Two books now available on Kindle

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I’m delighted to announce that not one but TWO of my re-branded, re-packaged and re-published books are now available in the Kindle store on Amazon.

This is one (or two!) of the things I’ve been working on recently.

NIGHT CRAWLER: A MARCIE CRAIG MYSTERY and TWEE TALES are now available, on Kindle, for £2.99 and £1.99 respectively. If you click on the covers, you’ll be taken directly to the Kindle store. But if you’re in a different country, still follow the links and then follow the link on the books’ pages to your own country’s Amazon – it’s usually in the top right of your screen if viewing on a desktop or laptop, and I think there’s a clickable link on other devices too.

I’ve not had much luck selling ebooks on other platforms and I can’t really afford the time to re-format them at the moment. But if you prefer to buy your ebooks on Kobo or Nook or whatever, do let me know and I’ll make it a priority. For the next 90 days, however, they’ll be exclusive to Kindle. I want to see how the KDP Select thing works out before making them available elsewhere as well.

These Kindle versions can no longer be bought with the Diane Parkin byline. However, I’m trialling giving the Kindle versions of the new books away FREE to anyone who buys the paperbacks … I’m just not sure how they work with each other yet, so won’t promise anything until I know it’s working … watch this space for that.

My other decision (as well as the Kobo/Nook/etc) is to only publish hardback books via Lulu in future, then publish the paperback and the ebook on Amazon. The CreateSpace is so much easier to use and there are lots of different styles of cover to manipulate too. (See my “current projects” page for examples – I’ve been working on that as well.)

You can see from the illustrations, on this page and on the “current projects” page, the difference in cover size. Also, my raw Word files didn’t need half as much re-formatting to get them to work as they used to. In fact, they didn’t need any. Perhaps this is something Amazon has worked on.

If you buy any of the books, or if you already have older versions, it would be great if you could leave a review – if Amazon will let you. Thank you in advance.

Diary of a freelance writer: 20 July 2016

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Coming soon!

The news that came in last Wednesday morning has been expanded upon and added to, but as I’m still awaiting confirmation, I won’t go into detail on here yet. However, as it’s pretty likely that it will be happening, it seems, the structure of my day will probably change as of tomorrow’s diary work for next week … keep everything crossed.

Wednesday 13 July 2016
After spending almost the entire morning in complete shock, I finally had a word with myself and eventually cracked on with some work. I updated the books page on this blog and removed 2 older ones.

I wrote 628 words for a blog post, I republished 2 books on Kindle, and I worked on the covers for TALES FROM BAGGINS BOTTOM BEST BITS BOOKS THREE and FOUR.

I’d unpublished the Kindle books originally because the hard copy versions have been republished. However, as I’ve not yet republished the new Kindle books, I thought it best to put the original ones back, for now.

I currently have a complete draft of BAGGINS BOTTOM BEST BITS BOOK THREE to edit, and will be collating content for BOOK FOUR very shortly.

My first story appeared in the queue to be critiqued on Critique Circle.

Thursday 14 July 2016
By Thursday morning I’d received 8 critiques for my story. I don’t know if that’s good or bad, but once 5 have been received, the stories move to a different queue to give everyone a fair chance at getting critiqued. On the whole they were all very good, very constructive and with some good suggestions and ideas. No one slated it, so either that’s a bonus or they were all being very kind.

I acknowledged and thanked and commented on all of the crits received so far and did the usual Thursday morning admin work.

In the afternoon I wrote 1,483 words for CATCH THE RAINBOW and I completed the first “Act” or “Part”, distributing 26 scenes between 12 chapters.

Friday 15 July 2016
Friday was not a productive day. I didn’t write any words, and I had an early finish for a hair appointment. We bought a birthday gift for my father-in-law and took that over to him, then did the shopping on the way home.

Weekend
On Saturday Monkey Dust had a gig in Doncaster, for a wedding. The rest of the weekend was spent pottering around the house, emptying more boxes, baking, and showing some friends around the new place.

Monday 18 July 2016
On Monday I acknowledged and replied to critiques received over the weekend. They slowed down, but as the story was still on a queue, tenacious critters were still able to read it.

I slept in late, so didn’t get as much done during the morning as I like to, but in the afternoon I created Act 2 on Scrivener for CATCH THE RAINBOW and all of the chapter and scene cards. I only wrote 714 words, but that’s my daily target to achieve 15,000 for the month, and I suspected I was already over that anyway, so didn’t beat myself up.

