To Boldly Go – The Preparations for my New Science Fiction Series.

A Progress Report

I knew I would end up writing another series of books. Still, until Monday, October 5, 2020, I hadn’t allowed myself to have any ideas. I always believed that the surest way of not finishing a job is to have another shiny idea luring me away from my current project.

The Siren’s Call…

 

I am sticking firmly to the science fiction genre this time around, as the story ends in 2184. My last series was in the dystopian sub-genre of science fiction but had far too many other themes from politics, crime, and even fantasy, and it was tough to market. Having said that, at least it made a reasonable profit. I also still love those books, as the characters seemed almost a part of me because I had lived with them in my head for so long. However, I had to look at the whole project objectively to take all the learnings into the new works.

My writing environment.

Apart from narrowing the genre, I also decided not to be exclusive with Amazon and Audible. I would instead take the lower royalties to be more widely available.

 

As I worked for WHSmith for forty years and WHS had a close business relationship with Kobo, I always regretted not being on that platform. So, I removed my old books out of exclusivity and gave myself some breathing space by putting them on pre-order with stores like Kobo, Apple, Google Play, Barnes and Noble etc. They will all be available on these and many other great storefronts when the new series is released.

My wife helpfully designed me some ‘hurry up’ sheets to make sure I finished laying down the recorded chapters before the painters and decorators moved in!

All four books in the new series have been written and edited, and all the chapters have been recorded. And until recently, I have been completing audio editing and mastering.

However, I took time to brush up the back catalogue to fit the new books’ brand, this means wholly or slightly changing the old covers, and making the typography consistent.

 

Also, in the print versions, I reformatted the text using Adobe InDesign to give them a more industry standard feel. They are now also available in hardcover on Amazon. Arranging the wide versions of the print covers of the new series is on my to-do list.

The longest tasks I still have to complete are the book three and four audio edits. This won’t be a problem as book three isn’t released until September 26, 2022. They will be finished and sent to many audio platforms across the globe long before then. The only irksome audio company is Audible, as they don’t have a facility for setting up pre-orders, so these audiobooks will have to be submitted down to the wire.

I gleaned a lot from the past and tried to put these learnings into practice this time around, but most importantly for me, is that I have had an absolute blast working on this latest quartet of novels.

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