If you don’t know, I have stopped doing Kindle Vella because the concept I was working on with that novel was too similar to another idea I had. It is one that I like better, and one that I want to take the chance on and submit for traditional publishing. Meaning, I am going to try to submit to an agent and hopefully from there a publisher. Rather than publish my work serially either through Dreame the app that I write for or with Kindle Vella I am going to be doing this the regular way. So I am writing the whole novel out before putting it up anywhere and I am SUPER excited about how it is coming along. And I hope all goes well and I will find a way to get it out in the world.
I hit 60 k on what I’m calling The Magic School Novel. This is the novel that I am planning on submitting to agents and publishers once it is finished. I am pleasantly pleased with this because I normally write serially. This means I basically post my novel daily and write as I go.
I started doing this because I was frustrated with the publishing process. It’s LONG. First, you’ve got to get an agent. Then, the agent has to find an editor for you. Then you’ve got to go through edits. And then, finally, your book gets published.
When I found Dreame in 2018, it seemed like a simple enough way to get published. And it does take a lot less time to get published with them than anywhere else because it is serial fiction.
However, there are limitations in writing serially. It’s a lot harder to get an audience this way as it is based on all of your work. And not, say, a publisher’s connections with a publicity team. Or your agents helping you spread the word about your book.
I was so burnt out on hearing NO time and time again for things I thought were brilliant stories that serial fiction just seemed like a good option. But I realized to do the things I want to do as an author, like have a wide reach, I’m probably going to need an agent for that.
So, I am going to try traditional publishing again. This time with what I’m simply calling The Magic School Novel. And I haven’t written for traditional publishing in such a long time. You know, where you write out the full thing, and then edit, and edit again, and again and then send it out HOPING someone notices enough to sign it.
60 k is the furthest I’ve gotten on a project I’ve considered for traditional publication. I’m super excited about this. The concept is something I’ve been working on since 2018. I’ve got a good feeling about it. I can’t explain it.
So, last year in December and November I went through a lot of changes. I quit doing the Kindle Vella thing because I was so disappointed with the results. I also decided that I was going to focus on traditional publishing again after meeting with an editor and pitching an idea that I’ve been working on since 2018.
I’ve focused on writing this novel instead of any other projects aside from my Dreame fiction which is the only place I’m making money right now with my writing. This is the first time in a long time I’ve been attached to an idea long enough to write it the traditional way. You know, write, and then edit, and then submit a million times to try and get it published.
I’m not going to say much about it except that it is fantasy and involves a magic school.
I decided to focus on traditional publishing because I realized I don’t think I’ll be able to get to where I want by self-publishing. I don’t have a wide enough audience. Plus, this time will be different. I’m not a 20 something without a single published book to her name. I’ve got thirteen books published.
I’m convinced that this time it is going to be different. I know a lot more about writing and I’m excited to see where this is going to go. So, I’m going to be updating you on my progress and hopefully, you’ll follow along. Let’s see if I can get traditionally published shall we?
I hit 40 k or 40,000 words on this project and I am super excited. It’s something I have always wanted to write but was hesitant to do because I didn’t want it to be like the million magic school books that are already out there. But I think I’ve finally found a way to make this one mine. And I can’t wait to finish it and find a way to get it out in the world.
So I had some stuff that kind of threw me for a loop involving my job and that is why I haven’t really been posting. But here is the good news—-I’ve got 39 k of the magic school novel I am writing. I’m currently taking a digital marketing course on hubspot and learning some new skills. I am free of a place that drove me crazy and have the chance to go find something new.
Yeah, things are going to be difficult but I firmly believe something good is going to come my way. Things are going to change. And I’m writing this post to remind me of that. Also, if you want to support me right now—The Wolves of Glacier Falls—-is completely free on Dreame and if I get 500 followers on there I can apply for the pay to read program. I’m super close at 170!
So, I took a break. Like a big one. I had to stop and think about if it was worth the effort for me to try and continue to post on Kindle Vella. Especially considering that I have a platform that actually pays me (Dreame). It got to be too discouraging to continue looking at stats and things and I have a concept that I like better of the story that I’m writing that I worry will be too similar. So.
The Anointed is still up. You can still read it on there if you wish. But there are so many changes that need to happen with the platform that I don’t think I’ll be using it going forward.
I took the time to figure out what I really wanted and while I do still think self-publishing is important, I’m not at a place where I can go all in and get the kind of audience I’m hoping for. So, it’s time to jump into traditional publishing again. This means finishing a manuscript instead of publishing it serially which is something I haven’t done in a long time.
I’m working on a manuscript right now that is at 22 k that is an adult fantasy romance novel. And I’m super excited about it. So, that’s where I’ve been.
Goals for the month:
- Get The Anointed up to 100 k, so I’ve got a few chapters ahead.
- Work on The Wolves of Glacier Falls, get that finished for Dreame.
- Start working on The Magic School novel.
- Work on UX design class again to finish up certification for writing app I want to create.
Okay, so maybe if I pick some goals I’ll be able to say motivated. It is so easy to become a hermit in Montana the instant fall and winter hit. It is colder, and darker. And for me, who grew up in California always surrounded by vitamin D and going to a place where half the year the sun is gone, its also SEASONAL DEPRESSION TIME. Or, as I like to call it, my yearly sadness. Not to make light of it at all but you’ve got to have a little humor about it right?
