Wednesday, July 27, 2011

ROW80: Settling Back In

Yesterday marked my pronunciation of my first novel being "officially released."  It took us about two weeks to get every format in our marketing plan up and good to go.  Print took the longest, but is totally worth it.  Love print books, even though ebooks are oh-so-convenient.  One of the odd things about being your own publisher is that, well, who says when something is "official."  Me, obviously, but it still strikes me as odd.  Self-publishing is settling in for a marathon, not expecting to compete in a quick sprint.  There's not a lot of fanfare out of the gate.  Sure, family and friends are excited.  Same with the readers you picked up along the way.  But no one is taking me out for lavish dinners and clapping me on the back... except for me of course.  And my lovely wife.  (We did treat ourselves to a nice celebratory dinner at Ruth's Chris.  Yum.  Can we write that off, though?).

This week sort of represents the calm before the storm for me.  We've turned more of our attentions away from the launched book, letting it go out into the wild.  We have great reports from readers who are "staying up all night," which is one of my favorite things to hear.  But, realistically, it's going to take some time before people begin finishing and reviewing in earnest.  In the mean time, we turn our attentions to other projects.

Next week, football starts with two-a-days.  As a coach, this means my time gets gobbled up.  I subsist on seam routes and cafeteria food prepared by parents for two weeks.  I'm not a teacher, so I'll still be working the day job too.  When to write?  Well, I'm done at 9.  9-10 looks to be writing time.  Thank the electric gods for DVR.  I can keep up with my favorite shows another time.

Here's a quick look at the goals.  Again, this represents a full week for me as I was busy Sunday:
  • Publishing lesson learned: CreateSpace printers don't posses the fine color gradient that a PDF displays.  Thus, make sure your covers contrast a little extra or they may just not show up.  What you see is not exactly what you get when it comes to a print cover.
  • WIP Pages: 5.  I'm one short, but one day was spent editing a finished chapter.  I do a lot of editing as I go so that when I finish a first draft, I'm really looking at a third draft in terms of quality.  Also, I write sequentially, which allows me to send the story out chapter by chapter to a very small number of Alpha readers.  Their feedback is great and keeps me honest.  It is something I didn't start out doing (like most writers, I wanted to "hide it until it's done"), but I've settled into this process and it really works for me in a variety of ways. 
  • Posts: This will be 3 here.  Had 5 on the other blog.  A fiction post on each.  And I knocked out my monthly personal entry.  I've been knocking the posting out of the park, and this week is no different.  I don't want to increase my goal, because I think 3 per week is a good minimum, but it has proven an easy one for me to achieve.  Still, having some low-hanging fruit isn't always a bad thing. 
Right on track.  These seem to be good goals for me.  I'm also going to resist the tendency to "overwork" this week.  Even though I know I'm going to be busy next week, I feel like if I try to "double up" to gift myself a free week, it never ends well.  It's far better to simply stick on pace and leave yourself wanting to do more, lest you burn yourself out.  There's something to be said for creating habits, and habits are formed by being regular... not spiky in terms of output.  You can't always help it, but the urge to "save up" good time isn't always a good one.  At least that's what I've found.  It's something to be used sparingly.

Instead, I'm rewarding myself by spending the last few weeks of summer outside.  Playing sports.  Doing a little working out.  It's still hot as Hades, but the humidity has dropped a bit, so it's not completely intolerable.  Next week I'll have to stay focused, but this week I could still hit my goals with a little less intensity.  Sometimes that's better than always "pushing it."

Hope this week finds you well, fellow ROWers.  Flex those fingers and keep ROWin!

Word Counts:
  • Since last check-in: 6860
  • Fiction: 1778
  • 26% New Fiction
  • Grand Total for the challenge: 21073


Nadja Notariani said...

Ahhh, brings back fond memories of sitting at the football field watching oldest son (now 15) play and youngest daughter (now 19) cheer.
But we gave up football three years ago - our son goes about 5'8" and is just hitting the 130lb mark this year. Football, no matter the 'great cuts' he made, was not going to remain a sport he could compete in during high school. He's too small.
Fortunately, he also wrestled. This is a great sport for smaller kids, as there are weight brackets for everyone. It was his decision, and turned out to be a great one. He went on to become a PA D-II champion that year, and wrestled varsity last year.!!
Anyway...from one sporting parent to another....enjoy it! You certainly have to love it to coach it, I know how demanding coaching a sport is - I see the time and effort my son's coaches put in. But what you give back to the kids is priceless. take care, ~ Nadja

p.s. I re-posted your explanation. Thanks again.

Matt said...

Size does tend to be a key component of football. Then again, in HS I road the bench my first year as a small freshmen... then grew 6 inches and gained about 50 pounds over the summer. Next year I was starting JV Quarterback. Go figure.

Wrestling is good stuff. I know a lot of kids that get a lot out of it. I was always a basketball player though :-).

I love coaching. It's something I wish I had more time to do. I'll take what I can get though, and definitely see it as an opportunity for me to "give back."

No problem about the explanation, glad it was helpful. Feel free to hit me with any future questions that come up!

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