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ChelSierra Remly - Multiple Genres & Age Groups


Hi. I'm Joxcenia/ChelSierra Remly. I write for different age groups and genres. I have written a number of picture books, but I decided to move on to my other works, as I'm not an artist. I'd self-publish them if I were. I have several flash fictions and short stories in the works. I am thinking of self-publishing those at some point.

I have 3 humorous books I would love to self-publish in the near future. I've bought some books on how to do that, and am learning how to format them. And I'm hoping to learn Gimp soon in order to create the covers/jackets. Those books would most likely benefit from artwork too, but I thought I'd just start with artless eBooks to see how well they were received, then maybe see if I could find an artist partner.

I'm also reading several books on the craft of writing, and I'm creating templates from the information I learn to print out and keep in a notebook. In "My Writer Workbook" will be various sections to get me started. Premise, Story Structure, Characters, Plot, Scene Construction, etc. This way I don't have to try to remember which book helped me figure out my WIP. I'll have all the information from all of the books I have in one place for every WIP.

I'm not yet published. I'm hoping to have at least the three humorous works, plus two more humorous works, five flash fiction projects, and up to three or more short stories out before this year is over. Or sometime next year, anyways.

I signed up for Holly Lisle's Free 3-Week Flash Fiction Course. On the forums she stated that if she had it all to do again, she would start out with short works, indie-publish them, then put out a little bit longer works, and indie-publish them, and so on. And while they were bringing in some money, she'd then put her energy into writing novels. So, from her comment, I made up my mind to add two more humorous works to the three I have now, to make five eBooks to put out. Then write enough flash fiction stories for five more eBooks to put out. Have ten works for sale right off the bat. Add some of my short stories I have to the bunch, and maybe have 15 or more works ready to put out.

Gotta figure out a website, eStore, Gimp for the covers/jackets, & formatting for the eBooks & PODs. That's a lot to wrap my brain around while also trying to create all the projects needed to have ready to put out in the eStore.

Lesa suggested I come here and get to know everyone and see if you can help me get my head on straight. emoticon

--Log in or sign up to see linked image content-- It's nice to be here.




Last edited by Joxcenia, 6/15/2013, 1:06 am


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Whoosh-ChelSierra-Muse - Twi-Saga
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Re: ChelSierra Remly - Multiple Genres & Age Groups


Hi Jox, welcome on board! emoticon

Wow, you are busy writing. And I'm just one step ahead of you in the self-publishing journey, although I use a company to help me format my ebooks, and create the graphics that go with them.

Have you checked out David Gaugham (Let's Get Digital) on self-publishing? I learned a lot from him. For me, the marketing is the biggest hurdle, actually making my ebooks visible out there among the masses.

I believe a blog, FB and building a following is essential to have success as a self-publisher. That's where the marketing comes in.

Oh, and Judith Tarr is also on a very interesting journey, both with ebook marketing and building different income streams. Very enlighting.

I'm glad you came over! emoticon emoticon emoticon

PS: For a website, I'd suggest Wordpress. It's a great content management system, but should be hosted on your own website. For simply starting up sales, [sign in to see URL] is great - royalties are better than with Amazon, but little beats the distribution clout that Amazon has. emoticon

Last edited by Firlefanz, 6/14/2013, 7:24 am


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Re: ChelSierra Remly - Multiple Genres & Age Groups


Welcome to the board. emoticon

And it sounds like you've got quite a bit planned, pretty ambitious. Do try to avoid getting burned out though, make sure you have some free time now and then for other things as well.
6/14/2013, 8:55 pm Link to this post Email QS2   PM QS2
 
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Re: ChelSierra Remly - Multiple Genres & Age Groups


quote:


Firlefanz
wrote:

Hi Jox, welcome on board! emoticon



Thank you. I've lurked off and on for several years, but never got down to posting here.

quote:


Wow, you are busy writing. And I'm just one step ahead of you in the self-publishing journey, although I use a company to help me format my ebooks, and create the graphics that go with them.



