January 2016 update – Where those books at yo?

January is all but done, so I thought it best to write a quick catch-up on where all the various moving pieces are at.

Goodreads Giveaway

First up, there’s a Diary of the Wolf book giveaway going on over on Goodreads. 13 signed copies of Diary of the Wolf up for grabs. You can enter below… 🙂

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Diary of the Wolf by Frank E. Whelan

Diary of the Wolf

by Frank E. Whelan

Giveaway ends February 23, 2016.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

Diary of the Wolf promotion

The print edition of Diary of the Wolf has been roaming wild for the last few weeks. So far the reception has been quite good. Small, but good. When you don’t have major publisher marketing budgets to spread the word, you’re relying on word of mouth and reviewers taking an interest.

I was lucky to strike up a conversation with Margaret Madden over at bleachhouselibrary.ie. She was good enough to give me some great advice and asked some bloggers if they were interested in reviewing the book. See, with the flood of self-published titles, the difficulty reviewers have is finding the time to read them all. Quality control is key, as is filtering. A recommendation gets you past the first gate keepers.

I tried putting some money in to promotion, I’ll give a detailed breakdown of that at some point, but here are the cliffnotes:

  • Fiverr – Spent money on two blog posts and promotion. It was largely useless, like buying likes on social media. I feel dirty.
  • Facebook – I put some money behind ads to grow my author profile. These were relatively expensive likes, I don’t think I’d do it again, but they were genuine likes from genuine people. Good to get the ball rolling and creep towards the key 200 Facebook likes.
  • Bought an ad on writing.ie – This was well worth the money. I think I got 4 book sales out of it, but  more importantly was the exposure. I paid for 28 days, possibly too long due to repeat visitors, but I still feel this was good quality.
  • Goodreads Giveaway – OK, so these are free to get started, but you have to pay for the prizes. This instantly gave me a better presence on Goodreads. At the moment over 200 people have entered and nearly as many have added Diary of the Wolf in to their “want to read”.

Because of Createspace’s insta-publish, I had no publicity build up, but hopefully the word of mouth will build. I’m at that point where I’m proud of the book and have faith in it. People genuinely seem to  like it.

Every day I’m learning more about the game, all to be poured in to book two and the rest.

Shadows in the Dark – Book two progress

Shadows in the Dark is progressing nicely. At this point I’ve written three new chapters. I still have no idea how I considered the story fully told in the first draft as these new chapters feel so deliciously essential. Injected into the very middle of the first draft, these three chapters completely change the pacing and power of the book.

There are another three new chapters planned, two for the second half of the book and one at the very end. After that, the old text will be tightened up and then the whole draft goes out to test readers.

I’m excited, because it’s becoming a far more powerful book than I first imagined. Well, no, it was always meant to be a step up from Diary of the Wolf, but I guess my first run lacked the maturity of execution that I’m hopefully now bringing. Perhaps I’m now writing the book that I wasn’t capable of writing three years ago. Here’s hoping.



FrankJanuary 2016 update – Where those books at yo?