This Week in Self-Publishing: A Quick Revisions Update

This Week

Books sold: 14 ebooks, 0 paperbacks

Money earned: $19.80

Money spent: $0

Total

Books sold: 330 ebooks, 136 paperbacks

Money earned (book sales): $1,235.56

Money earned (Patreon): $6,909

Money spent: $4,820.71


Here’s where I am with the revisions:

I’m doing pretty well. I’m realizing that there are a few sections that still worry me; they were originally on the list to get cut/revised, but when I re-read them I was like these are the most honest parts.

They just aren’t the most flattering parts.

(It’s awkward to write about characters behaving badly in shall-we-say-ordinary ways. We’re used to characters making Big Mistakes or having Tragic Flaws or being Just Plain Evil, but we’re not used to sympathetic characters being ungenerous or insensitive or casually cruel.)

That’s all I want to say about that right now because I’m still thinking about a lot of stuff—and because there’s a lot of other stuff for all of us to think about, right now.

So…  take care, y’all, and I’ll check in again next week. ❤️

 

This Week in Self-Publishing: Did the $1.99 Sale SELL?

This Week

Books sold: 44 ebooks, 0 paperbacks

Money earned: $58.92

Money spent: $0

Total

Books sold: 316 ebooks, 136 paperbacks

Money earned (book sales): $1,215.76

Money earned (Patreon): $6,909

Money spent: $4,820.71


Today is the last day that The Biographies of Ordinary People: Volume 1: 1989–2000 will be available for $1.99. Starting tomorrow, the ebook price will go back up to $3.99 and stay that way until… probably next summer.

So, if you haven’t yet purchased your $1.99 ebook, now’s your chance:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Apple iBooks | Google Play | Kobo

During this week’s sale, I ran promos on both ReadingDeals and ManyBooks; the ReadingDeals promo ran last Friday and the ManyBooks promo ran on Sunday.

In both cases, neither promo performed as well as just setting the price to $1.99.

As you can see from the screenshot at the top of this post, my best sales day was Tuesday, September 19. That’s the day the book was first priced at $1.99 and, assumedly, a bunch of people got notifications suggesting they go buy it.

I got 43 sales that day.

I got 44 sales this entire week.

The ReadingDeals and ManyBooks promos cost me $53 total, so they earned back the cost of promotion, though I’m not sure how many of this week’s purchases came from ReadingDeals/ManyBooks links vs. friends and readers sharing my book sale on social media.

I’ve done four of these book promos so far—ReadingDeals, ManyBooks, and two BargainBooksy promos—and it seems like they bring in about 15–20 sales each. I still have the Fussy Librarian promo in early October, so I’ll be curious to see how that one goes.

I should also note that, thanks to the 43 sales on Tuesday, September 19, I hit #75 in my category. Here’s the Pronoun screenshot:

As we know from the first BargainBooksy promo, it took 19 sales for me to hit #120 in Literary Sagas; if it takes 43 sales for me to hit #75, then I could theoretically figure out just how many sales it might take to hit #1.

(In Literary Sagas, not all of Amazon.)

So. The distance between 19 and 43 is 24, and the distance between 120 and 75 is 45, so it took 24 sales to advance 45 ranking points, which means you move one ranking point for every 1.88 sales, except it probably doesn’t really work like that, it probably takes more sales to go from 100 to 75 than it does to go from 120 to 100, so… I am not quite good enough at math to figure this out!

Plus you’re not only competing against your own sales, you’re competing against everyone else’s sales. If someone else’s book takes off, everyone else’s book ranking drops.

Which means… yeah, there are too many variables for me to calculate this. I could roughly estimate that if I sold 226 books in one day I would be a lot closer to #1 in Literary Sagas, but that’s literally saying “if I sold more books I’d be closer to #1,” so… not helpful.

