Give us a release date already!

Since announcing that I’d be publishing my book in August, I’ve been getting the inevitable question, what day in August?  An understandable question, but I haven’t been able to answer it very specifically, so I thought I’d take a moment to explain why.
First, let me explain how traditional publishing works.  After all the behind-the-scenes work is finished (the writing, editing, selling of the manuscript to a publisher, etc.), the book gets printed and a release date is set.  Then the race is on.  Publicists jump into action, and the book is promoted by skywriters, smoke signals, million-dollar television ads (I might have made those up), social media blitzes, and other creative methods.  This time is precious because there is a very short period to create a buzz for the book before the release date.
Why is this so important?  Because the real estate on a bookstore bookshelf is a very valuable and a very expensive commodity.  Having your book shelved face out is even more costly.  Want your book promoted on those highly visible front tables near the store’s main door?  Even more expensive.  Once your book hits those shelves, the clock starts, and you have a very small window to sell.  And by very small window, I mean two to three weeks.  If your book isn’t selling like hotcakes, retailers will pack up your books and send them back to the publisher for a refund.  After that, your only choice as a reader is to order the book online and hope it doesn’t go out of print as time goes on.  The uncertainty of future availability applies mostly to new and relatively unknown authors, but more and more to best-selling ones too.
Ah, but I’m not publishing a print book, remember?  So those rules don’t apply to me!  I’m flying solo on this Enterprise (Scotty: “I’m giving her all she’s got, Captain!”   James T. Kirk: “All she’s got isn’t good enough! What else ya got?”).  I’m not dealing with bookshelf real estate, retailers who want a refund, and I don’t have an agent and publisher who want to be paid.  This means I can make my own rules, knowing my book won’t disappear into the ether at the slightest puff of a breeze.  No, my books are immortal in a way, always available, always accessible, and always for sale because they are digital which means they are always discoverable, even if it takes adoring fans several years to realize that they actually are adoring fans.
I am currently doing one final edit of the book, and once all of that is finished up, I can upload the book to my distributor who will then send it out to retailers.  If I’m lucky, it will reach those retailers at approximately the same time and I can announce the release date (most likely the end of the month).  If the process moves more quickly than I think, I will set up a pre-order for the book.
So stay tuned, and I promise that I will keep posting updates as I have more to share!

Hey, it’s my first blog post!

I wrote a book!  Yay, me!  Those of you who know me personally may be wondering to yourself: Self, I didn’t know Stephanie was a writer…?  (*looks around and leans in to whisper*)  I’ll tell you a secret: I didn’t know I was a writer either until late 2011.  Though in retrospect, the clues were so obvious all my life that I must be rather thick-headed not to have noticed before.  The story of self-discovery, of the day I was smacked over the head (figuratively of course) with this realization, will have to wait for a future blog post.  In it I will confess the entire story by way of an interview with the person I blame… er… thank… for getting me started on my novel-writing-journey.  I’ve already suckered her into agreeing to let me interview her.  [insert evil genius cackle here, with appropriate sound effects of thunder and ominous flashes of lightning]

When can I get my hands on this brilliant work of literature?  Well, you can’t.  Not yet at least, because it won’t be released until the end of the summer.  And you won’t actually be able to get your hands on it even then — at least not in the traditional sense.  You’ll be able to buy the book, but it will be digital only.  No print edition for the paper-addicts in the bunch.  I love the feel of a nice, heavy, “real” book in my hands as much as the next person, so I admit that not having a print copy is a bit of a let-down, but a minor one only.

Okay, so who is the publisher, and where can I buy said tome?  Well… I’m it.  I’m the publisher.  And I’m my own agent, so you’ll have to talk to me about anything on the business end of things regarding the book.  The book will be available for purchase as an e-book at most online retailers like Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and iBooks, just to name a few.

Why did you self-publish?  Answering that question will require a bit more space than I have left in this post, though the simplistic answer is that I’m self-publishing by choice first rather than because I had no other choice.

In coming blog posts I hope to provide author interviews, book reviews, as well as my musings on writing in general and some “behind-the-scenes” information about The Scribe’s Daughter.  In the meantime, feel free to contact me by visiting the “Contact Me” page of my website.

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Thanks for reading!