The Journey to a Bestseller: Essential Scenes in Every Story- Part Five (Series #17)

Hey everyone. I didn’t get any writing done this week. Isn’t that terrible? Shame on me. But, I did spend that time doing writerly things. Okay, I was making swag… but someone’s gotta do it! I have the cutest swag, too.

What is swag? Mirriam-Webster says, ” The freebie swag, sometimes also spelled schwag, dates back to the 1960s and was used to describe promotional items.”

I have bookmark cards with a key on one end and a dagger on the other, because my main character wears an important key around her neck, and she’s given an enchanted dagger. And my gift for customers (with two books purchased) is a necklace with a key and a sword. (She also has a sword in the book.) Here’s a photo:

Why am I making swag, you ask? In several weeks, November 23rd, I will be in a book fair with other local authors. At my table, I will have my books to sell and bookmarks to give out to people interested in the series. The book fair is from 1:30-4:30 pm at Woodneath Library in Kansas City, Missouri. Here’s a link: https://www.mymcpl.org/events/57640/local-author-fair

But if you miss me that weekend, in two more weeks, on December 7th, I will be at the Public Library in Topeka, KS from 10-1pm with another local authors’ book fair. Perfect for Christmas buying! Get both of my books, signed of course, and some free gifts… have some cider or cocoa and browse all the other great buys. Here’s the link for that one so far: https://tscpl.org/event/20191207/great-writers-right-here-book-fair

I feel bad about not discussing one of the essential scenes for a story today. I mean, that is the name of the series. I thought about giving you the next scene anyway, but I’m going to get too far behind and then not have you all to keep me accountable. So… I have a Christmas manuscript to edit, then I think I will write for the rest of the week and get caught up. Then, next week we’ll pick up after the dark night of the soul.

I hope I’m at least showing you that a great book can be written, even if you have weeks where you don’t get much done. And with jobs and families, sometimes that happens. Don’t worry, don’t panic, and DON’T give up!

There is a saying I like that says something like, “If there’s something you want to do, don’t quit because of how long it will take. The time will pass anyway.” Meaning, if you think it will take you 10 years to write a book, don’t despair, start writing. Because ten years from now you’ll either have a book, or you will have wasted ten years. You will look back and think, I could have a book right now if I’d started ten years ago. Just to be clear, it will NOT take you ten years to write a book. It shouldn’t. You can write a book as quickly as you want, as long as it is written and edited well. It can take you days, or maybe a week or two. Then edit it until it shines.

I must keep the blog short again this week. I am giving my son rides to work and back to his apartment, while his car is being worked on. The bad part is: he works nights. So, I have to drop him off at 11pm, but he gets off at 7am, which is just about the time I take other kids to school. I have been exhausted all week. That’s part of the reason I didn’t get writing done, when I could stay awake (I’m being treated for narcolepsy), I was too busy trying to catch up on editing work to write. But next weekend, I’ll share what’s going on in the story.

I re-sent my third book’s manuscript to beta readers last month and I sent out a reminder with the manuscript again, in case anyone missed it, or forgot about it, or whatever. Just a friendly nudge. I am hoping to come up with ten reviews before launch. Or, to be delivered before launch. If you’d like to be one of my first reviewers, let me know and I will get you a copy of the manuscript. I’d like to have a prize winner out of those who review, but Amazon says I can’t “provide an incentive” for reviews. I want to run a few promos the week of my launch to keep my book at number one AFTER launch. I’ll tell you more about those promos later. If you are launching a new book soon, and you’d like more info before I get to sharing, contact me, and I’ll tell you more.

My book was at #12 in one of its categories since yesterday. That’s the closest I’ve been to #1 from sales. My second book launched at #1 as a new release, but I didn’t run promotions like I should have and lost the momentum right away. This time, as long as Amazon doesn’t do anything to screw it up, I should do much better. Yesterday, my second book wasn’t even listed in any browsing categories at all. That was frustrating. But Amazon has been really good about fixing things when they mess up, you just have to tell them. Unfortunately, I have to email them almost every day.

Keep writing! Or pick it up if you find your mind wandering…

~jenn

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