Hello again Readers
Exactly one year ago today I uploaded my first book to the Kindle Book Store on Amazon. Launched on a wing and a prayer, it was the realisation of a dream. I sent no drafts away to publishers or agents. I was using modern technology to become a self published author or “Indie” writer. It was a steep learning curve with many problems to solve. E-books are not like standard books and you never really know how the upload and conversion process will change the layout of your book. It took me six revisions to be finally satisfied. No writer can ever judge demand or interest for their books or writing. Publishing your book is one thing, getting publicity for it is quite another. The key question is this… will people actually pay for my book? My knowledge and understanding of how search engines work came in very handy. By using blogs from WordPress and building in the right words my first book was soon appearing on page 1 of a google search for my target keywords. I also used a local history forum to publicize my book. One year later and I pleased and proud to report that my first book Saville’s Spinney has been downloaded over 1000 times. I have received four royalty cheques from Amazon totalling £558.43 and that was not for the full twelve months. I realise that may be small beer to some but I am more than content. I am getting consistent sales and have 8 reviews, 7 of which are 5 stars!
I have not let the grass grow under my feet! Buoyed by the reception for my first book I started looking for another interesting historical crime story. As with my first book I found it whilst looking for something entirely different. I traced a list of executions in Nottingham in the 1800s and came across a reference to murderers who did not hang. This lead me to the amazing story of Sarah Barber so I was back on the research trail again. I completed my research for the second book with two visits to the Central Library in Nottingham in March 2015. My second book “Arsenic Sally” was published on Amazon on the 1st of April. I am currently researching material for my third book, again about historical crime. I see no end to this new publishing venture. There are so many leads to follow and so many interesting stories to bring to print so I should be busy for years.
Away from my self-publishing I also formed a new writing group for fellow spirits in my local U3A – a society for retired people like myself. I want to help fellow writers and support them with their own writing ventures. In short it has been a very interesting and productive twelve months. I have to be honest and admit if my first book had sunk without trace on Amazon I doubt I would have continued. That said I knew I had found an amazing story and an interesting way to write it. I am exploiting skills I have had for many years and know how to search and find information. I have been trained to write accounts from primary sources and also to analyse and understand information. Importantly I am determined and able to work to deadlines and targets. I hope there will be many more books to come and see no reason why that should not come to pass. For those who may like to see my writing I have provided links below to my two books on Amazon where you can look inside and read the first two or three chapters free of charge.
This is Indie writer and self-published author Mike Sheridan signing off for now. Good luck with your reading and writing ventures. For those who may be thinking about writing and or publishing a book I have a message! What the hell are you waiting for?