My debut novel, The Radio was released just over a month ago. I thought I’d write a short piece to share my experience in this short time.
Leading up towards release, and after the many long months in final edit, excitement built and built and built. And then one day, it just happened. I got a call to say that my novel was now available on Amazon, Waterstones, WH Smith and the like. No fanfares, streamers or balloons. Just simply, “it’s out now.”
And then, the obsession began. Every few hours, check the sites, check the sales, check the website hits. Have we sold any yet? How many? When? To who?
The information from the publisher isn’t immediately forthcoming. I want know sales exactly one second after they are made. I need to know people are interested. Within days the obsession turns into all out compulsive behaviour. Email after email goes to the publisher asking for updates. Once a week, I’m told. A week? You have to be kidding.
Phone calls are made and emails sent to anyone who will listen. Lots don’t. Radio stations, newspapers, websites, writers groups, authors, libraries. People begin to take a bit of notice and invites are received for interviews or quotes. Only a few, but they do begin to drip, drip, drip in.
And then a few more, and this fills my time whilst counting down to the next weekly sales update. Articles appear in papers and on websites, radio interviews are performed. The word is beginning to spread.
Reviews begin to pop up on Amazon. Like a new parent, I jump for joy as each arrives. And, people seemingly like it.
A month ago, I knew nothing about the publishing industry whatsoever. Now, I feel I know just a little bit more – the tip of the proverbial iceberg (think Titanic not lettuce). It’s hard work and constant and at times, overwhelming. But, it’s also wonderfully satisfying and I cannot thank everyone enough who has taken the time to read my work.
I still have a fifty hour a week day job, but maybe, just maybe. One day…
Oh and three days ago, I decided to stop smoking. My timing is impeccable.