MY 2021 PUBLISHING ANNIVERSARY!

It seems like more than four years have gone by since the release of my first book. Having re-visited the last three anniversary posts, I discovered that while the tune has changed, the dance remains the same. Progress? Undoubtedly. Frustration? By the bushel. Pleasure? Enough to keep me addicted. Desire to continue? Yes! Before looking ahead, allow me to share some snippets from the last three anniversary posts.

2018

“l wish I had some fellow authors I could talk to when I need to vent or ask advice.” Unfortunately, this wish is yet to be fulfilled. I’ve always had difficulty making friends and am not very good at putting myself out there. I haven’t the foggiest idea how this will ever happen, short of a writer’s conference or something similar, and I lack the funds and confidence to ever attend one!

“Other than sales, I find motivation in two things: I love to write, and readers enjoy my work.” Thankfully, this is still true! While sales are encouraging and provide the resources to continue publishing, I continue writing because I have stories to tell, and people want to read them. It’s encouraging to note that my skills improve with each new book, confirmed by increased sales and reader feedback.

2019

“I intend to focus on shorter works rather than novels and will probably set aside romances for more sci-fi and fantasy.” The grand experiment of shorter works kept me going during a financially lean year. I posted a series of five stories on my blog in serial fashion, which took most of the year, and finally published them as Rise of the Draman in 2020. While the book garnered wonderful reviews, it’s a tough one to market. Sadly, I can’t afford to write only what I want (yet) if it doesn’t bring in enough income to pay for itself. So, for now, I remain busy with romance and plan on other genres in the future.

Incidentally, readers have been asking when I will write more Sci-Fi. Truthfully, I don’t know. It’s not for lack of interest, and I have some creative and exciting ideas to explore. Aside from no time, one issue is that many sci-fi readers are difficult to please, insisting that only hard science fiction is TRUE science fiction and anything else is garbage. I vigorously disagree, but those same readers have no qualms about bashing authors with scathing reviews if they happen to pick up a story that doesn’t meet their expectations. While I have no desire to paint a target on my back, I refuse to let them win.

2020

“Despite personal setbacks, financial concerns, and the pandemic, the last twelve months have been fruitful ones.” Oddly, the pandemic helped me focus and brought new readers who were locked in at home with nothing to do! I enjoyed seeing increased output and a significant upswing in sales, giving me a much-needed boost during trying times.

“Last year’s goals never materialized for various reasons.” I’m afraid this trend continues, as only one and a half of my five goals were reached! I did manage (sort of) to set up one of my titles for print-on-demand. I started the process last December, and it’s still ongoing due to the pandemic’s impact on the printing industry. My other books will have to wait until the world returns to some kind of normal.

The one goal I achieved—to focus on writing new material—resulted in publishing two books last year and writing a significant portion of another. In June of this year, I released my tenth novel!

########

Moving Forward

Currently, I am working on a new romance series based on major holidays featuring bear shifters and their human mates. Meanwhile, if time allows and my creative juices provide good plot ideas, I intend to write one or two more Gladstone Shifters stories. My hope is to move on to other projects in the next couple of years.

At present, I have one simple goal – WRITE. Write to the exclusion of almost everything else and publish as many books per year as possible. Each new release creates a sixty-day frenzy of excitement and sales before dropping off. If I can increase from two book releases per year to three or four, it gives my brand that much more exposure and boosts income. Meanwhile, I learn more about the craft and incrementally improve my skills. Everybody wins this way, and I don’t stress out over all the things I’m supposed to be doing.

Even with this stripped-down focus, it’s very difficult to address some of the goals on my wish-list, which include wider distribution beyond Amazon, a newsletter, an updated website, membership in writer’s groups, print-on-demand for my backlist, and the introduction of audiobooks. Unfortunately, all of those things require either time, money, or skills I don’t possess—so they have to wait while I focus on what I can do.

As I said back in 2019, “Perhaps I’ll get a lucky break and win an award or be offered a movie deal.” While that would be wonderful, I’m not counting on it! I believe realistic goals and persistence will eventually get me where I want to be, and I’m looking forward to another great year!

Author: Alexander Elliott

Alexander Elliott lives in the upper Midwest and is the author of books in multiple genres, including science-fiction, fantasy, paranormal, and romance. His work is replete with themes of love, passion, family, humor, hope, and acceptance. The author is known for masterful storytelling and creative world-building. His books feature realistic, well-developed characters, emotional depth, sizzling romance, and all the adventure, action, and intrigue necessary for a great read. If you have enjoyed his work, Alexander would love to hear from you! Email: aelliottbooks@gmail.com Website: https://aelliottbooks.com/

4 thoughts on “MY 2021 PUBLISHING ANNIVERSARY!”

  1. Congrats on another year! Your next book sounds fun & a change from wolves to bears will be great. Who doesn’t like a sexy bear shifter?! You always have great stories & I look forward to whatever comes next. Keep the stories coming!

  2. Thank you, Theresa. It’s great to hear from you! I’m having fun with new material and a different shifter type. Be good this year and you may find a cuddly bear under your tree!

  3. Hello! I just discovered your Gladstone series this week. I thoroughly enjoyed reading them, and I wish there were more. I wanted to compliment you on your attention to detail. I am often frustrated by authors who don’t take the time to research details they include in their books, like how long it takes to drive from one location to another. It may seem nitpicking, but but such inaccuracies take me right out of the story. Your attention to even these small details was a joy. As someone who lives near Bemidji, it was nice to see some of your story set in my neck of the woods!

    Good luck with your next year of writing.

    1. I heartily agree! Details are crucial for creating a believable world and story. I’m glad you appreciated my efforts. Also, it’s great to hear from a reader who actually lives in/near the setting for my series. I hope to start on book 5 in the next couple of months, though not sure of a release date. Thanks for reading and contacting me!

I'd love to hear from you!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.