I will not look at reviews, I will not look at reviews.
Not because I don’t appreciate them, but because there’s a massive fear of failure and at some point, some place, people are going to have bad things to say about erotica and romance, there are always negative reviews.
Which readers are entitled to make. And other readers are entitled to read and make a purchasing decision on.
Reviews are not for authors, therefore I will try not to read the reviews and try not to get wrapped up in them or take them personally.
I have Contract Taken in hard copy sitting on my desk. Beth warned me, so I had actually lightened the cover front and it still came out mauled by the printer. There’s a second copy coming, but given the number of hard copies I’ll probably sell, I’d be okay with the cover as is.
However, I opened it up and spotted straight quotes almost immediately. To which I was going to shake my laptop, but it’s now in storage so I couldn’t reach it. The whole point of doing the entire story on the laptop was that it only had smart quotes.
You may be wondering what in the hell I’m talking about. I’m talking about quotation marks from dialogue and apostrophes from contractions. Some where curly (smart quotes) and some were straight quotes. Jumbled all together. Most readers probably wouldn’t even notice. It took seeing it in a hard copy form, professionally printed for me to spot them.
It is a matter of pride, however.
So I blew the cover into the brightness once more, in one more attempt to perfect it to show off the awesome cover, and reformatted the entire inside. Which meant that I had to go back through and redo chapter titles and the full lines of italics, which my word processor during reformatting decided were wrong, more wrong than the freaking spaces after the freaking paragraphs that it keeps insisting I need.
I am slightly computer savvy, but have yet to be able to find how to change this option and the one that keeps insisting that I need to write in 12pt fonts. Who writes in 12pt fonts besides high schoolers who think they’re getting out scott free on a five page essay?
While I’ve been talking to Beth and she’s been encouraging about what’s going on, I have no idea if the launch was great or not. No one’s screaming for my blood and my rank didn’t immediately tank. I suppose in the indie publishing world, that means things went well.
When I first placed Contract Taken up for pre-order I was told that I should just publish immediately, but I did not. I didn’t get to build a lot right before the launch either, due to illness. I spent my days sleeping and getting better instead.
If you are a new author, I do agree with everyone else, publish right away and start that ball rolling. But I had a small base to start from my free works. The point of the pre-order wasn’t actually to draw in more readers and get a good first boost, but to give my long time readers a chance to get the book on discount.
Without that base, I think I would have had two pre-orders in total. Which would have been a waste of the pre-order, two orders don’t give you a boost, which is the whole point of the pre-order… for most authors.
Beth has been muttering about genre differences. She didn’t have that initial base, however. Family and friends mainly, was her base. Which is great, they can be very supportive. However, she didn’t exactly tell them all at once or shout it from the rooftops. She kind of mumbled it under her breath and ran away.
That’s kind of what Beth used to do.
I, on the other hand, am now giving away two hard copies to bribe co-workers. The one person knew for a couple of months. The other one, I jokingly threatened to quit on because I was going to make it big on my BDSM erotica of course. Except I did it while the first person was there. So when they asked me if I was being serious about having written erotica, the other person responded in the affirmative.
I have done that several times and each time denied because no one knows. … Thanks, lady.
“Why wouldn’t you want people to know?”
“Look around you… now think erotica.”
“… Oh, oh.”
“Yeah, I still have bills to pay.”
Holding the broken hard copy in my hands was the most delightful part of my week. I cannot wait for the second proof to come in, sometime today or tomorrow.