On the subject of book sales, I recently wrote a piece for Pronoun’s The Verbs about whether I can consider myself a successful self-published author:

I’m very curious about how all of you define success, because I absolutely feel like a success every time I look at anything but my sales numbers. Everything from reviews to revenue has been great for me, so far—and, if I look at the data from Goodreads and Amazon, great for my readers.

But I still haven’t sold 500 books.

I used the number 500 because of that old “most self-published books don’t even sell 500 copies” warning statistic, imagine a spooky ghost saying most people who dooooo this faaaaaail, except the funny thing is that, because of the $1.99 sale, I am suddenly very close to selling my first 500 copies.

Which means I can say that I FOR SURE AM A SUCCESS, TAKE THAT SPOOKY GHOST!

Part of me really wants to see what would happen if I priced my book at $0.99.

But I know that the whole point of a sale is that you have to bring it back to the regular price after a certain period of time and keep it there.

So buy Biographies Vol. 1 today, if you want that $1.99 deal. ❤️

This Week in Self-Publishing: My Book Is ON SALE

This Week

Books sold: 50 ebooks, 1 paperback

Money earned: $79.53

Money spent: $53 (on ReadingDeals and ManyBooks promos)

Total

Books sold: 272 ebooks, 136 paperbacks

Money earned (book sales): $1,156.84

Money earned (Patreon): $6,909

Money spent: $4,820.71


BIG NEWS Y’ALL: The Biographies of Ordinary People: Volume 1: 1989–2000 ebook is ON SALE for $1.99. 

This deal was featured on ReadingDeals this morning and will be featured on ManyBooks on Sunday. Here’s the ReadingDeals promo, if you want to see how it looks:

My current Amazon ranking is #37,052 in all books and #216 in Litfic Sagas. That’s about where I was with my second BargainBooksy promo, and since I haven’t formally announced the sale on my Twitter or my TinyLetter yet, I’m assuming this performance is due entirely to ReadingDeals.

However, I’m not sure what caused my ranking to spike at #9,489 on Tuesday. That’s, like, the highest it’s been ever. (I also know, because of Pronoun, that it represents 43 sales.)

Here’s what I’m guessing happened:

  1. I wanted my $1.99 sale to run from Friday, September 22 to Friday, September 29. (ReadingDeals says the promotion will end on Sept. 26, which makes me wonder if I typed the date wrong in the form. I just sent them an email to clarify.)
  2. I emailed Pronoun about the logistics of setting up a discount. They told me that I couldn’t schedule a discount to start on a specific day; once I submit a price change through Pronoun, it usually takes 1-3 days for the retailers to update their systems.
  3. Therefore, I submitted my price change request at 10:30 p.m. Pacific Time on Monday, September 18, so it would for sure be active by Friday, September 22.
  4. The price change was active on all retailers when I woke up on Tuesday, September 19.
  5. Amazon must have notified readers about the $1.99 sale somehow, because 43 people bought the ebook that day.

Is it, like, if you put a book on your wishlist or something, Amazon lets you know when it’s discounted? Or are people tracking Amazon prices through a third-party service? I have no idea how this happened, but it’s pretty clear that pricing my book at $1.99 made a bunch of people want to buy it.

I can’t attribute it to someone mentioning me on Twitter, because as far as I can tell nobody did. I can only assume that it was because of the sale that I still haven’t publicly announced.

(Technically, I’m kind of announcing it now.)

This is my first sale, so I’m still learning how it all works. Advice is always appreciated, since I’m probably going to do another one of these someday.


In other news, the BookLife Prize announced its quarter-finalists today, and I am not on the list. I got a really lovely Critic’s Report from BookLife, including a blurb which they told me I was free to slap on all my marketing materials:

Dieker writes with unrepentant honesty about the human condition, crafting the story of the Gruber family with subtle narrative tension and the central claim that every life is worthy of a biography.

(Yeah, I know some of you have seen that blurb before because I did in fact add it to all of my marketing materials. It’s still great.)

