Saturday, 11 January 2014

The Existence or Otherwise of my Backbone.

So my computer decided to throw a wobbly - well, more of a warning wobbly, as it turned out. And instead of poking about myself (very much), I handed it over to the professionals to have a look - good old Caskie at On Time Computer Services in Stornoway.  Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear...a few quid lighter...but I have my PC back with a brand new hard drive and some extra memory, without which, had the minor wobbly not happened, my old one may have returned to the great motherboard in the sky with out a by-your-leave.

Upon my return to the inter-world, I was dismayed to discover I had not become a best selling author!? There I'd been imagining my own surprise at flicking to my Kindle Sales Report for the first time back on-line, to find large quantities of either Two All or The Paper Samurai had eflown off the eshelf. But, alas, no. In the whole two days my PC was from me, a miracle had not occurred. Ah woe.

However, as the part of my brain that hasn't been wrestling with my Two All sequel and the part that wasn't imagining staring aghast at my rocketing sales figures, had been considering that I really do need to do some proper marketing, here was the spur.

Marketing - hmmmm - proper marketing, by which I do not mean this lame-o blog (my own fault - I know) which gets read by about five people (hi guys!) who haven't flicked on to it by accident (no Sir, that's right, it has nothing to do with being liberated from bonds - byee!).  I'm talking marketing which means that I ACTUALLY promote my book before my next free-promo days instead of just finding out I have some free days left (you get to do five in a ninety day period) and going: "WEY HEY!" and blasting it straight on just to see those "sales" figures change - and if anyone in Mexico has downloaded one yet.

I have in the past thought about jumping on the marketing treadmill and doing all the stuff you need to - eg. contacting the sites that advertise free books; sending grovelling emails to reviewers, who I am told hardly ever respond; boring everyone on Facebook and Twitter, again, etc and having considered it, ended up stomping off, deciding I don't care if none sell because the fact that seven people have enjoyed it is quite enough - thank you very much.  And in a big way it is and, really, it's seven people plus - not everyone who likes it has reviewed it. (I quite understand that, I never know what to say when I go to review a book, except that I liked it and after that I'm usually a bit stumped as to how to continue - although, if you can work up the necessary verbals, reviews - good reviews - make all the difference, especially to us indie writers.)  But then, having decided not to do the marketing thing but to be a tortured genius (?!) whose worth will only be discovered along with what's left of me after the cats (and possibly the hens) are full, I see my books sitting there on  their dusty Amazon eshelf and I feel guilty because I'm letting them down - the characters I created, the stories, even the bits that I liked but cut out for the greater good -  aww, flaming heck, stop looking at me like that  Michael Neary (he hit the cutting room floor). And so here I am again, really, really - going to promote my books (book and short story, rather). Okay, I admit, just before I started on this post, I did stomp off (in my pink and grey slipper socks - not great for stomping - a sturdy boot is definitely required for maximum stomping satisfaction) and vow that I would leave it all in the lap of the gods, but.... that's the cowards way out. What all this procrastination boils down to is balls and do I have them.  Can I really face doing everything I can to promote Two All - All for One and The Paper Samurai for it to make not an ounce of difference on how many are downloaded?  Hurrumph. So there you have it, the crux of the matter.  And so, me, what's it to be: grovelling emails etc while practising stoicism in the face of utter failure or my favourite Rocket Dog stomping boots and a hard surface? Feck. Watch this space.

Tune: Biffy Clyro - the acoustic version of "Biblical" as played on the BBC Scotland New Year show.