Tuesday 19 July 2016
Yesterday started with a bit of a mystery, the bird table had disappeared only moments after I saw one of the peacocks on top of it. The peacock was at the front of the house by the time I got downstairs, and the bird table was gone. The bird had knocked it over the edge, and it was nearly broken into 2 pieces. So I put it aside for the poet to repair when he got home from work.

I did most of my morning chores, apart from the weekly job search. Once the news takes effect, I won’t have time to do other work, so I’m weaning myself off it early – I don’t need encouragement to do that!

I didn’t write any words. It was far too hot to sit at the computer, or to do anything much. So I read and faffed for most of the day. And when I did check my monthly word-count, I was delighted to see that it was 16,937 words, already 1,937 over my target. I shan’t sit back on my laurels, though. It just means any further words from today onwards (and it’s cooler today so there will be more words) will be a bonus for the month – or I can bank them for when I take 2 weeks off in August.

Homework w/c 20 July 2016
The plan this week, then, is to start practising for the new regime. I’m hoping that very soon I’ll be writing in the mornings and editing in the afternoons, so that means no more daily surveys or weekly job searches, and not as many competition entries. When I do the diary tomorrow, I’ll be basing it on this.

This means that when I’m not working on novels, I’ll be working on short stories. When I don’t have any stories to work on, I’ll look at the article writing process. And if that’s all up to date, it’ll be non-fiction books. At some point I hope to be able to fit in some study work too, as that’s fiction writing as well.

In the afternoons I’ll be editing, and if I don’t have any client books in to edit, I’ll edit my own.

What are you up to this week?

Diary of a freelance writer: 13 July 2016

This week’s post is a little late today, due to a bit of a shock email I received this morning. It took me most of the day to recover! But at least it’s still Wednesday, and it’s still been a very good week.

Wednesday 6 July 2016
Wednesday morning was spent, as usual, on the usual daily chores. I also wrote 824 words for a blog post.

In the afternoon I joined a writers’ critique forum. I’m missing impartial, constructive feedback on my work and have just about given up all hope of finding a real-time face-to-face writers’ group. So I asked around for an online forum, and this one was recommended to another friend of mine who was whingeing about how most writers’ forums are a bit cliquey and back-slappy. This one doesn’t look at all like that … yet.

I wrote 1,062 words for CATCH THE RAINBOW, and I did some basic joining admin for the critique forum as well as my first critique. I wrote 588 words for that. Each critique of around that length earns me one “credit”. I need three “credits” to upload one of my own stories for criticism, but they give you 2 to say welcome as well. So I’d already “earned” my first crit back, but I didn’t use it yet.

Thursday 7 July 2016
On Thursday morning, gig list admin and diary work were added to the morning chores, then the afternoon writing session started with 321 words for CATCH THE RAINBOW.

I tried to format MARDI GRAS on Scrivener, but it didn’t want to play today and I gave up in the end. Then I backed up both the latest Scrivener and Word files of CATCH THE RAINBOW to memory stick. I need to try and do this at the end of each session in future. That way I’ll always have it to work on if anything happens to the desktop or I lose the files on the desktop.

Friday 8 July 2016
On Friday morning I wrote 346 words for a blog post after all of the morning chores. In the afternoon I wrote 725 words for CATCH THE RAINBOW and I joined a history forum. Every time I Google something for CATCH THE RAINBOW, there’s a link to this forum. So I joined it and hope to use it more often.

A new word-counter made it onto the sidebar, so everyone can see how CATCH THE RAINBOW is doing this time.

Weekend
At the weekend, we had a slightly more local gig for Monkey Dust, and we went out on Sunday (after a very late start due to quite a late night).

Monday 11 July 2016
The first thing I did Monday morning was a 30-minute yoga session. I’d like to build this in at least 3 times a week, but I need to build up slowly. I may fit in another tomorrow morning (Thursday), but so long as it’s there once a week for now, that will be fine.

The morning’s chores included a quick visit to the new critique forum, and I wrote 730 words for a blog post. The rest of the day consisted of housework – lots and lots and LOTS of washing.

Tuesday 12 July 2016
After the previous day’s mammoth laundry session, I didn’t do a speck of housework today. Instead I pitched for 4 editing jobs and wrote a 533-word crit for the forum in the morning.

In the afternoon, I formatted my first story to go up on the forum and I wrote 607 words for CATCH THE RAINBOW.

Homework w/c 13 July 2016
Once I get confirmation of this morning’s shocking, but very pleasant, news, I’ll know how my week will pan out. If nothing is confirmed just yet, then it will be more of the same.

