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First sale for Exogenesis!

31 May

Sooo…..I’ve started doing promo for my book but it is a lot more difficult than I thought it would be.


Exogenesis has been up on Smashwords, Amazon.com and co.uk and Lulu.com for a week now and not not one single sale. -sad face-


EDIT! My first sale! Things are beginning to look up. Slowly. haha. I actually have a rank now on Amazon.com


Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #56,265 Paid in Kindle Store
Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #39,409 Paid in Kindle Store
Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #37,598 Paid in Kindle Store

I posted at some forums and emailed at least two dozen blogs for a review but haven’t received any feedback yet – except to say that they’re busy (and one person said she felt uncomfortable reviewing a book about demons and the Devil).


EDIT! The first positive reply. I will start a list of blogs that have agreed to review Exogenesis.


1. Kindle Obsessed: 
www.kindleobsessed.com (she has June off so probably sometime in July)

My book is also featured on: 
http://paradox-theangelsarehere.blogspot.com/

http://paradox-theangelsarehere.blogspot.com/2011/06/r-linnenkoper-debut-novel-exogenesis.html


On a more positive note, I sent off my manuscript to a literary consultancy for an assessment so I hope I will learn a lot from that.


Although my book now counts 81,000 glorious words instead of a mortal 77,000. Let’s see what they say to version one before we continue with anymore edits.


I also tried to create a book video because that might help sales but my software abandoned me twice and I didn’t want to start over a third time so I gave up for now.


Celestial Mists: Exogenesis

25 May

After a brainstorming session with my sister (in the form of an impromptu association exercise), we came up with a more genre-appropriate title for my book. We decided to stick to Exogenesis for the book itself and renamed the series to Celestial Mists.

My sister also created a new cover (plus covers for two sequels, for kicks), using Ciska’s drawing for the illustration.

I have also decided to try a literay consultancy and I await their verdict. I think it would be beneficial to get a professional editor to take a serious look at my manuscript so we can polish and perfect it for (paperback) publishing. But I am sure it will be a long process. However, I am prepared to put in the work.

>Book Review: Anne of Green Gables

19 Feb

>

Anne of Green Gables is one of those classics that millions of children grew up with. I, however, grew up with the famous Megan Follows adaptation that first aired in the 80’s. My aunt instilled in me a love for all things Anne and Gilbert and we watched the series on old tapes, despite the fact that bits and pieces were missing.
Imagine our joy when it was released on DVD a few years ago. We’ve watched it many times since and a while ago, I got it into my head that I should read the books that first gave birth to the colourful world of Avonlea. I always likened myself to Anne; I have the same wild imagination and thirst for knowledge and books. No, I’m not Canadian and my hair isn’t red. But I’m sure that if Anne and I were to meet, she’d find me a kindred spirit.
The first book opens with a description of Anne’s childhood and at first, her endless ramblings left me breathless. She is instantly loveable but I found myself wondering how anyone could speak quite so much. But I was much delighted with the idea of giving places names such as “Lover’s Lane” and “The Lake of Shining Waters”. Perhaps we should all invent names more suitable for the places we adore. Mrs. Lynde, next-door neighbour to the Cuthberts, is entertaining from the start, that’s what. Meddlesome people who always pride on speaking their minds can become good friends too.
Although the book greatly differed from the adaptation in some points (some things were completely left out of the series, such as Anne visiting Sunday school and their story writing club), I never found myself annoyed at the differences or skipping pages. It did strike me as strange that Gilbert Blythe rarely appeared throughout the book save for mentions to their rivalry and the occasional brief interaction. It was evident from the first that he harboured romantic feelings for Anne, who must’ve seemed to him so much more worldly than her peers in her reflections and ambitions. 
Montgomery’s purple prose has been much talked of and at times, I tired of her descriptions and passed over them very quickly but it very much suited Anne’s personality so I do not mind it. No one I know would dedicate so many speeches to the trees and flowers of this world, but that is one character trait that is unique to Anne Shirley. Despite her many virtues, she is a very flawed girl; vain, temperamental and resentful (towards Gilbert, who she stubbornly refuses to forgive for calling her ”Carrots” as they first meet). But it is her flaws that make her appealing and she always strives to improve herself and never makes the same mistakes twice.
Dashing Gilbert Blythe 
Marilla perfectly counters Anne her dreaminess with her practical ways and Matthew, a quiet but kind fellow rarely strings more than two sentences together; however, his actions and thoughts are described in detail when he has not the courage to share this information verbally. Without a doubt, Montgomery is a very gifted storyteller. When we read the book, we are transported to Prince Edward Island and the characters that inhabit it seem incredibly lifelike. We can visualise the flowers and taste the liniment cake that Anne bakes. I did notice an overuse of adjectives in speech tags early on but this seemed to improve as the book went on. 
Anne of Green Gable is a very agreeable experience that takes us through a vital stage in a girl’s life. We first meet Anne when she is but eleven and at the end of the book, she is a young woman of sixteen. We cheer her on when she struggles to fit in and snicker at the many scrapes she gets herself in. It is a very realistic portrait of a young girl and I eagerly await her next adventures.

