By Alex Kava
I just launched novel #23!
Actually, I completed the manuscript months ago, but the book was just released into the world December 17th. As an author I’ve always wavered back and forth about when to celebrate a new book. When I was traditionally published, sending the finished manuscript to my editor was the time to celebrate. Edits were still to come, but my job was mostly over. At least until book tour, which usually was many months away.
Now as an indie author, completing the manuscript is simply one step in the publishing process of turning it into a book and getting it out to readers. There might be a sigh of relief before I plunge back in, but it’s not enough to sit back and celebrate.
Despite having others handle various tasks, I’m more hands-on in the editing process along with the cover design and formatting print as well as the ebook. As soon as the audiobook narrator has finished, I’m listening and making notes.
While I’m waiting in between, I’m planning and scheduling promotions. There are foreign rights to be negotiated. No one wants to be left too far behind when it’s a series. Any one of these steps deserve to be celebrated. Signing a new foreign contract or seeing the cover design—either one is like Christmas…for a day, and then it’s back to the next step.
I suppose I should say there are small celebrations along the way.
Because we offer our readers a personalized and signed hardcover directly from my WebShop, I gift them a limited edition bookmark. The one I designed this year surprised even me. It’s metal with etchings and pawprint cutouts. The day we received those in the mail, we were amazed and pleased and celebrated…for few hours.
When the hardcovers are delivered, it’s always exciting. We didn’t even mind unloading the shipment of thirty-one cases. Opening up the first box and getting my hands on it is cause for celebration. We reveled in how cool the purple streak through the sky of black turned out. But only for a moment or two, then we got to unpacking and stacking and signing and wrapping.
This year we did something new for our readers. Along with print versions, we started selling ebooks at our WebShop, so readers could order directly. I’m always looking for ways to thank my readers and offer them something special. If they ordered directly from my WebShop they got their ebooks a week early. And their hardcovers shipped early, too. By the time Midnight Creed was released, my readers were already sharing photos and reviews on Facebook. I loved hearing how much they were enjoying the book even while I was finishing preparations for the “official” launch.
Now the book is out in the world. In January there are still interviews and podcasts and more promotions to oversee. But for the next week, I think we will finally celebrate .
Alex Kava is the New York Times, USA Today and Amazon bestselling author of twenty-one novels that include the critically acclaimed series featuring K9 handler Ryder Creed and the international bestselling series with FBI profiler Maggie O’Dell. She’s been awarded two Nebraska Book Awards, a Florida Book Award and the Mari Sandoz Award. Published in thirty-two countries, her novels have sold over six million copies and have appeared on bestseller lists in the UK, Australia, Germany, Poland, Italy, and Japan. When she’s not writing, Alex enjoys spending time with her pack of Westies who are definitely not as well trained as Ryder Creed’s dogs.