The three humorous works were written years ago. I've been revising them, sticking them in a drawer, digging them out, revising them, etc. I think they're very close to being ready to indie-publish. The three flash fiction works are also old works that are just now very close to being ready to indie-publish. Per Holly's suggestion of having at least 10 works ready for publication, I'll be working on more works to add to these. I'm hoping to have 10 to 15 works ready by the end of next year, if not sooner. I have up to five short stories in various states of revision. They were written years ago as well. So, it just sounds like I've been very busy. Though, if I do as Holly suggests, I will hopefully be very busy soon. I'm plotting a novel at the moment too. It is still in the thinking stage. Once the thinking stage is over, I hope to be able to work that project in with the others.

quote:


Have you checked out David Gaugham (Let's Get Digital) on self-publishing? I learned a lot from him. For me, the marketing is the biggest hurdle, actually making my ebooks visible out there among the masses.



No. Never came across it before. I have the following books I've been reading off and on:

Book Formatting for Self Publishers by Jennette Green
The Indie Author Guide by April L. Hamilton
Perfect Pages by Aaron Shepard
POD For Profit by Aaron Shepard
The Complete Guide to Self-Publishing by Marilyn Ross & Sue Collier
Self-Publishing Manual: How to Write, Print and Sell Your Own Book by Dan Poynter
Self-Publishing Manual Vol. 2: How to Write, Print and Sell Your Own Book by Dan Poynter

quote:


I believe a blog, FB and building a following is essential to have success as a self-publisher. That's where the marketing comes in.



I don't have Facebook, but I am on Twitter, MySpace & LiveJournal.

quote:


Oh, and Judith Tarr is also on a very interesting journey, both with ebook marketing and building different income streams. Very enlighting.



I'll have to Google her.

quote:


I'm glad you came over! emoticon emoticon emoticon



Thank you. I's nice to be here.

quote:


PS: For a website, I'd suggest Wordpress. It's a great content management system, but should be hosted on your own website. For simply starting up sales, [sign in to see URL] is great - royalties are better than with Amazon, but little beats the distribution clout that Amazon has. emoticon



Holly suggested WordPress too, and Tips & Tricks eStore. When readers buy from your own eStore, you get all of the profits. She also suggested Scrivener.

That's a lot of money going out. I hope that the end result will bring in far more money than I paid out, but it's still hard to take stock in that. emoticon




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Re: ChelSierra Remly - Multiple Genres & Age Groups


quote:


QS2
wrote:

Welcome to the board. emoticon

And it sounds like you've got quite a bit planned, pretty ambitious. Do try to avoid getting burned out though, make sure you have some free time now and then for other things as well.



Thank you for the welcome. I'm very good at procrastinating, so I don't think there will be a problem with me burning myself out. emoticon







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Re: ChelSierra Remly - Multiple Genres & Age Groups


Welcome aboard, Joxcenia! Best of luck with your writing and publishing!

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Thank you, ReneeS.







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Re: ChelSierra Remly - Multiple Genres & Age Groups


Jox, I know where you are with your short stories. The ones I'm self-publishing right now are years old. Same with my novels. I practically stopped writing while building my coaching business.

I'm right now in the process of publishing my second short story through Amazon and CreateSpace. It's an amazingly painless process mostly because I hire a company to do the formatting and the graphics, Blue Harvest Creative. They actively help to market my ebooks, which is amazing.

The biggest challenge is efficient marketing. I'm learning how to market right now, and I have a coach who is teaching me how to build a business. I intend to use my knowledge for my writing career, as well, but that doesn't have the highest priority right now. I've completely neglected my Hannah blog, for example ...

Even so, I do believe that self-publishing is the best way to go, after years of advising against it. And I do have a historical thriller published conventionally with small press. (It's not selling very well ...) They are having it converted to an ebook, but for some reason will not cooperate with Amazon. *shrugs* I've basically written off that novel. The only good that comes from it is that I can call myself a traditionally published author.

