Up at a decent hour this morning. Made some coffee, and hit my email, which had been somewhat ignored the day prior. After catching up a bit, and continuing to comment on a couple of interesting industry threads I've been participating in (one on ethics, another on productivity), I started in on publishing business stuff. Specifically, I put up requests for ARC reviewers in a couple of locations. The first episode of the Arthurian saga will be coming out next month. I'm actually a bit behind where I ought to be, in terms of finding potential readers for "advanced reader copies" (ARCs). The idea is simple, and the publishing business has been using it for ages: send copies to reviewers in exchange for a review. Used to be, one knew who all the likely reviewers were. They worked for magazines that ran reviews of your sort of book. If you were publishing a science fiction novel, you knew just which 'zines would cover your book with reviews. And you probably knew who the reviewers were that worked for those magazines.
Today, lots of things have changed. One thing that's changed is who the most important reviewers are, and where the most important reviews are posted. The most crucial place to have reviews is Amazon. That's especially true for the Arthur stories, because they're going into the KDP Select program - exclusive on Amazon for three months so that I can encourage readers of the Kindle Unlimited program to download copies for free. (Which I DO get paid for, so don't worry about that part!) I'm trying to experiment with KU, to see if this model of serial novellas is something that will work well in the rising tide of subscription based reading. If it doesn't, then I'll switch to whatever method of reading the readers seem to prefer. In the end, the reader is the boss, and I want to deliver something my readers will like to read, in the manner they'd most like to read it.
But as a result, Amazon reviews are most key. Goodreads are a distant second. For writers who are not going exclusive to Amazon, B&N, Kobo, and Apple are all important too. And maybe Google Play, if you have your work up there.
The gatekeepers haven't just left the gates in publishing. The most critical, most crucial, most important reviewer of literature today is now...you.
You, and me, and our friends, family, coworkers, correspondents, colleagues. We're the ones whose reviews will make or break new books.
So I'm starting to ask for volunteers who'd like a copy of the ARC (which they'll get about a week before the book is actually released) in exchange for a review on Amazon. I've put up requests on a couple of forums, and will continue to put up more as the date gets closer. My target is to get fifty honest reviews on the book as soon after release as possible, but honestly - every single one I get from any reader is a huge boon.
If you're already an ARC reader for this serial, thank you. You make all the difference in the world. If you're not, and want to be, then drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org, and tell me if you'd prefer EPUB or Kindle format. I'll send one as soon as they're available.
After that, I got back to actual writing, and put in 1800 words before calling it quits to head off to work. So, totals for today and the month?
Fiction words for the day: 1800 Fiction words for November: 18,300 (3600 into the 4th episode)
Blog Words today:: 605 Blog Words for November: 7398