But this year I am going to try to stay on top of things and get back into the swing of things with updating. Re-read my story, and try to figure out what will happen going forward.
I also want to pick something specifically for Kindle Vella to write and I’ve thought a lot about how to make that platform work for me. I think a mystery might be what I write next for it because that is an easy way to hook people. Or maybe I’ll do a contemporary romance. Who knows? But I’ve decided that the type of project might factor into how well a serial novel does. Things were people have to remember a lot of facts might not do so well, whereas simple beach read type fiction is probably going to get a lot more reads because people can pick up where they left off.
I might be wrong about that, but it is something I’ve thought about a lot lately.
I dropped the ball. The holiday season is upon us. It is getting colder. It has already started to snow where I live, which means I spend all day in a cold apartment doing my “real job” and by the end of the day, I have no motivation. On top of which, I ended up with a sinus thing and was out of commission for about two weeks.
I can finally breathe through my nose again. Miracle of miracles. The thing about winter is that once it comes, I lose all motivation and I have no energy to do anything. I keep on convincing myself I need to update, and that I want to update, but my heart isn’t in it.
I’m excited about other projects at the moment but trying to get excited about a book no one is paying attention to on a platform no one is paying attention to is extremely difficult. Perhaps if I updated more, that might change things. I don’t know. Maybe I’ll sit down on my day off and do a hardcore writing day for The Anointed and schedule my chapters several weeks out. Who knows?
Previously, I’ve talked about other publishing scandals in this blog. Such as the Webnovel incident with them sending out pamphlets to their writers discouraging them from criticizing the Chinese Government or talking about political events. I’ve talked about why I feel self-publishing is an important thing as well. Recently, The New York Times has reported that The Biden Administration is rejecting a $2.18 Billion dollar merger between Random House and Simon & Schuster. The argument is that such a merger would affect author advances making them lower, and make it so that the company making the acquisition has more control over the industry as a whole. “If the world’s largest book publisher is permitted to acquire one of its biggest rivals, it will have unprecedented control over this important industry,” Attorney General Merrick B. Garland said in a statement accompanying the lawsuit. “American authors and consumers will pay the price of this anticompetitive merger — lower advances for authors and ultimately fewer books and less variety for consumers.”
You can read the full article from The New York Times here: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/11/02/books/penguin-random-house-simon-schuster-merger-lawsuit.html
This is such a weird thing to be writing. When Kindle Vella originally launched, I was SO EXCITED. I thought: okay, this is it. This is going to provide writers a way to have a platform that makes money online. It’s not going to have any costs associated with it and its going to democratize the publishing industry.
16 weeks in, and I have been so annoyed with the program that I literally didn’t update for an entire month because I saw no point. It’s not that I don’t care about the story I am writing or think its not good enough or whatever. I have success on other platforms, so clearly I can do this.
That’s the thing of it though. I have success on other platforms.
I’ve been on Dreame for three years, and I finally had my biggest month on there. My stories are finally earning decent payouts. People are reading my stuff.
Meanwhile, I am putting time and effort into the story for a platform I so desperately want to believe in that just hasn’t delivered. As far as I know, there is still no app. Nothing that makes kindle vella stand out for people to find it unless you are a writer.
Lets be honest. Why would people look for serial fiction they have to pay individual episodes for, when they can download full books on kindle for free? The program set up is messed up and as of right now, kindle vella doesn’t even HAVE a kindle option.
If being part of the kindle program were an option, it might make a difference. But it isn’t as far as I know.
I still want the program to succeed. I would like for my work to succeed on there. But as of right now, my plans for future novels involve publishing and growing on Dreame unless there are dramatic changes.
If you are a writer looking for a non traditional publishing platform, you might try Dreame as well. Dreame itself is heavily romance themed but Dreame is run by Stary LTD Publishing and they have sister websites like Ringdom and a few others that you can submit a variety of things to.
They also have contests and writing classes all done online. The contests are great because you can win publishing contracts, covers, and money as well as exposure on the website. I haven’t participated in the writing classes because that isn’t really my jam. I like learning, just in person when its offered.
Am I still continuing with this project? Yes. But I’m not nearly as excited as I once was and I’m not too worried about updating on a specific schedule because of lack of interest. In fact, I think I have more people reading my blogs on kindle vella than actually reading my story on kindle vella.
But Dreame has an app. And a website for its writers. And a community. And it doesn’t feel like wasted time when I post on there. So for now, if you are looking to publish serially, give Dreame and its partner websites a try.
October was the month of doing nothing. I barely updated. I got distracted by a writers conference I attended. I started work on a werewolf novel and then that werewolf novel got messed up by my computer so I am restarting that novel. I had a bad sinus thing and so everything got messed up. I put off working on the UX class.
Not a lot got done. My own fault. But sometimes that happens. You slip up, and then you get back to it. So, November will be the month of getting back to it.
The hard thing is getting excited about a project that isn’t seeing any growth or readership. While I still like the story, there are other projects I’m passionate about right now. It feels like pulling teeth trying to post on something that doesn’t seem to be going anywhere.
Obviously, not posting this month is an issue. And I know there are things I need to work out on my end. But kindle vella itself has issues and its just easier to work with Dreame where I do have an established audience and I actually, you know, get paid.
A new month. A new chance to see if we can make this work.