Weekly Update – March 7, 2017

Secret Origins coverI open this week with a reminder that the Kindle edition of Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins will be available for free next week beginning Monday, but more importantly, I’m asking fans of the series to grab a copy for a friend or family member and send it to them as a gift. And remember, if they don’t own a Kindle, they can download a free app that allows them to read the e-book on any device.

 

WRITING PROJECTS

The Adventures of Strongarm & LightfootBlades of Glory: I hit the 32,000 work mark over the weekend, so I’m creeping up on the halfway point in the story. While I’m happy with the way the story’s developed so far, I know I’m going to need to massage it a bit in the second draft to really punch up its personality. The series stands out because of its irreverent tone and that’s a bit lacking in draft one.

Action Figures – Issue Seven: The Black End War: First draft finished.

Action Figures – Issue Eight: Crawling from the Wreckage: First draft finished.

Action Figures – Issue Nine: Rough plotting in progress.

Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins: Audiobook recording in progress.

APPEARANCES and EVENTS

MISC.

I’m going to make the most of my March writing-wise, because next month my weekends go bye-bye because of the Connecticut Renaissance Faire’s Robin Hood Springtime Festival. Rehearsals begin in April and the show runs into May, so don’t be surprised if I don’t have much to say for several weeks.

That said, I’m always happy to hear from readers with questions about any of my books or about writing in general, so feel free to post a comment here on the blog.

Finally, I am working on a fun little side-project with my cover artist, Tricia, that will be of interest to Action Figures fans. More on that as it develops!

Weekly Update – February 28, 2017

Welcome to the “Happy Birthday to Me” edition of the blog.

In two days I turn 47, and this is what I’d like you — yes, you — to get me for my birthday. Don’t worry, these gifts won’t cost you anything except a few minutes of your time.

Your first option: if you’re a fan of my work and you have yet to leave a review for one (or more) of my books on Amazon or Goodreads, go do so. Reviews help entice new readers to try out books they’ve never heard of by authors they never heard of, and positive word-of-mouth is always the best publicity.

Your second option: if you’re a fan of the Action Figures series and you know someone who might enjoy the books, take advantage of the free giveaway for Secret Origins, which begins next Monday and runs all week, by buying a copy and gifting it to a friend. If they don’t own a Kindle, they can download a free app that allows them to read the e-book on any device.

af6-cover-ebook-editionNow that I’ve gotten all that out of the way: Action Figures – Issue Six: Power Play is now officially available! The product pages for the Kindle and print editions might not be merged yet — chalk that up to idiosyncrasies within Amazon’s system — so for now go here for the Kindle version and here for the print version.

Thank you to everyone who pre-ordered the book and pushed it onto a couple of Amazon Top Ten lists during its pre-sale period.

WRITING PROJECTS

The Adventures of Strongarm & LightfootBlades of Glory: Got a little more work in, and I’m taking a long weekend for my birthday this week so I’ll have a couple of extra writing days this week.

Action Figures – Issue Seven: The Black End War: First draft finished.

Action Figures – Issue Eight: Crawling from the Wreckage: First draft finished.

Action Figures – Issue Nine: Rough plotting in progress.

Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins: Audiobook recording in progress.

APPEARANCES and EVENTS

  • NEW! Saturday, April 22 and Sunday, April 23, 11 AM to 4 PM: New Bedford Book Festival. A couple of weeks ago I mentioned that I probably would not be able to do the spring New Bedford Book Festival due to a scheduling conflict, but I will have a presence there after all. My wife has graciously volunteered to represent me at the event, so she’ll be there to push paper on my behalf. I’ll miss chatting with readers, but I’ll make sure there are plenty of signed copies of my books ready for patrons to buy.
  • Saturday, September 16: The Connecticut Renaissance Faire at the Lebanon Fairgrounds, Lebanon, CT.

MISC.

This last bit is aimed primarily at fellow indie authors, so feel free to skip this.