So I wish you best of luck for your journey. I believe it can be a very rewarding one.

 emoticon emoticon emoticon

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Re: ChelSierra Remly - Multiple Genres & Age Groups


Thanks. I wish you luck on your journey as well. I think that's why Holly Lisle started her free 3-week Flash Fiction course, and why she says to have 10 ebooks out in the first year, for 99 cents each. (The 10 being very short works of 2,500 words to 5,000 words.) The 99 cent price tag will bring in more readers, and if they like the one 'cheap' ebook, they'll snatch up the rest as well.

Then add larger and larger works for more money, and soon you could be earning enough to help out with bills and the like while you work on novels. *shrugs* So, that is my plan, at the moment. Although, I will need to learn formatting and book cover design. I'm not sure I can afford to pay out for those things after paying out for a website, estore, and other cools items that protect the PDF versions of the ebooks.

And I tend to be my own worst enemy, so I've no doubt I'll find a way to screw it all up at some point. Hopefully, I'll have 10 or more ebooks, and the website, etc. done by the end of next year. But, I won't hold my breath, as I've been talking about putting something out for the past 5 years or more, and I haven't gotten around to it yet.

Here's hoping I do what I say I'm going to do, and stop putting it off until next year, then next year, then next year, etc. At some point I'm either going to have to do it, or I'm going to have to face the fact I'm never going to do it.





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Have you heard of planning it backwards?

Set yourself a date when you want your first ebook out. Then plan backwards. What's the last step before you can put it up on Amazon? What's the second last step?

Eventually, you'll end up with a list of doable steps, and you can schedule them by week or day. And it will feel a lot less like a mountain because each step isn't that bad on its own.

For a website, I would have recommended wordpress - on your own server, so yes, you'll have hosting cost. With wordpress, however, you are getting lots of simple to use templates, which is just find for starting up. No need to pay a webguy, especially if you're good with graphics.

I paid 200 USD for my second ebook. That includes formatting for a print version, and all graphics (plus promotion they do). Yes, I'll have to sell a lot of ebooks to make that money back, but it saved me hours and hours of headache. So I see that as investment.

My plan is to have three ebooks up this year, all of them short stories - but long enough for a PoD. Mabe more as just ebooks, if they are too short for PoD. Next year, a collection of five stories that sells at a higher price. Those are the steps I'm visualizing - the work of translating my novels into English seems too much right now. I might try to put them out in German first.

Hope that helps a little. I really think that Holly Lisle has a good plan for getting started. In the long run, however, marketing will be necessary, as well.

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Re: ChelSierra Remly - Multiple Genres & Age Groups


I was thinking, the website and estore could come next to last. I need the fiction done first. Learn the ebook/POD formatting, learn Gimp & book cover design, etc. Then once the website & estore are ready to go, put out the works for sale. *shrugs*

On my own server? Do I buy a server? Or rent the use of one? I do know I'll need to pay a yearly fee for a domain name/s. But the server part isn't all that clear to me.

BTW: Why do you only sell your ebooks on Amazon? Why not on Nook, Smashwords, and other similar sites as well? Just curious.

Have you thought of selling your works as audio-books? There are sites where you can upload them and sell them. [sign in to see URL] is one. iTunes is another. CafePress. I have plans on doing that at some point as well. I bought a digital recorder and a headset with a mouthpiece.

I'm even thinking of putting really short works on coffee mugs, journals, T-shirts too. My 500 word Flash might be a perfect fit for a 10x10 template.

Okay. Gotta run, thunder is moving in and I need to get offline.

Laters.





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quote:

Joxcenia wrote:

Learn the ebook/POD formatting, learn Gimp & book cover design, etc. Then once the website & estore are ready to go, put out the works for sale. *shrugs*



I really felt intimidated by learning all that. I think I could probably handle the formatting, but I haven't found a graphics progam yet that I could use fairly intuitively. It's definitely not my genius zone. And in fact, you can get cover pictures for $5 at [sign in to see URL]. I pay a lot more for Blue Harvest Creative and their support, but it's worth it for me. Much less hassle, and a really pro look. I do believe that a cover sells the book, so it needs to look really good and stand out.

quote:

On my own server? Do I buy a server? Or rent the use of one? I do know I'll need to pay a yearly fee for a domain name/s. But the server part isn't all that clear to me.