The Critic’s Report also gave me some indirect suggestions re: how to improve Volume 2:

Dieker’s distinct voice is forthright, thoughtful, and charming. Structural flaws, including awkward shifts in perspective, are small distractions from Dieker’s eloquence and humor.

I AM WORKING ON IMPROVING THE PERSPECTIVE SHIFTS FOR VOLUME 2. It is on the list of things to revise, which I will start pummeling through once again tomorrow.

Until then, if you would like to buy my book for $1.99, now’s the best time to do it. ❤️

This Week in Self-Publishing: The Revision Process Starts Tomorrow

This Week

Books sold:  4 ebooks, 1 paperback (at Readerfest)

Money earned: $10.67

Money spent: $0

Total

Books sold: 222 ebooks, 135 paperbacks

Money earned (book sales): $1,077.31

Money earned (Patreon): $6,909

Money spent: $4,767.71


As promised, I went through Mint, figured out exactly how much I had spent on publishing and promoting The Biographies of Ordinary People thus far, and updated the “money spent” metric. I had left out a few travel expenses, as I suspected.

Still, I’m in the black! (Pre-tax, anyway. Also, I need to set up a meeting with my accountant to figure out how book sales will affect my taxes.)


I don’t have a lot to share this week; I’m still working on getting those last promos set up, and I’m going to start revising Volume 2 tomorrow. My goal for this weekend is to knock out all of the copyediting notes I left for myself in the printed copy of Vol. 2 (see above) and to create a burndown chart listing every additional revision and rewrite I have to complete, along with everything else I’ll need to get done before I publish the book next spring.

(When do I need to submit for awards? When do I need to launch the pre-order? Etc.)

It’ll be a lot of work, which is why I set aside several weekends to get the revisions done, and will no doubt set aside several more weekends in 2018 to get the prep and promo work done.

But I’ll keep you posted on my progress. ❤️

This Week in Self-Publishing: Starting the Next Round of Promos

This Week

Books sold: 7 ebooks, 0 paperbacks

Money earned: $16.56

Money spent: $16 (on a Fussy Librarian promo)

Total

Books sold: 222 ebooks, 134 paperbacks

Money earned (book sales): $1077.31

Money earned (Patreon): $6,909

Money spent: $4,290.85

I’m trying a new way of sharing metrics this week! Hope it makes things a little clearer. I know the “money spent” metric is still a little off, because I forgot to add in bus tickets to the Portland reading and Lyft rides to airports for the Missoula reading. I’m going to go into Mint and get a better “money spent” number for next Friday.


This month, my goal is to set up book promos with four sites: Fussy Librarian, BookSends, Reading Deals, and Manybooks.

Here are the requirements and costs for each:

Fussy Librarian

  • Must have at least 10 Amazon reviews with a 4-star average
  • Must be priced under $5.99 (does not have to be on sale)
  • Costs $16 for a literary fiction book

BookSends

  • Must have at least 5 Amazon reviews “with a high overall average”
  • Must have an attractive cover
  • Must be on sale for less than $3 and at least 50% off full price
  • Cannot previously have been on sale for a lower price
  • Costs $20 for a literary fiction book on sale for $0.99
  • Costs $30 for a literary fiction book on sale at $1.99 (but they don’t always accept $1.99 books and prefer lower sale prices)

Reading Deals

  • Must have at least 5 Amazon reviews with a 4-star average
  • Must have an attractive cover
  • Must be on sale for at least 33% off full price
  • Costs $29

Manybooks

  • Must have at least 10 Amazon reviews with a 4-star average
  • Must have an attractive cover
  • Must be on sale for at least 50% off full price
  • Cannot have been on sale for a lower price in the past three months
  • Costs $29

Since Fussy Librarian doesn’t require a sale price, I can schedule it to stand on its own; then I can run a week-long sale and stack the BookSends/Reading Deals/Manybooks promos one after the other.

