Monday, July 21, 2014

Peter Ainsley... in Triplicate

I hit a milestone this summer. I published my third novel, which also happens to be the third instalment of the Peter Ainsley mystery series.

THE DEAD AMONG US continues the story of Peter & Margaret who face off against a horrendous criminal who is targeting pauper children.

It's been such a wild ride writing these books, and self-publishing them has been just wild. I remember agonizing over what to do with Chorus of the Dead. I wondered at the validity of self-publishing and whether the publishing industry would look favourably at my choice. All three of my books are now ranked in Kindle's Top 100 for mystery/thrillers-historicals. They generate hundreds of downloads each each month, narrowing in on one thousand for July. This translates as a nice income for myself, compensating me nicely for the hours of dedicated work I put in to each title.

But there's still work to be done.

Mystery is a difficult genre to compete in. I still have less than 10 reviews for each of my books and often that muddies the waters regarding my success. I honestly don't know how to generate more reviews. I don't believe in hard core soliciting or creating duplicate accounts (sock-puppeting). I don't believe in spamming my twitter feed or spending hundreds of dollars on internet ads. What I do believe in is a good story and that is where I lay my focus. I want to tell the best story I possibly can.

Recently another indie pointed out to me that I am a slow writer. Each of my books have been published a year a part whereas others aim to have a new title every 3-4 months.  I may not be out-selling other indie-authors  and my sales maybe paltry compared those in erotica or fantasy but I stand by my stories. I stand by my process, slow as it may be.

I do not see self-publishing as a get rich quick scheme. I have been writing and educating myself on writing since I was in high school. I majored in Journalism in college and achieved an advanced diploma in Creative Writing shortly thereafter. The only thing I have ever wanted to be was a writer so I can safely say I am not going anywhere.

I will continue to write compelling stories with layered characters and fabulous covers (cheeky, aren't I?). I have recognized a trend with each of my books, a steady incline in readership and loyalty. This is what I will build my career upon, without chasing trends or including gratuitous sex.

I am a writer.