NaNoWriMo2015 Participant

Its National Write A Novel Month! Last year, I attempted this ludicrous idea of trying to write 50k words in 30 days. Somehow through the blood, sweat, and tears -- I did it! The story of April was born! 

This year I will be attempting it again! I am currently working on a spin off of the April story. I've gotten quite a few emails and read some reviews where people are asking for more about Jared & April. Unfortunately, this story is not about them. BUTTTT-- They both make a surprise appearance in this tale. 

This story is about that mysterious Officer John Smith! Even writing his character, I knew there was more to him. There was a reason he was drawn to April, a reason he couldn't let her go. So, this is his love story. You find out just how much Ms. April Landau affected him. 

The book will be a dual point of view between him and another character ;) It will encompass college issues, of alcoholism, obnoxious fraternity boys, a promiscuous roommate, failing classes and of course heart break. I'll bring you back on campus to North Commons University a few years in the future and introduce some fun quirky new characters. 

Back into the writing cave I go! Wish me Luck! 

Why I re-enrolled in Kindle Unlimited

There's much controversy and opinions over the new Kindle Unlimited and updates. Here's my experience:  

Since I self published my first book back in December 2013, I have seen that most (if not all) of my monthly sales were on Amazon. So, I made the much debated decision to pull out of Barnes & Noble and Smashwords and enroll in the KDP Select Program for the three month period. 

From that point on, I saw more borrows that sales. I allowed it to continue to renew. But, when they announced the new changes as of 7/1/15 -- ( Changes such as Pay-by-page and not per sale and the fact that I wouldn't have  an accurate count of sales) I became skeptical like the rest of the authorship. So, I performed my own experiment. 

I didn't renew my KDP Select contract as of 7/28 and even lowered my prices. Here's what happened: 

  1. I re-published on B&N & Smashwords -- Sales were a whopping -- zero 
  2. Even with the same amount of social media presence and email blast on my part AND a lowered price, I sold FOUR books. FOUR frieken books! An all time low for me. 

Needless to say, I barely made it to the 15th before re-enrolling in KDP Select.

Yes, KDP Select has it's disadvantages like exclusivity to only Amazon. But, honestly that's where I have the most of my sales anyway. Every month, I have triple the amount of borrows than sales. Additionally, when I received my monthly statement for July I surprisingly found that I earned more on the per-page changes than I did the previous month when it was based on actual sales. (my book is about 90k words) 

That is just my experience with KDP Select. I have personally found it to be very beneficial. Kindle deal days have helped put me in the bestsellers category on multiple occasions. And, I find that readers are more likely to read a book by a new author if its at little to no cost to them. Kindle Unlimited has been a win/win for me. My only regret is losing potential royalties for those 15 days I wasn't enrolled. 

Feel free to tell me how KDP is working for you. 

Writing Books That Inspire

Everyone writes. Writing is done on a daily basis from diaries to emails, school papers to love notes. Anyone can write something down, it's reaching out and touching people that's hard to do. 

In a world where millions of people self publish daily, what makes your work stand out amongst the crowd? Why should anyone read your book? It's the way you make them feel. I feel like every book should serve a purpose. Whether it is to take people away from their mundane life, shine light on a touchy subject, or to inspire. 

When stories began to come to me I asked myself the same question, Sheena why do you want to write? If I'm going to put my time, sweat, and tears into this-- What do I hope to gain? The answer for me, was simple. I wanted a creative outlet for my feelings that would touch and inspire other people. The first half of Seraphina started out as a way for me to express my feelings through words. The second half became a way for me to inspire myself that better things were coming. I thought if I can inspire myself, who's to say I can't inspire others? 

That's when it hit me, If I'm going to continue to publish books, they are going to damn well mean something, not just to me. They will all have an empowering and inspiring theme that is relatable to readers of all ages. So, that is my ultimate goal-- to write books that inspire. 

Craziest Thing I've ever done..

I just did the craziest most spontaneous thing I've ever done... I just quit my job. Yup, my job. my good old fashioned 9-5 with a 401k and kushy benefits. Why you ask?  Well, that's the best part (in my opinion, I'll probably be reamed by my family later) I quit to pursue my writing career. 

Before you go calling the insane asylum let me explain! I've come to the conclusion that it's now or never for me. I've reached a point in my life that it's either make it or break it. I know with a full time job I will never be able to put my all into my writing. A wise man once told me if you believe in yourself, you shouldn't have a back up plan. That's setting yourself up for failure from the get-go. 

So, here I go throwing caution to the wind and thrusting myself full time into the world of sentences, paragraphs, and above all my insane imagination. Follow me on this long journey of mine.