You might be asking “what about BookBub? Isn’t it the biggest and best promo site of them all?” Here’s my answer:

BookBub

  • Must be on sale for at least 50% off full price
  • Cannot have been on sale for a lower price in the past 90 days
  • Must pass a selection process that favors books with quality reader reviews (which I have), quality industry reviews (which I have) and recognizable accolades like awards or bestseller status (which I don’t have)
  • Costs $580 for a literary fiction book on sale at $0.99
  • Costs $1,000 for a literary fiction book on sale at $1.99

So… yeah. I know that I can, in theory, get BIG REWARDS from a BookBub promo. But I don’t think I have an accolade that’ll hook ’em, and while I have both $580 and $1,000 I’m not sure I’m ready to invest it yet.

Like, way better to wait until after I get that accolade, right? Because they put all that emphasis on “books that have earned rewards or bestseller status or famous blurbs perform significantly better than books that haven’t?”

Which means my current plan is to save BookBub for next spring after I know whether I’ve won any of the awards to which I’ve applied. It might even be smart to save BookBub until after Volume 2 releases, so readers who love Volume 1 can immediately buy the second one.

I’ll still be able to do the “stacked promo” technique with the other promo sites too, since the “can’t have been on sale in the past three months” limit will have worn off by then.


On the subject of Volume 2: I’m doing Readerfest this weekend, but I’ve blocked off the following three weekends just for revisions. I know it’ll take more than just three weekends to revise and rework Volume 2, but I have a burndown chart of everything that needs to be addressed and I’m going to see how much I can get through in that time.

I can definitely knock out all the piddly stuff; the copyediting and consistency notes I made on my first revision pass-through, the fact-checking, etc. Ideally, by the end of these three weekends, the only major revisions left will be the handful of scenes that need expanding or reworking.

Which will be the hardest part.

Which is why I’ve given myself three months in which to get ’em done.

Part of me is like “you’ll totally be able to finish your revisions by the end of 2016, and even if you don’t, you’ve got January and February as overflow months before you need to do the final proof and send it off for formatting (and then do the final final proofread).”

The other part is like “BUT WHAT IF YOU DON’T AND YOU HAVE TO WRITE ONE OF THOSE POSTS EXPLAINING HOW YOUR BOOK WON’T RELEASE IN MAY 2018 AS PROMISED?”

And, really, I have no idea what will happen. I only have a good guess based on the way I’ve been able to get things done so far.

Also, I really really really really want to revise this book by the end of the year, which is the best kind of motivator. (For me. Your motivational tools may differ. I tend to work the hardest on the things I want the most, which… wow, I feel like I could write a whole post on what that means, and how I’ve constructed my life to make that kind of work possible, and the privilege/discipline/logistics/knowledge of self involved. DO YOU WANT A POST ABOUT KNOWLEDGE OF SELF because I could do that.)

Anyway, that is this week’s update, and I gotta go do the rest of my Friday work for my freelance clients now! As always: ❤️ ❤️ ❤️

This Week in Self-Publishing: The Second BargainBooksy Promo

Patreon revenue (total): $6,909

Book revenue (total): $1,060.75

Book sales (total): 215 ebooks, 134 paperbacks

Book expenses (total): $4,274.85

Money spent this week: $0

(I think it’s time to restructure these metrics again because all those parentheses are getting confusing.)


I’m going to keep this week’s update short so I can get everything I need to get done DONE before the long weekend:

My second BargainBooksy promo ran on Sunday, and it went pretty much exactly as I predicted. I sold enough books to earn back the cost of the promo—14 ebooks times $2.67 in royalties equals $37.38, and the promo cost $35—but I didn’t sell as much as I did during my first BargainBooksy promotion.

Interestingly, those 14 sales got me to #31,807 in all of Amazon, and #226 in my category:

Which, as Pronoun emailed to remind me, meant I was in the top 8%:

This was on fourteen sales, y’all.

But hey, I earned back my investment! As soon as I get back from vacation, I’m going to start submitting to the big promo sites and planning one of those stacked promo things where I’m on a new site every day for a week.