5/5 stars

>Reading List 2011

18 Jan

>Enough already.

I’m sick of buying new books only to display them on my shelf. I’m sick of starting to read a book and then abandoning it with equal enthusiasm.

What is the point of having a bookshelf full of books if they’re only there for decorative purposes?

I’ve made myself a promise this year: I will not buy any new books before I have read every book on the shelf.

I’m writing this at work so the list below may in incomplete. First draft:

THE LIST OF DOOM:

READ:

Pride and Prejudice
Northanger Abbey
Persuasion
The Painted Veil
Masterclass in writing fiction
The art and craft of storytelling
Bridget Jones’s Diary

STARTED READING:

Wuthering Heights
Bram Stoker’s Dracula
Emma

UNREAD:

Mansfield Park
Sense and Sensibility – part of my Reading Challenge
Victorian Life
A Journal Of the Plague Year
Ulysses
Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
Middlemarch
Anne of Green Gables (not yet received)

I’m happy about one thing: that most of my books are still back home so I can’t possibly read those (excuses, excuses…).

After that I should move on to my e-reader. That’s still chock-full of partially-read books. But that’ll come later. Let’s start reading! Once I finish one of them, I will write a review.

>Books vs. E-readers

7 Jan

>

I bought the Sony Pocket Edition E-reader a while ago and have been using it for months now. As such, I would like to discuss the advantages of e-readers and compare them to those of regular books so potential buyers might make up their mind more easily.


E-reader:

* Light and relatively small. Makes it easy to carry and enables you to read without getting in anyone’s way.
* Modern, pretty design. Will make it look as if you are up-to-date on technology. 
* Room for up to 300 books so you only need one device to keep yourself entertained.
* Automatically keeps track of your progress. No need to use bookmarkers.
* The eBook library allows you to transfer PDF, Word and other text files to your e-reader.
* When you order an e-book, you don’t have to wait for delivery. You can download it instantly.

Cons:

* New product so not all books are available yet as e-books.
* Don’t come with bookcovers.
* Not the same as a rare first edition on your bookshelf.



Books:

* Have a lovely cover that looks good on your bookshelf.
* Are available in different editions that can be quite valuable.
* More books available than e-books.
* Give one an air of intellect (also a potential con when viewed as a bookwurm)
* Perusing a bookshop can be a nice experience, looking for the purchase that’s just right.

Cons:

* Heavy and usually quite big.
* Books take longer to be delivered when ordered online.
* More fragile – can tear rather easily. 

Conclusion:

The e-reader clearly has the advantage in terms of storage space and comfort but books still hold a certain charm. You don’t really sit down with an e-reader and a glass of wine so books have the edge when it comes to ambiance. It’s fun to visit a stuffy bookstore or read a book at Borders with a cup of coffee. The e-book market is one that is limited to cyberspace and that is not a very welcoming or friendly environment. Practical? Yes, certainly. But I understand why some readers are hesitant to make the switch.


Any thoughts? Anyone agree or disagree?