Bye For Now

The schedule for my new cozy mystery, and the one that follows, has been pulled forward. Instead of one by February 2021, I’m doing two by March 2021. That’s a ‘challenging schedule’ as the management used to say in the projects field. Normal people said it was ‘crazy’ and as it was the normal people who were doing the work, they were usually right. This is just a long way of saying, I’m placing this blog on hold for at least three months while I attempt to meet the ‘challenge’.

I have to do this because the new book has been so successful and I don’t want to lose all the 10k+ readers by leaving it too long for a follow-up. It’s like having a hit single, you have to catch the market while it’s hot. So, until April 2021, I wish you a pleasant winter (if you’re in the Northern Hemisphere, or a pleasant summer, if you’re in the Southern Hemisphere) and Happy Holidays whatever you celebrate.

Here’s the link to my new book for anyone interested in a historical cozy mystery — In The Beginning, There Was a Murder. And here’s the cover:

In The Beginning, There Was a Murder

Back On-Topic

After the past weeks of launching my new book onto the waiting world, I’m now returning to planning the second series of The Modest Proposal Institute.

As you will know, if you’ve been following my posts, I’ve been considering using a Variable Probability Drive (VPD) to transport the heroes during their adventures. However, one of the difficulties I see of a VPD is that setting the probability only slightly off one hundred per cent would take the ship’s crew to a point where they already exist, though they may be wearing something different or have different jobs. After all, if there are an infinite number of parallel universes then somewhere close to me as I type this is another me who is watching TV or fixing the car. ‘He’ is 99.99999% me but not ‘me’. And nor are the circumstances he’s living in. Today in the 100% world it is dark, overcast and dry. In the 99.99999% world, it may be sunny, with blue skies and showers.

As well, while ‘he’ is almost the same as ‘me’ in many ways, the ways in which he is different may have affected him profoundly. Our outlook on life and our health may be different, for example. If I was able to move into this almost but not quite 100% world, or vice versa, would we become one? Could two of us exist in the same universe or could a probability traveler exist in a bubble created by the travel machine and, if so, how? If you have thoughts on any of this, please do comment and tell me your thoughts.

Meanwhile, there’s always The Modest Proposal Institute boxset to keep you amused until I’ve written series two.

Check out all four books here

Still Off-Topic

Last week, I wrote of all the trials and tribulations I’d suffered while loading my new cozy mystery story, In The Beginning, There Was a Murder, onto Amazon and how that was preventing me developing the theme of my next The Modest Proposal Institute series. Sadly, things haven’t improved this week. While the new book is doing well, it seems to be more trouble than any of my previous books. All this is a long way of saying, this post is about my new book as well. Normal service will be resumed as soon as possible — I promise.

This week has been long hours filled creating Amazon ads, developing launch campaign emails (makes me sound like a candidate for political office), booking promotional spots, and generally marketing my new book. I’ve done these things in the past but this time, I think I know what I’m doing and it has taken a lot more time. Perhaps that’s what I was doing wrong in the previous times I did these things:-)

I have a logo now for my Miss Riddell Cozy Mystery series, which brings me to the next major step in my author career — learning about branding. I hope any of you who are considering a career as an author are taking notes. You have to be part writer (the easy bit as I have discovered), part advertising executive (Mad Men here I come), and part Marketeer. I’ve learned that I only really like the ‘writing a rough draft’ part of the ‘writer’ part. Oh well, until next week, here’s the logo the Marketeer part of me has developed:

Miss Riddell Cozy Mystery Series Logo

Switched Focus

This week, I’ve been entirely focused on my new cozy mystery novel, In The Beginning, There Was a Murder. Chances are, if you’re reading this, cozy mysteries aren’t your ‘thing’ so I’m warning you right up front this post is not about The Modest Proposal Institute series one or two. I’m too shell-shocked to even think about anything but the new book. Here’s why.

First the new book has to be formatted before it can be uploaded to Amazon. I’ve had others do this in the past but I bought formatting software to do it myself and the new book has been my learning experience. Now I’ve finished the formatting, I can say with an almost straight face it was easy. Loading up the ebook file to Amazon went well. The paperback file didn’t go at all. Some time, and some hair, was lost fixing that.

I set up a Facebook page for the cozy mystery series, The Miss Riddell Cozy Mysteries, if you’re interested. That went well, by comparison with other. I write this blog on WordPress so I felt confident I could quickly set up a Miss Riddell Cozy Mystery WordPress site. It turns out, I couldn’t. My brilliant plan was to write a Miss Riddell blog post from the new site today — maybe it will be next week, or next year. Either WordPress changed or I did but one of us no longer matches the other.

The frustrations above, however, are but shadows compared to MailerLite. This is quite possibly the most unintuitive software ever created, at least to me. With lots of help from fellow authors and MailerLite users, I now am able to set up my author ‘campaigns’ (fancy MailerLite name for emails), landing pages (fancy term for webpage), and automate the mailing sequences for both. It’s possible I might even be able to take the training wheels off some day in the distant future. As I said at the beginning, I’m shell-shocked by software. I haven’t been so frazzled since software appeared in our lives in the last century! Oh well, next week I promise to return to thoughts on the next series of The Modest Proposal Institute.

Books 1 & 2 of The Modest Proposal Institute