I’ve heard that’s how to get your ebook to #1 in your category.

I wonder how many sales that would take.

This Week in Self-Publishing: On Medium Claps and Climate Change

Patreon revenue (total): $6,909

Book revenue (total): $913.75

Book sales (total): 201 ebooks, 134 paperbacks

Book expenses (total): $4,274.85

Money spent this week: $35 (on this month’s BargainBooksy promo)


It’s been a month since my first BargainBooksy promo, which means I’m eligible to BargainBooksy again. The promo goes live on Sunday, so I’m predicting a spike in sales over Sunday-Monday-Tuesday, but I’m going to bet that it will be a slightly smaller spike than I got with the first promo, because… a lot of BargainBooksy’s readers will have already seen the book when it promo’d last month, and the people who bought the book aren’t likely to buy it again.

What about the people who didn’t buy the book during the first promo? There’s this theory that showing people something more than once makes them more likely to buy it—which is why we’ve all got products following us from one sidebar ad to another—but there’s also the FUCK YES or NO theory, which suggests that people who have already said no to my book aren’t likely to say yes to it.

Who knows? I am excited to see what happens.

And now that my website is all built and I’m lookin’ all profesh, I am excited to start submitting to some of the more exclusive promo sites.

That’ll be next month.


So I didn’t plan to transition This Week in Self-Publishing away from Medium right as they introduced the claps thing, but… I am so glad I don’t have to deal with the claps thing.

A quick summary: Medium decided to junk its former “recommend” metric and is now ranking all articles (past and present) based on the number of claps they receive.

Yes, an individual reader can tap the clap button more than once (but not more than fifty times).

No, not all claps are equal. Medium will rank some clappers’ claps as clappier than others’ claps based on how often they clap and how many claps they clap:

Our system will evaluate your claps on an individual basis, assessing your evaluation of a story relative to the number of claps you typically send. All this will help the stories that matter most rise to the top.

I think the clap system is crap. Especially the part where Medium is going to start distributing writers’ pay based on clap value:

For the creators in the program, each month you will be paid based on the level of engagement your stories get from Medium members. Essentially, we look at the engagement of each individual member (claps being the primary signal) and allocate their monthly subscription fee based on that engagement.

Which puts writers in the embarrassing position of having to make like Allison Williams in Peter Pan Live! 

Not that this is all that different from the way Kindle Unlimited divides up its pie. But it feels different. With KU, authors get paid by the number of pages read, which—although there are plenty of ways people have tried to game that system—is a fairly straightforward metric. You either keep reading or you don’t.

With Medium Claps, a binary metric (recommend/don’t recommend) becomes a… um… fiftynary metric.

Either you clap once or you don’t.

Either you clap twice or you don’t.

Either you clap three times or you don’t.

Etc.

You could argue that it’s the same as “either you turn page one or you don’t, either you turn page two or you don’t,” but the clapper doesn’t get anything from additional claps, the way the reader gets more information/entertainment/story/emotion from additional page turns.

Medium’s asked all of us to do more work, and make more decisions, for nothing.

Which is why I’m glad that it happened right when I started this-here blog.


On a completely different topic, I was very interested to read the Seattle Review of Books’ review of Amitav Ghosh’s Great Derangement: Climate Change and the Unthinkable.

As Jonathan Hiskes writes:

In The Great Derangement: Climate Change and the Unthinkable, Ghosh examines why contemporary fiction struggles so mightily to respond to climate change. The title phrase explains how future historians will regard writers and literary tastemakers of our current era, Ghosh says. The sort of fiction that wins prizes, appears in literary journals, and draws invitations from high-minded festivals acts as if climate warning signs don’t exist. Merely mentioning the subject risks being relegated to the lower-prestige world of science fiction, as if “climate change were somehow akin to extraterrestrials or interplanetary travel.”

If you’ve read The Biographies of Ordinary People, you know that I make plenty of subtle references to climate change. A book that anchors itself to specific years and seasons needs to allude to steadily warming temperatures and winters without snow.