While my CTRF book signing is several months off, I’m spending the lead-in trying to think of ways to motivate the other invitees to talk up the event, because if the last two years are any indication, they don’t do much to promote it on their own. They simply showed up, set up, and tried to sell books, but they never put any effort into drawing attention to the faire in the days and weeks leading up to it.

When my wife was vending at faires, I saw that attitude a lot from her fellow merchants. Veronica talked up the show constantly on her blog and her social media outlets, as did a few diligent others, but so many vendors put no effort into spreading the word, and it’s no coincidence that they were usually the first to gripe when they had a crappy run.

I’ve seen that doing shows as an author as well. The authors think that by paying their fee, they’ve done their part and now it’s all on the host to promote the event.

No. No no no.

Why wouldn’t you talk up a public appearance? You have skin in this game, after all. The point is to connect to potential readers and make sales, right? Well, higher attendance equals greater potential for sales, so it is directly in your best interests to do whatever you can to increase an event’s exposure and entice people to come. Post about it online. Mention it in your newsletters. Mention it to people who talk to in your day-to-day life. Don’t just assume your host is going to magically reach every prospective guest, because they won’t. Even with an aggressive, far-reaching promotional campaign, they’ll miss people — people you could capture through your own modest efforts.

The work doesn’t end when you’re finished writing.

Weekly Update – February 14, 2017

Welcome to the full o’ love edition of the weekly update — and what I love is that Boskone is this weekend! I’ll be down in the dealers’ room all three days, so come by to say hi, talk about writing, and buy signed copies of my books.

WRITING PROJECTS

Copyright 2018 Patricia Lupien
Copyright 2018 Patricia Lupien

Action Figures – Issue Six: Power Play and Action Figures – Live Free or Die: Edited, formatted, awaiting front cover art (in progress, at right).

Action Figures – Issue Seven: The Black End War: First draft finished.

Action Figures – Issue Eight: Crawling from the Wreckage: First draft finished.

Action Figures – Issue Nine: Rough plotting in progress.

The Adventures of Strongarm & LightfootBlades of Glory: Another solid weekend’s worth of work is in the bag. I’ve put down more than 19,000 words in about two weekends’ worth of work, so about a quarter of the way done already.

Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins:  Audiobook recording in progress.

APPEARANCES and EVENTS

MISC.

I’m saddened to announce that I won’t be at the spring New Bedford Book Festival in April. I had this on my calendar since the fall show was good to me and I’d heard the first spring show was really strong, but the organizers pushed this year’s spring show back from March and it now conflicts with my Robin Hood Springtime Festival rehearsal schedule. If you’re in the area you should go anyway to support local indie authors and maybe find a new favorite book.

I do have another possible event cooking for April, however. The details are still being hammered out, but when things are official, I’ll let everyone know the date, time, location, and possible big name fellow guest (tease tease).

Finally, I’m planning to do a giveaway of Secret Origins for the Kindle next month to support the release of Power Play. It’ll run on Amazon from Monday, March 13 to Friday, March 17. I’ll say a little more about this next week, but consider yourself fore-informed (forewarned doesn’t sound quite right).

Weekly Update – October 18, 2016

The New Bedford Book Festival is done, and all in all it was a good event — well-organized and well-publicized, and there was decent traffic. If anything kept people away it was the weather — not because it was bad; just the opposite. Both days were sunny and cool, so folks might have been more inclined toward outdoor activities. Nevertheless, I did well enough there I’ve already penciled in the spring show.

I also talked to a lot of cool people, including an aspiring author or two who I hope keep going on their projects so perhaps one day I’ll see them on the other side of the table at a future show.

I’d also like to give a quick shout-out to fellow writers and Cape Codders K.R. Conway (Cruel Summer, the Undertow series) and Ray Bartlett (Sensets of Tulum), who I chatted with at the show. Hope to see you guys again at a future event!

