Staying Motivated

Sometimes it’s hard to stay motivated… especially when it feels like you’re just treading water. I’m not getting far in my quest to find world-wide distribution (aka: taking over the world via children’s literature) and that becomes a mental battle. I want to continue with my children’s books – I feel that I have a great third book lined up, but at the same time, there’s so many obstacles that I still need to overcome.

So what’s next?

Well, the editors feel that I need to change “The Sunflower” into a love story, and well, I agree, it would make more sense, but it wouldn’t be the same story that I was trying to get across.

The editors also want me to change the pictures in “My Blanket” but honestly, I don’t have the drawing ability to change, and I kind of feel the childish drawings add to it.

I guess I have a few choices, keep going until something sticks, or please the powers that be.

I’m going to choose to keep going. I started this. I’m going to end it the way I want it to end.

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ISBNs are Here! Samples Sent!

The dream is coming closer to becoming a reality. I just had ISBNs assigned to both “My Blanket” and “The Sunflower.”

I am sending out finished samples (minus the ISBN numbers) to select individuals for review. Hopefully something catches on. Here we go.

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Huge News! One Step Closer!

Just got my approval as an independent publisher for andychiangbooks.com!

What does that mean? It means that I am now able to submit my books for ISBN numbers! One step closer to being a legitimate author!

(sorry for the exclamation marks, but that’s how I express excitement on a blog post)

I Made It…

20131112_212952Look what came in the mail today… I made it…

I was so ecstatic to see these books sitting on my coffee table today. Yet, at the same time, I was a little frightened of the journey that is yet to come.

You might be wondering, but Andy, you already made your book, what’s next? The next step is to get the books in front of as many people as possible so that they can read through it and see where it might take me from there.

The journey is only beginning.

Oh yeah… news on the trilogy… yes there is a third book in the works!

Changes Coming for The Sunflower

For those that remember, the original title was “The Sunflower, The Peony, and The Casablanca.” After testing the name out with a few people, I found that the name was too long and it didn’t test well.

Even according to my faithful Mr. Suba, the name should be shortened. So hence, the name will now be simply titled “The Sunflower.” I wanted to add a subtitle, such as, “The Sunflower: A Story of Determination.”

We’ll see how it tests out. For those who have seen the cover photo below, you’ll notice that my drawing style has changed a little. I can tell you that I plan to change my style for every book – so that each book has its own unique “flavour.”

As for the test reads, it seems that I will have to modify the story and the images… which means, those of you who are lucky enough to be in possession of version 1.0, will be holding a rare copy of the book.

Check out the facebook page for some exclusive images from The Sunflower book.

Front Cover - The Sunflower

The Book is Shipped!

Huge news, I’ve finally placed the order for the books – only a small quantity mind you (for myself and for samples) – and they are set to arrive on Nov. 19, 2013. It did cost me a pretty penny (after taxes, almost $32 a book), so I still need to find a better way to produce the books.

For those wondering, I went through blurb.ca so that I can eventually sell my book on there as well.

Now comes the next step, building up hype for the book so that people actually want it!

I’m not sure how I’m going to do it yet, but many are suggesting kickstarter or just using the blurb bookstore.

I know my methods aren’t the best as you’ve probably all been taught to plan first before you dive in. Well, take me as a learning example, as if I fail horribly, make sure you DO NOT follow anything that I’ve blogged.

Where’s Your Book???

I know – a lot of you have been wondering (probably not), but no excuses here. I’ve been working, at my real job of course, and the schedule has really thrown me off a lot. Plus, a week vacation to Los Angeles didn’t help.

That being said, the November launch date may have been a bit ambitious. I plan on having everything to blurb┬áby the end of this week and I should have my first physical copy in my hands by mid-November. The first major hurdle, in my eyes, is quantity. I’m planning on printing 5 copies, which would put the price upwards of $30 USD per book. So, maybe this will just be a super expensive first edition.

The plan is still to launch both My Blanket and the Sunflower story. Oh, and don’t worry, I’ll start posting teasers of the Sunflower story soon.

I do have to admit, I think my MS Paint skills have improved immensely since starting this book thing.

Word of Advice for Aspiring Writers and Children

I have one simple piece of advice for everyone who is looking to publish an ebook, regular book, or any sort of media format – learn to use all the Adobe tools available to you. Sure it’s fun and all that I made everything via MS Paint, but at the end of the day, if you want to make something really look nice and really stand out? You need to use these tools.

Who said covers never sold books? Because they do!

So right now, the first tool I’m going to learn is Adobe InDesign. Hopefully it leads me somewhere as Adobe programs have always been the bane of my computer abilities.