A funny thing happened on Monday, July 15th.
I had just received my finished book cover and realized that for my book to be available in time for my blog tour that starts August 16th, I was going to have to get it into the distribution system well before that date. I also figured Murphy’s Law was still in force, so I expected surprise problems when I started uploading on Smashwords. (If I have a mantra, it would be, “it’s always something….”)
I uploaded, and sure enough, there was something wonky in the formatting, despite all my precautions to make sure there wasn’t—the known formatting issues stopped with Word 2007, and I’ve got Word 2010, though I saved the files as Word 97-2003 docs. So, I got rid of some surprise XML and hidden text, and tried again. The only change in the error message was the line numbers where the problems were—somewhere in the front matter and Table of Contents, which looked fine in EPUB. I fussed for a couple hours (it was already past my bedtime when I started) and called it a night, then discovered that while I was fussing and re-uploading, I’d had two of my sample pages downloaded!
That was a shock—but not a bad one!
I’d hoped to have the EPUBCHECK problem worked out before anyone discovered my book was out there. Except for this blog and my web site, and the FB author page and Twitter posts that go out whenever I make a post here, no one really knows about my book, so I figure the wonderful cover Kirsi made, and my blurb, were doing their job in those few hours when my book was at the top of the home page of Smashwords.
Long story short, I’d made my first sale on Smashwords in twelve hours, and three more in the next twenty-four hours! Not one for the record books, I’m sure, but I still take it as an encouraging sign.
Since then, I’ve uploaded Legend of the Spider-Prince #1: REBEL on Amazon as an ebook, and in the first twenty-four hours there, I also made four sales!
The score now sits at five sales on Smashwords and four sales on Amazon, with nineteen additional samples downloaded on Smashwords!
As for the mystery error, I rooted it out today, so my ebook is now set to go out to Apple, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, etc. I also finished my paperback edition’s layout and ordered my proof, so it also should be ready to go when the blog tour kicks off in August. I also posted Chapter 4 on my web site.
After so many years of writing in total obscurity, it has been an amazing week, the more so for this all being completely unexpected. So, a HUGE THANK-YOU to those brave souls who took a chance on a completely unknown author—I hope my book delivered on its promise, and left you entertained and wanting more.