the book has other kinds of flaws.
Jun. 24th, 2010 10:46 am (UTC)
I'm curious why all the articles I've read so far are slanted toward the spoken or unspoken bias of, "People can't handle making their own choices."

If anything, I think I tend to diss "the masses" myself--especially when I see droves of people doing weird things like buying McMansions they can't afford--but I'm really pleased with the reaction to these types of articles, where readers are really stepping up to the plate and saying, "Let ME be the judge of what I want to read, or not."
Jun. 25th, 2010 01:53 am (UTC)
I started reading your books purely because I read a sample, then could buy it on my Kindle. I've since bought PsyCop 1-5, and just now purchased Sleepwalker to read over the weekend.
Jun. 25th, 2010 08:28 am (UTC)
Samples and excerpts are wonderful things, aren't they? I love them, because I don't want anyone to have buyer's remorse about a JCP book!

I think I can usually tell within a page or two if I will like an author's writing style or not.
Jun. 25th, 2010 08:34 am (UTC)
With novels about five pages usually suffices. With a non-fiction book I prefer an entire chapter as a rule.

If I may ask, what software do you use to create the various eBook formats? I have been playing with a few and I haven't been overly happy with anything I have found so far.
Jun. 25th, 2010 10:31 am (UTC)
I create PDFs with Adobe Indesign.

I create HTML files with Dreamweaver, using special mobipocket commands for pagebreaks, and a linked table of contents. I transfer the folder from my Mac to a PC before I zip it, otherwise weirdness creeps into the zip. I sell the zipped HTML file directly for customers who prefer HTML.

To make other file types, I then take the HTML (deleting the table of contents) and create a Mobi file in Mobipocket Creator--because Mobipocket creator generates its own TOC that works better than the one you create in HTML.

This PRC file can be uploaded to Kindle. Page breaks and TOC should remain intact, and the metadata you supply in Mobipocket creator should stick with it.

I then take the MOBI (PRC) into Calibre and convert to EPUB and LIT. This is the best way to preserve the formatting. I used to use a special program to create the LIT, but I've found Calibre does a better job. It also allows you to control your metadata.

Not very streamlined, I know. I spent a couple of days after I first upgraded trying to make Adobe CS5 create a perfect epub for me and it just didn't happen. I have better results starting with a nice, clean HTML file and going from there.

Hope that helps!
Jun. 29th, 2010 07:30 pm (UTC)
That is actually very useful :) Thankyou very much.
( 16 comments — Leave a comment )

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