Before I move on, I’d like to remind everyone that the Young Adult Book Heist is still going on and will be throughout October. Head over to the Facebook page to learn how you could win a Kindle, free print and e-books — including copies of Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins — swag, and more, or go to the sign-up page now to enter.

WRITING PROJECTS

Action Figures – Issue Six: Power Play: In the editing process.

Action Figures – Live Free or Die: In the editing process.

Action Figures – Issue Seven: The Black End War and Action Figures – Issue Eight: Still in progress and I have a writing weekend coming up, so let’s see how much more I can get done.

Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins:  Audiobook recording in progress

APPEARANCES and EVENTS

MISC.

The NBBF got me thinking about the ups and downs of doing any kind of show at which authors sell their wares, in part because it reminded me how bad some people are at it.

I mean that as a gentle criticism, speaking as someone who is an introvert at heart. I find interacting with complete strangers extremely uncomfortable and in daily life I try to avoid it. I’ve managed to get over that psychological hump well enough that I can function at shows, but there other elements that go into succeeding at book festivals, conventions, etc., beyond being personable and having a solid elevator pitch.

For any fellow authors who do or are thinking of doing shows, here’s a quick hit list of tips for making the most of them.

  1. Show up. I’m always amazed at how often someone never shows up or, more often, does the first day of a two-day event and, if it’s a bad sales day, never comes back. I understand that it’s frustrating to stand there for hours and never move a single book — I’ve been there — but you can’t make sales if you’re not there.
  2. On a similar note: stay the whole day. I see people packing up and leaving with a half-hour or an hour (or more) even when it’s a good sales day. As long as customers are there, the potential for sales is there. You can’t make sales if you’re not there.
  3. Stay at your table as much as possible. It’s always good to see what else is out there and chat up other authors (networking!), but if you’re constantly leaving your table to do something other than represent your work, you’re not there when someone wants to buy something.
  4. Look like you’re happy to be there, even if you’re not. No matter how bored or frustrated you are, suck it up and put on your game face. If you look like you don’t want to be approached, no one will approach you.
  5. Conversely, temper your enthusiasm. I was at a show this year and got stuck next to an author who would literally shout at passing attendees, “YOU! You like books! I have books! Come look at my books! Take one home with you!” It drove away more people than it brought in — and often before they even got near my table. Try and engaging people as a basic human being before you start trying to separate them from their cash.
  6. Don’t get distracted by your phone. When you’re sitting there mucking about on your phone, you look like you don’t want to be bothered (see Rule #3).

scotchyI could go on (and on and on), but as I write this it’s Sunday night, I’m tired, and there’s a bottle of Macallan calling out to me. Hold on, single malt bliss, I’ll be right there!

Weekly Update – October 11, 2016

nbbf-promo-imageThe final countdown to the New Bedford Book Festival has begun! I’ll be there both days and I’ll have copies of all of my books available for sale, so stop on by, say hello, and check out what other local indie authors have available.

Also, remember that the Young Adult Book Heist is in full swing through October. Head over to the Facebook page to learn how you could win a Kindle, free print and e-books — including copies of Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins — swag, and more, or go to the sign-up page now to enter.

WRITING PROJECTS

Action Figures – Issue Six: Power Play: In the editing process.

Action Figures – Live Free or Die: In the editing process.

Action Figures – Issue Seven: The Black End War and Action Figures – Issue Eight: I got a lot done on books seven and eight during my week off from the Storied Threads studio.

Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins:  Audiobook recording in progress

APPEARANCES and EVENTS

MISC.

 

 

Weekly Update – October 4, 2016

First, a big thank-you to the producers of the Connecticut Renaissance Faire for hosting me as part of its annual Meet the Authors Series this past Sunday. I moved quite a few copies, but no so much I’m scrambling to reload for my next event in a couple of weeks.