Yes, you pay a fee for the domain. But in addition you need a host for the website - basically you rent server space. That's where the data for your website are kept. Hosting also costs a fee, usually per month, most providers offer a yearly lump payment. (Oh, and don't use GoDaddy. I'm there with one of my domains, and will move away from them.)

quote:

BTW: Why do you only sell your ebooks on Amazon? Why not on Nook, Smashwords, and other similar sites as well? Just curious.



Well, that's coming. I had "Sequoia" in the KDP Select program which has a couple of interesting features, but which also demands exclusive sale through Amazon. It's out of that program now, and I'm going to set it up for Nook. Smashwords is tricky. Formatting for them is really ugly, so I'm probably going to stick with CreateSpace for the print version. I'm also going to sell through [sign in to see URL], which offer great royalty percentages.

quote:

Have you thought of selling your works as audio-books? There are sites where you can upload them and sell them. [sign in to see URL] is one. iTunes is another. CafePress. I have plans on doing that at some point as well. I bought a digital recorder and a headset with a mouthpiece.



I'm not fond of audiobooks, but I do know others are. I do own a video camera, and I'm thinking of reading "Sequoia" to the cam and put the video up on YouTube, leading people to where they can buy the story. Not sure if that's a viable idea, but it may help to upsell my other stuff.

quote:

I'm even thinking of putting really short works on coffee mugs, journals, T-shirts too. My 500 word Flash might be a perfect fit for a 10x10 template.



I never thought of that! I have tons of 200 and 500 word flash tales because of the Flash Challenges I ran here on the board. I might offer those in a little collection. Some could probably be expanded into full short stories.

Thanks for all your questions! You're making me want to write again, and that's wonderful.

  emoticon

 emoticon emoticon

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Re: ChelSierra Remly - Multiple Genres & Age Groups


quote:


Firlefanz
wrote:

Yes, you pay a fee for the domain. But in addition you need a host for the website - basically you rent server space. That's where the data for your website are kept. Hosting also costs a fee, usually per month, most providers offer a yearly lump payment. (Oh, and don't use GoDaddy. I'm there with one of my domains, and will move away from them.)



Okay. A host, not a server. I thought that's what you had meant, but I know of an author who does own her own server, so I wasn't sure if you meant I should go that route too. I'm betting that servers are more expensive then just leasing space from a host.

I figure that's pretty much what forum creators do, but they have the income to pay for their servers. Or, maybe they just lease them too? Okay, I'm confusing myself even more. emoticon

quote:


Thanks for all your questions! You're making me want to write again, and that's wonderful.



You're very welcome. Glad to get you motivated.

I'm guessing 50 or 100 word stories will fit on a coffee mug. Not sure. I'll need to open up the template to see how much wordage will fit in the small space. Plus, I'll want the font large enough to read. Or, hey, make it teeny-tiny just to wake the drinker up. emoticon

In the Free Flash Fiction course Holly is teaching, she has you write 5 stories that will fit into one anthology ebook. So, you could put several of your short works into one ebook. I believe that 2,500 words is the least you can have for an ebook on Amazon.

I just need two more to go with the three I'm finishing up now. And I have quite a number of short stories collecting dust that I could finish up to add to the ebook collection. Most of them are well over the 2,500 word count.





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I seem to be best with stories around 7k words. For some reason that's a size where I can develop characters and tale so they work well.

However, most magazines now only accept stories up to 5k. That's why I've given up submitting, to a large degree. Also my best stories just don't fit the usual categories.

Like you, I'm thinking of a small anthology or collection, with a fitting theme. I have a number of clear fantasy stories that would go well together, but also a bunch of widely different ones. Not sure what to do with those ... write more that go with them, I suppose.

So good luck with filling your anthology, and self-publishing it!

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Thanks. I need all the good luck I can get. emoticon

I thought that once I had enough ebooks of flash fiction and short stories, I'd combine them into a POD book. *shrugs*






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