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What I want to do around here

Photo by Robert Bye on UnsplashPhoto by Robert Bye on Unsplash

Right now, I am working with Angie on Book 4 of our Shepherd & Wolfe series. Since early last year, I’ve been wanting to do some writing of my own, to work on my voice and try some different ideas, tones, and genres. I do feel it’s a muscle I haven’t stretched for a long time.

I’m not quite sure what this will all look like, but I have some ideas.

  1. I’ve thought a lot about whether I want to get an agent and go the traditional route, or self-publish these works again, and I think I’m leaning towards self-publish, mainly because I want to test out a bunch of ideas and see what sticks.
  2. Furthermore, I believe that we should get paid for our work (we are providing entertainment or meaning in exchange for payment), so I expect to create some sort of system for that.
  3. Yet, underlying this idea is that I don’t need it all. I don’t want/need blockbuster/bestsellers. I am a huge fan of Kevin Kelly’s 1000 true fans, which says that you only need that small group of people to invest in your work. If I could build that, I’d be delighted.
  4. The system I like is a patron/membership model, where people can pay a monthly and/or yearly fee for regular work. I am torn between something like CAD 50 and CAD 100, more of which I will speak about why shortly.
  5. For paying members, I’d like to offer links to the html, PDF, mobi, MP3, and ebook (all DRM free), so that you’d have your option on how you’d like to read it. This definitely has become my favourite form of independent release, built from Derek Sivers example.
  6. Added onto this idea, I think I’d like to offer early access for paying members. Maybe showing how the book in progress like Pieter Levels, or at least sharing the completed sections (again like Derek Sivers)
  7. On more successful writing, I’d like to move towards special printings of physical books. I could do paperbacks, but I’d also consider a special hardcover printing.
  8. I’d consider organizing this through pre-sales (inspired by Craig Mod), and offering signed-in (perhaps even numbered) copies. But if there is extra, I’d likely sell physical copies in stores.
  9. This choice to sell physical copies is where the monthly/yearly fee raises a bunch of questions:
    1. Even if I charge CAD 100, it can’t cover all aspects of printing and shipping, but perhaps it earns discounts.
    2. As a supporter, you don’t have to pay the margin cost, but cover the shipping cost and perhaps some of the printing. This also depends on how many physical books come out in a year.
    3. Also, if you invest only monthly, it doesn’t seem right that you can get the discount, since you could leave at any time (I did see that Craig Mod does suggest upgrading to the yearly subscription to get the discounts, which helps build those annual memberships).
    4. I’ve created a questionnaire to share your thoughts.
  10. Also, there is a lot of room for fun amidst this, like a word in each book that tells a story.

So, that’s it (at least, I think so). I will probably come back to this post and update it if new ideas or thoughts come.

Last update Feb. 8, 2021

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