I’m nearly finished with the first draft of Dragon Black, Dragon White. I should be done by tomorrow, or Monday at the latest. Then it’s editing time. So I’m looking to send the advance copies out to my team by mid-to-late next week. I’m pleased with the overall story structure, but the particulars are going to need a lot of fine tuning. You never know until you start looking back at the draft. I don’t do that until the whole book is complete. It’s too tempting to start revising and then you can get bogged down tinkering instead of finishing.
So I’m looking at a release date somewhere around the 17th-20th. Dragon Red falls out of KU on the 14th, and I feel like the third week of this month is going to be a key turning point in my plans going forward. The free version of Dragon Blue already has thousands of downloads on iTunes, Kobo, and B&N. If the sell-through of the series is decent, I could be looking at a nice boost in revenue from those other sources. If the sales fall flat on those other platforms, then I’ll have to rethink my whole strategy. I plan on reapplying for a BookBub. If that falls through, I’ll still push on with some other paid promos to boost Dragon Blue‘s visibility around the launch of the 4th book and the release of books 2 and 3 on the other platforms. I’m really hoping for at least a 25-30% increase in revenue through those other channels, but we’ll see.
I’m going to at least write the first chapter of the 5th and final book in the series, entitled Dragon Gold: A Tale Untold. I’ll included it as a bonus at the end of DBDW. But I think I’m going to take a deep breath and think about what to work on next. I don’t want to limp across the finish line with this series. I think writing another novel in a different setting will likely give me the needed space from the series to recharge the creative batteries a little and finish the last book stronger. I’ve been thinking a lot about a trilogy of bear shifter stories set in a small Texas town. I like the worldbuilding that goes along with writing fantasy, but it can sometimes wear you out a little. If you write something set in contemporary America, you don’t have to conjure up every little detail of an imaginary world. That stuff is already there for you. You just have to describe it well. And then you can focus on stuff like the plot, the characters, and their relationships.
I’m not completely decided, though. I’m going to take a couple of days after hitting the publish button on DBDW to see how my publishing strategy is working. And I also plan to do a little more reading and research to see what people are most interested in reading right now. But so far I’m excited for 2017. I think that at least for my own writing career, it’s going to be a good one.