After a two Cosmic Thumps, I realized I couldn’t stay with my original plan when I started My Weird Indy Publishing Project: write and publish a book every 3 months. I couldn’t even write a full-length memoir (50,000 words) every three months much less write and publish! I had totally forgotten that Book 1 took 4 months to write, another 5 weeks to edit, rewrite, get book cover, etc. to publish!
WHY the cosmic thumps?
I had been dragging my heels completing Book 2 and couldn’t understand why. Then Cosmic Thump#1 got my attention with a personal incident. It forced me to face that I had forgotten WHY I am writing this series!
Cosmic Thump#2 showed up in the planning process of creating my Draft to Launch plan, including deadlines.
I didn’t sleep much. Clearly, I had to do something else.
Fortunately, SURRENDER, Book 2 in the Burnout to Bliss series, has two “stand alone stories”. Suddenly my options were clear:
- I could break my commitment to “publish a book every three months” when I began My Weird Publishing Project” OR
- I could publish SURRENDER as two Short Reads!
(If you’re following the Burnout to Bliss series, you’ve read BURNOUT — How A Desert Lizard Restored My faith, Book 1, and you already know what the other big topic is! If you’re not following yet, then consider buying Book 1! or at the very least, reading the description.)
I’d already drafted those segments in Book 2, the big book version, and only had to choose which one I wanted to do first, and then re-write it to make it viable for the stand-alone short read.
I chose the cycling story because it appears first and is the first big turn-around I experienced in my recovery from extreme burnout. I also chose it because cycling is big where I live. But the teacher in me chose it because the information in this little Short Read might be helpful to someone in a similar situation, someone who is experiencing “lost confidence, lost self-esteem”. I believe the content would be helpful to such a person whether or not they wanted to ride a bike.
And helping someone else is the big WHY for writing a memoir.
Enter: new plan. I decided in that moment that, “I will keep my commitment to My Weird Indy Publishing project and I will publish another book within 3 months! And that book will be a Short read, not a full-length book!”
CYCLING in the CITY — How I Got My Confidence Back is a story* from Book 2, SURRENDER, but told in much greater detail. It’s more of a how-to book. (*Recall that I see life as a series of stories; this one is true, not fiction.)
WHAT is a SHORT READ?
SHORT READS is a category of Kindle Books arbitrarily defined by the largest bookstore in the world according to the book’s number of pages and approximate reading time:
PAGES and TIME
- 1-11, 15 minutes
- 12-21, 30
- 22-32, 45
- 44-64, 90
- 65-100, 2 hours or more
People like SHORT READS because they know in advance how long they are. For example, if the receptionist told me I had a twenty-minute wait, I might consider buying a 15-minute short read to wolf on my Kindle.
This is probably a good time to mention that if you publish a work as a Short Read, it’s a good practice to “call it like it is” for potential readers. If you’ve written a fiction short story, then say so; if your book is actually a novella, not a novel, then say so. You can do it either in the title or the description.
For example, when Chris Fox wrote a story about what happened before his series began, he made it absolutely clear what it was in the title:
Just for fun, consider finding the SHORT READ category and browsing to see what kinds of books are there and how long they are:
Amazon.com > Kindle eBooks > Popular Features > Short Reads.
As soon as I made that decision, to publish a Short read on deadline instead of a full-length book, the Universe provided marketing information!
Alex, a Kindle marketing wizard I follow, had just done one of his excellent reports (with videos and PDFs):
It was the answer to a prayer. I knew very little about Short Reads and learned what I needed to know in one afternoon — including which categories to use in publishing!
Burnout to Bliss Series Update
This past week was a blaze. The story was written, edited by Robert Armstrong, and re-written. It got a clever cover by Nathaniel Dasco. And it’s currently being formatted for Kindle, Smashwords, and Draft2Digital by Glenn Bontrager who uses In-Design to format the book, and then creates the eBook versions for each venue.
- Editor: Robert Armstrong, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Book cover: Nathaniel Dasco, at BookCoverMall.com
- Formats: Glenn Bontrager, SarcoPress.com
CYCLING in the CITY is scheduled to be published first week in March, the “every 3-month publishing deadline.”
Book 2, SURRENDER, is in the works. I don’t know yet whether it will be a “2-hour” Short Read, or a full-length memoir (50,000 words) or something in between. At this point, it could go either way.
Till next time…
Please be kind to everyone you meet, for we all have our hidden sorrows. ~Tzaddi