But I also left some stuff out. Back to the SROB:

Ghosh became an accomplished, celebrated novelist, and he wondered why he never drew from the tornado in his fiction, which frequently incorporates significant weather events. He concluded that it was too improbable. Serious contemporary fiction, he realized, relies on a pact with readers that they can expect a “realistic” world.

My hometown was one of the towns affected by the Great Flood of 1993, a 500-year-flood that happened sooner than expected. When I wrote Biographies, I time-jumped over 1993 on purpose; writing the flood would require me to put my imagined Kirkland, Missouri in a specific part of the state and formally link it to my actual hometown, which was not one of my goals with this book. (You did read the Author’s Note, right?)

So I kept the climate change and cut the flood.

And the tornado.

I guess that means they’re still there for me to write about someday, if I want to. ❤

This Week in Self-Publishing: My To-Do List

Patreon revenue: $6,909

Book revenue: $899.96

Book sales: 196 ebooks, 134 paperbacks

Book expenses: $4,239.85

Money spent this week: $96.53 (on awards fees and shipping for the IPPYs and the Washington State Book Awards)


So I just want to run down all the stuff, really quickly, because I have a lot of work to do and the news is THE NEWS. You know.


The Missoula reading at Fact & Fiction went very well! There was music, there was reading, and then Marian Call led a short Q&A afterwards. (I’m always glad when there’s someone to MC the Q&A. It goes so much better than when I try to do it myself, because if nobody has any questions the MC can always ask one of their own, and that usually prompts an audience member to think of one.)

I don’t have Missoula sales to announce because they didn’t do a consignment agreement (where I provided the books and they sold them and we split the money). They ordered the books outright from IngramSpark, so I don’t know how many of my Ingram sales were from Missoula. I’d guess the same number that I’ve been selling at my other readings: 10–15ish.


I submitted Biographies to the IPPYs and the Washington State Book Awards this week. I opened up the Ben Franklin awards page and thought “$225? Seriously?” and then I wondered if I really needed to submit to that award.

I’m getting more hesitant to spend money on this book, now that it’s out in the world and I can see what it’s doing. I’m definitely going to spend some money on book promos like Bargain Booksy and Reading Deals and etc.—because we’ve already proven that those earn back their investments—but I’ve already submit to five awards, and maybe I can be done?

OR WOULD THIS BE THE ONE AWARD I WOULD ACTUALLY WIN AND I MISSED MY CHANCE BECAUSE I’M TOO CHEAP TO SPEND $225?

Right. Moving on.


Right now Nicole Dieker Dot Com redirects to an animated GIF of a kitten falling over, which is adorable, but it also means that I am in the process of building a new website.

I am at the very beginning of the process, and since I am doing this while simultaneously helping The Billfold with its website migration, I know just how much work this is going to take.

But I want this website so badly. I feel like it’s the next step in my professional process: gettin’ a site that has all my stuff in one place, and migrating these posts over to it, and linking to my freelance work and myHugo House classes, and telling everyone to sign up for my TinyLetter.

So I gotta build this site. And get new headshots. MY HAIR ISN’T EVEN THAT COLOR ANYMORE.


The trouble with getting new headshots is that I feel like I haven’t made a genuine smile since Trump got elected.


So my current order of operations is:

  1. Do the website
  2. Do this month’s Bargain Booksy promo
  3. Start sending out thoughtful & interesting TinyLetters that include links to this week’s This Week in Self-Publishing post as well as my best freelance stuff from the week, interesting links I’ve read, upcoming appearances, you know how TinyLetters work
  4. Submit Biographies Vol. 1 to other promo sites
  5. Appear at Readerfest in Seattle on September 9—YES, THAT IS MY NEXT PUBLIC THING, LET’S HANG
  6. Focus fully on revising Biographies Vol. 2 (I have several weekends blocked off for this)

CAN WE DO IT ALL?