I have a book I need to edit and format and get into production, and I have other books that need to be converted to ebook format. So aside from any writing, I’ll be very busy doing that.

I’m also in the middle of an editing job for a client and, of course, I’ll be interacting with the forum and seeing how many replies I get.

What are you up to this week?

Diary of a freelance writer: 6 July 2016

I’ve had a very writerly week, which is always a good sign. I’m building the blocks for a 6-part “family saga” in Scrivener. And I started to get the itch again to find a decent criticism group for constructive feedback.

Wednesday 29 June 2016
It started last Wednesday . I wrote 674 words for the blog and did 2 extra chores – publicity and job surfing.

Then I settled down for a couple of hours and managed to write 1,347 words for CATCH THE RAINBOW. (Hurrah!)

The day finished with a couple more hours on a client editing job.

Thursday 30 June 2016
On Thursday morning the first job was, as usual, after the daily and household chores, gig list admin. I also managed an “extra”, studying Module 7 for my fiction writing course.

I wrote another 1,144 words for CATCH THE RAINBOW, then uploaded a load of information for the project to the project folder on Scrivener. This increased the running word-count considerably (almost 4-fold).

As I was tidying all of my old notes on the computer, I stumbled across another novel that was finished a long time ago for the Lichfield Prize, but it never went anywhere. So I copied and pasted that into a new file in Scrivener too.

I finished the editing job and got it sent back to the client.

Friday 1 July 2016
Friday was new diary day! I use an academic year diary and it always starts on 1 July. As it was the first day of the month, my Excel tracker for July was also set-up. This shows what I’m working on for this month, target word-count, actual word-count and which draft I should be working on for which story/article/filler/RTE/etc.

I wrote 286 words for a blog post and wrote a further 1,307 words for CATCH THE RAINBOW.

I feel as though I really need to use Scrivener at every opportunity, so that I get used to the masses of things that it apparently does for you. I’m starting with the basic template and doing everything I need to do myself – splitting it into acts, parts, chapters, whatever; get it to print the headings I want it to print and not the ones that Scrivener wants it to print; changing fonts, page layouts, etc.

Once I feel as though I’ve mastered all of that, then I’ll use the templates that come with the software. I’ve always been one for learning things the long way before learning the short cuts. At least then I know what the short cuts are actually doing for me, and if ever the short cuts don’t work, I also know how to fix things the long way.

With this in mind, I went through all of my novels – in progress and in complete draft form – and transferred them all to Scrivener. I now have the following “complete” novels awaiting revision:

  • CHINA
  • MARDI GRAS (last year’s NaNoWriMo project)

And the following awaiting completion:

  • WHITEHORSE FARM
  • HATTIE’S HOTSHOTS (book 4 of the 6-part “family saga”)
  • plus the makings of 4 other books in the “family saga” collection, of which CATCH THE RAINBOW forms book 6
  • THE BEAST WITHIN: A MARCIE CRAIG MYSTERY (book 2)
  • THE FOOL (Stevie Tarot book 1)

At some point, when I have less work to do (ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha), I may also transfer over NIGHT CRAWLER: A MARCIE CRAIG MYSTERY (book 1) to Scrivener.

As it was Friday, I raised an invoice (hurrah!), did the first (ahem!)  “weekly” critical data backup in a LONG while, and I finished transferring photographs on Facebook to the “Days Out 2015” folder.

And I had an early finish!

Weekend
We had the weekend off. So we closed the gate on Friday evening and didn’t open it again until Monday morning. Then we spent the “free” time doing loads of things around the new house – gardening, DIY projects, baking, cooking and unpacking boxes.

Monday 4 July 2016
Monday was another good and busy day. I wrote 509 words for a blog post, and I wrote another 2,350 words for CATCH THE RAINBOW. Then I spent a couple of hours on Scrivener trying to “fix” the formatting so it looks how I want it to look when it exports to Word.

Tuesday 5 July 2016
After the usual daily chores, yesterday’s first job was the new weekly job surf. There weren’t any that I fancied, though, so I didn’t pitch at all.

I wrote 3,497 words for CATCH THE RAINBOW, and then I started a new editing job for a client.

Homework w/c 6 July 2016
This week’s objective will be to keep up the momentum, continue to write CATCH THE RAINBOW, continue to build the world and characters for the 6-book saga, continue to familiarise myself with Scrivener, and finish the current editing job.

I’m also looking at an online writing forum and may upload the next few new stories there to get some feedback. These stories need to be out earning their keep, but it’s always good to get impartial, constructive feedback if possible.

What are you up to this week?