Reflecting on July 2015… No Spare Money… & Hyper Japan Convention…

I’m still tinkering with ‘Get Over It With CBT’, my self-help book. It’s cooking nicely I think. I’m taking a break from it, and then I’ll look over it with fresh eyes. The husband has not really wanted to edit this one. He likes reading my fiction, but this really isn’t his thing. This means I haven’t really had an outside opinion and I can’t afford to have this one edited. I’m not too worried as it’s not a fiction title and the writing is more straight forward. I’m reading up on professional edits I’ve had done on other work so that I can learn from my common mistakes and reading up on proof reading and general grammar so I have a keener eye to spot my mistakes when I go back to it.

Just the other week we received another notice of a big maintenance bill coming our way for the building our flat is in. Ouch. This is on top of a huge one from last year, so my savings have been hit. I’m not pleading poverty and I’ll be able to save it back up as I’ve been a good geek and not been buying too much in the way of toys. Sadly. However, it has highlighted a problem with this self-publishing business. I’m not making a profit from it. Don’t get me wrong. I have regular sales still, even if it’s only a handful a day, but the profit margin on them is very low. So it’s actually not so much a business as a hobby. A very expensive hobby. I guess there’s always the potential of it making me money in the future (applying some techniques from my self-help book there…) but until then, each edit makes a sizable hole in my savings. That’s no criticism of my editor at all, from what I’ve seen she’s very reasonable, and like anyone providing a service and expertise, they should be paid their due. Besides, I enjoy having her involvement. However, with my last novel on her desk I’ll be getting another bill later this year, and that will be the end of what I can justify in writing expenses until way into 2016.

So… what to do. Not write? No chance. I need to write or I’ll be left with the real world outside our front door. And I really don’t like this real adult life business that much. I still have the second run of ‘The Darkwood Mysteries’ partly done and some cracking ideas for some regular contemporary horror novels I want to get on with. So I could queue them up and edit them when I’m ready. But, I’m going to go for option 3… Write what I can but also work harder at improving my proofreading skills and see how I get on in editing my own work. That could be dangerous. Typos and flowery writing could slip by, but needs must. I’m planning on writing tighter and shorter than my previous novels, as three of them are pretty hefty 400+page affairs, so hopefully they will be easier to manage.

I’ve just entered ‘The Darkwood Mysteries: The Thief of Faces’ into an Inkitt writing competition. So, please drop by and give Darkwood and Hobbs a vote and a review and a general bit of fuss. I’m not particularly in it for the prizes, but for the exposure. Because I’m a whore. Well, the series really needs attention as they just aren’t selling. Shame. Especially as I have so much planned for the series. That’s what happens when you do 0 promotion and just rely on Facebook and Twitter I guess.

Aside from writing I’ve had a bit of a Japanese month. We’ve been plowing through some anime on Netflix and loving it, and I’ll be sharing my thoughts on the shows I’ve been watching soon, and we went to the Hyper Japan convention at the O2 Centre in London. It was a really good day out. Lots of stalls filled with anime merch, and selective aspects of Japanese culture and food. I actually wasn’t the ‘When in Rome, act like a stuffy British person’ I thought I would be and tried some sushi. Which was amazing. I had onigiri and maki–so nice. I also experienced the Japanese roulette experience of sweets. Which were largely like our pick and mix in this country, until I had the rubbery ABOMINATION that was a tapioca cushion. Like most conventions it was great seeing people going all out on the crazy costumes. My other half picked up this little dude for geekagerie on our desk:

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A little Eren Yaeger from ‘Attack on Titan’. He’s super poseable and comes with different expressions and some nice little accessories. And I picked up a cute super-deformed Darth Vader:

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We had a really good day there, and we’ve already booked up for the Hyper Japan Christmas convention. So, that was my July.

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