Remember that CTRF runs for four more weekends, each day of which features a new author. My friend J.M. Aucoin will be there on Monday, October 10 so make sure to say hello to him and grab one of his swashbuckling adventures.

I’d also like to remind everyone that my interview with The Authors Show is on the air today. It’ll run for 24 hours and then be re-broadcast over the weekend.

book-giveawayI’ll also mention that today marks the beginning of the Young Adult Book Heist that I’m participating in. Head over to the Facebook page to learn how you could win a Kindle, free print and e-books — including copies of Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins — swag, and more, or go to the sign-up page now to enter.

WRITING PROJECTS

Action Figures – Issue Six: Power Play: Pre-editing revisions are done and I’ve scheduled the manuscript with my editor, Julie, who plans to have it all finished up by the end of the year.

Action Figures – Live Free or Die: Pre-editing revisions are done, in the queue for editing. Same goes for this short, which will run as a back-up/bonus story in Power Play.

Action Figures – Issue Seven: The Black End War and Action Figures – Issue Eight: I’m taking a week off from the studio, so I have in total eight glorious days of writing! I expect to get a lot done.

Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins:  Audiobook recording in progress

APPEARANCES and EVENTS

MISC.

powered-by-indie

Throughout the month, Amazon is shining the spotlight on independent authors through its Powered by Indie campaign. Go poke around and perhaps you’ll find a new favorite author.

Weekly Update – September 27, 2016

Copyright 2016 Patricia Lupien
Copyright 2016 Patricia Lupien

Lots going on this week, but I’ll start with the big news: the Kindle edition of The Adventures of Strongarm & Lightfoot: Assassins Brawlis now available on Amazon! You can grab it for $3.99 or, if you prefer print, for $13.99.

If you’re interested in grabbing a signed copy and you’ll be in the Connecticut area this weekend, you’re in luck. Scroll down to the Events section for details. And if you can’t make it? Well, you’ll be able to catch me at a couple other events in the coming months, and I will at some point in the near future set up a page here for your direct purchasing pleasure.

And I’ll mention this here so it won’t get buried, but I’m participating in a special giveaway event featuring several other indie authors, which kicks in on October 2. Head over to the Young Adult Book Heist Facebook page to learn how you can win a Kindle, free print and e-books — including copies of Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins — swag, and more.

WRITING PROJECTS

Action Figures – Issue Six: Power Play: Pre-editing revisions are done, in the queue for editing. I’m waiting to hear back from my editor Julie about her availability, but my hope is to send it over to her sooner rather than later so she has plenty of time to do her work and I can still have Power Play ready for a late February/March release.

Action Figures – Live Free or Die: Pre-editing revisions are done, in the queue for editing. Same goes for this short, which will run as a back-up/bonus story in Power Play.

Action Figures – Issue Seven: The Black End War and Action Figures – Issue Eight: Got a little more work done, and I expect to make a lot of headway on it in a couple of weeks. I’ll be taking a vacation week from my wife’s studio to focus on my stuff, so I should be able to put a good dent in both projects.

Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins:  Audiobook recording in progress

APPEARANCES and EVENTS

ct-renaissance-faire-header2

MISC.

The giveaway for The Adventures of Strongarm & Lightfoot – Scratching a Lich, despite its delayed start, was a solid success. Hopefully that will turn into many, many sales of my other books — which stands to reason, based on how well my first major giveaway went (Secret Origins, as a lead-in to the release of Action Figures – Issue Two: Black Magic Women).

I was recently added to an impressive roster of YA authors on the Young Adult Authors Rendezvous website, so thank you to Patrick Hodges for that.

On Friday I recorded a segment for The Authors Show, and that interview is tentatively scheduled to run on October 4. It’ll run for 24 hours and you can listen to it for free during that time. It was a fun interview and Linda Thompson was a great host, so thank you Linda and TAS for having me on!

On a final high note, Secret Origins made its way back into the #1 position on Amazon, which was a pleasant surprise.

number-one-sept