PROBABLY YES. I am good at doing a lot of things.

But wow this will take a lot of work, in addition to all of my freelance work and checking in with whatever’s happened in the world since I began writing this post. ❤


I ALSO WANT TO DEEP-CLEAN MY APARTMENT BECAUSE I’VE BEEN AWAY FROM HOME FOR THE PAST TWO WEEKENDS AND EVEN THOUGH I’VE BEEN WIPING THE SINK DOWN THERE IS STILL DUST COLLECTING EVERYWHERE.

This Week in Self-Publishing: En Route to Missoula

Patreon revenue: $6,909

Book revenue: $888.20

Book sales: 193 ebooks, 133 paperbacks

Book expenses: $4,143.32

Money spent this week: $0.00 (Did I include the cost of flights/hotels to Missoula back when I bought them? I can’t remember. I should do a more thorough tally at some point, because I know I didn’t count the cost of the Bolt Bus to Portland last week. I think I forget that travel also counts as book expenses.)


I’m writing this from a tiny plane en route to Missoula, where I’ll be doing a reading tonight at 5:30 p.m. at Fact & Fiction bookstore with author Kayla Cagan and musicians Marian Call and Seth Boyer.

The plane is so old that I can’t imagine how old it actually must be; the seats are comfortable and wide and there is enough legroom for two of me if we sat in front of each other.

There’s also… I mean, I’m not sure this plane has wings? It must have wings. But I can’t see them — only these propeller tube things attached to the plane by metal bars, the kind of apparatus that I can only imagine coming apart.

But it hasn’t come apart yet, because this plane has flown for so long that it feels like being in the past. I have to keep reminding myself that this is, in fact, right now.

I sold nine books at my reading at Another Read Through last Friday, and I don’t know yet exactly how much I’ve earned from those sales, but the check should be arriving soon.

I’ve also been getting more Amazon reviews, all of which remind me that this book is doing exactly what I hoped it would do. Here’s one excerpt:

Being the oldest in the family and an ardent reader I related to Meredith in the beginning. I saw myself in Natalie when she got her first glasses. I understood Rosemary (the mother) even as I was bonding with her children. Jack the father reminded me of my father.

Nicole Dieker writes in a style that makes you feel you are a fly on the wall. I found myself reading “just one more chapter” until I reached the end. I am happy that it was not really “the end” and look forward to her next book.

(If you liked that review and you haven’t yet bought The Biographies of Ordinary People: Volume 1: 1989–2000here’s the link.)

Also, to the person who included in their review that they were glad this was a trilogy, um… it’s a duology. For now. I’m pretty sure forever. Since Volume 2 ends in 2016, I’d have to wait another 15 years before I could write another book about these characters.

I am in the process of creating a new website, in which I’ll be able to showcase my freelance writing work, my novel, and my teaching. It’ll serve as an online portfolio as well as a place for me to put these blog posts (sorry Medium, we had a good run) and any other bloggy-type stuff I want to share.

I know it’s ridiculous to think of writing even more blog posts in addition to my daily work at The Billfold and my monthly work at Lifehacker, The Write Life, The Verbs, and Reviews.com. (And revising and prepping Volume 2 for publication.)

But… like, I wrote this post for The Billfold about wanting to detach a little from social media. I used the phrase “I could be one of those people who makes the successful transition from social media renter to website homeownership,” which is… apt. I want a home base that I can call my own, where I can showcase my work and share my thoughts.

I’m also going to apply for three more awards when I get back: the IPPYs and the Ben Franklin awards, which I’ve mentioned before, along with the Washington State Book Awards, which I just learned about and which are apparently free to enter as long as I mail six copies of my book to the Seattle Public Library? I can do that.

And, of course, do another BargainBooksy promo and start applying at the other promo sites, now that I have more Amazon reviews. (Thank you.)

So that’s where I am this week. Literally in the air, as I try to put a bunch of things together and get whatever this becomes started. ❤