I am delighted to welcome Julie Stock back to the blog this week!
When I was last on Heidi's blog, I was just about to publish my debut novel, 'From Here to Nashville' and was full of excitement for the unexpected road ahead. It has now been just over four months since my book was launched on to Amazon and Heidi has asked me to reflect back on how things have gone since publication.
My standard answer to the question, 'How are sales of your book going?' is slow but steady and whilst I'm nowhere near a bestseller yet (!), I have been pleased with the sales of this, my debut novel. As a self-published author, it is a lot of constant hard work to try and make your book visible, even harder, dare I say it, than it is for authors who have a traditional contract with a publisher. After these four months, I have realised that the best advice really is to write the next book because with more than one book out there, there are many more marketing opportunities, especially if the books are part of a series. More of that later.
It has been a long old slog to get reviews and yet I know that there are many people who have bought the book either from Amazon or directly from me in paperback form but they haven't yet got round to writing a review. It may be of course, that they haven't read the book yet and I have to sympathise with that when my own TBR pile is so big. However, reviews really are so important for showing other readers that your book is worth buying.
I did giveaway a number of copies to book reviewers and have had some lovely reviews back as a result. On the other hand, I have given some away and not heard any more and that's been a tough one to accept. It makes me very grateful for the reviews I have had and I'm always hopeful of getting more.
I have been very lucky in the friendships I have made with other authors via social media and The Romantic Novelists' Association so that when my book was about to be launched, I was easily able to set up a blog tour for the couple of weeks before the launch as well as the whole week of the launch itself. This was great fun and I continue to be amazed by the people who generously offer me slots on their blogs even now. It is a great way of getting your name known to write guest posts for other blogs and I really enjoy doing it too so I am always open to requests. I have also started an Author Spotlight feature on my own blog, which is already booked up till the end of the year and is one way that I can pay back that generosity of spirit.
I am busy writing my second book now. This book isn't related to my first book at all but a lot of my readers have expressed an interest in knowing what happens to some of the characters in 'From Here to Nashville' so as soon as I finish my first draft of book two and submit it to the RNA for its reader's report, I am planning to write a novella about one of the characters from book one. This will be a free story to my email list subscribers, which is another thing I'm trying to build up! Never a dull moment :)
From Here to Nashville
Two worlds, 4,000 miles apart. Can music unite them?
Rachel Hardy dreams of being a successful country music singer in Nashville’s Music City, four thousand miles away from her lonely life in Dorset.
When Jackson Phillips, an independent record label owner, encourages her band to audition for a nationwide ‘Open Mic’ competition, she decides they have nothing to lose.
But when she starts to fall in love with Jackson, the stakes suddenly get higher and she finds herself with a great big dilemma on her hands. Should she abandon her dream and take the easy way out or should she leave the life she has always known behind and take a gamble on a man who has personal demons of his own?
Follow Rachel and Jackson as they learn to trust in love again and to see whether music really can bring them together.
About the Author
Julie Stock is an author of contemporary romance novels, novellas and short stories. She is a proud member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s New Writers’ Scheme and is a Member of The Alliance of Independent Authors.
She blogs about her path to publication on her website, ‘My Writing Life’ www.juliestock.wordpress.com. You can also connect with her on Twitter, on Goodreads and via her Facebook Author Page.
When she is not writing, she works part-time as a teacher. She is married with two teenage daughters and lives with her family in Bedfordshire.