Monday, 26 September 2011

Day 323

Well, those very important decisions I made last week – I may not be sticking to them after all. After announcing that Slippery Souls will be available electronically only, I’ve received feedback from people to say this wouldn’t be ideal for them. So on that note, I’ve decided to put some time aside this week to research places such as Create Space and Lightning Source, to see what the options are for getting the book into print that way. No doubt I’ll have more on that next week! (Thank God for the Writers & Artists Yearbook really – I can see that I’ll be digging that out once again). This whole publishing process has got my head in a spin!
My new Sunray Bay Series blog is now up and running – solely dedicated to Slippery Souls and the sequels that shall follow. It’s at and so far it has my book cover design on display and a sneak preview of the first 500 words. I will be announcing my launch date there very soon too. I’ve also created a new Facebook page: Rachael H Dixon – so please check that out and ‘like’ it if you’d like to get regular updates of any writing news… (I’m not sure if Facebook is being flaky though because some people say they can’t find it when they do a search for it – or perhaps it’s because they are spelling my name wrong?…that second ‘a’ is a nightmare sometimes!)
I’ve also been working on my website design – which is very exciting! I’ll be getting my paints out a bit more, because I want it to be very illustrated and in keeping with the cover design.
My short story writing, and any other writing really, has gone on hold for now, while I sort out Slippery Souls and all of its associated marketing plans. I could really do with more hours in the day. Perhaps I need to stop going to bed – sleeping’s not that important after all J However, I did receive some exciting short story news this week. My horror story Pig Ignorant, which came second in the Spinetinglers’ May 2010 competition, has been voted to be printed in the Spinetinglers 2011 Anthology – which will be published on Halloween! It will be available for purchase on Amazon as both a hard copy book and e-book.
I think that’s about all of my news for this week, so where was I? Oh yes, ISBNs, Create Space, print to order…now where to start, hmmm.

Monday, 19 September 2011

Day 316

I feel very positive this week. I’ve made some very important decisions and I’m sticking with them! Slippery Souls will be published electronically only – and I’m looking at having a launch day sometime in mid-December. Hopefully I will look at dates this week and decide upon one, just so I have a target goal.
My front cover is coming on really well – apart from the fact that I accidentally created it as 72dpi, which is nowhere near good enough quality. So I need to go back to the drawing board and scale it up to 300dpi. Apart from that little technical hitch, I’m really loving the way it’s looking – and hopefully, all going well, I will be uploading it here next week for everyone to see.
I’ve been working on a new Facebook page too, which will be used to promote my book – but it’s not yet published. I’ll be working on that this week too, and will post the link here next week.
I also need to create my own website– though I have no idea where to begin, so lots of research is required. However this task won’t be underway until I have finalised the book cover design, because I’d like to keep everything stylised.
For now I don’t have any other writing news – everything else has gone on hold while I do some market research etc. Hopefully next week my updates will plentiful!

Monday, 12 September 2011

Day 309

My fortune card this morning said that I was going to have a ‘change of direction’ – and I think perhaps it could be right. I’ve been thinking recently about both self-publishing and e-publishing, and I’m thinking I may just go down the Kindle/e-book reader route with Slippery Souls rather than having a physical book. I need to get my business head on, after all. It won’t cost me anything to upload the book, and then all the money I make from sales will be pure profit (except, of course, for the cut Amazon takes, but hey, that’s fine). Whereas if I self-publish it’s going to cost hundreds of pounds, which is a heck of a lot of money really, and, on top of that, I’m concerned about getting the right printing company for the job, because I want it to look the absolute best it can (i.e. front cover imagery and colours to be really crisp and good quality). I’m thinking it would be best to put money towards marketing instead.
I was going to use GIMP to design my front cover – however I decided to have a trial 30 days of Adobe Photoshop Elements (which is pretty much how I remember Photoshop when I was at university doing my Graphic Design course over ten years ago)…I’ve picked it up again really quick, so I may end up just forking out for that at the end of the 30 days.
Anyway, I have a sketched thumbnail idea of what I want the cover to look like, and so far I’m really pleased with it (so long as I can create the look properly). It’s very kitsch, colourful and hand-rendered – and I’ll post it up here as soon as it’s finished.
Now onto other writing news, erm let’s see…
A short story of mine, Counting Chickens, was published on Shortbread Stories website this week. It’s a non-paying website but it’s a great place for showcasing your work. My story can be found here:
I have a new entry on my travel blog called Jumping Off at the Steep End in Niederau – which was an account of paragliding in Austria. That can be found in the usual place:
My sister-in-law is still working her way through the Slippery Souls manuscript – so no news on that front yet. I’m going to crack on with the front cover in the meantime, and I’ve also started making notes for the sequel. I’ll probably start writing the first draft of the sequel this week.
And apart from entering a few more competitions I think that’s about all the latest, so I will go and get on with things – I’m a very busy girl at the moment!

Monday, 5 September 2011

Day 302

My sister-in-law, Hannah, is going through Slippery Souls in instalments – I’ve sent her the first ten chapters. Last I heard, she was up to chapter five and she said that she was really enjoying it, phew! I only hope she enjoys the other thirty three chapters too!
I haven’t yet made any progress on the front cover, and that’s mainly because I’ve been too busy writing up some short stories – stuff I’d started ages ago and never got round to finishing (all horror). I’d love to write a horror novel, (you know, proper scary psychological stuff), but I can never think of an idea that would stand the pace for a whole book. One of these days I’m hopeful that I’ll be struck with an idea though…hopefully sooner rather than later!
I’m thinking for my new novel Monday I’d like a front cover in the style of Gil Elvgren’s work (I’m a massive fan of his pin-up girls), though I gave all of my painting equipment away – and besides, I’m not quite sure whether I could emulate his work that well really, hmmm, we’ll see. On the other hand, I was also contemplating submitting it to an unpublished novel competition like the one being ran by mslexia – though I might be taking on too much then, because I’d need the second draft ready by the end of next month. Maybe I need to put Monday on the backburner for a while – or maybe I need to grab the bull by the horns and work 24x7 for the next month to get it submitted…
Answers on a postcard please J