Peacekeeper Pathogen is now at 52,259 words. Unfortunately, I seem to be working on the ending. It is not going to be a quick ending though so the final word count of the first draft will most likely be around 65k. That's not too bad, but it does not satisfy my desire for a minimal size of 80k. This is, however, the first draft and there are a large number of items I need to go back and add. What worries me though is that during my editing, I typically remove sentences, shorten them, and generally make the manuscript shorter. Getting the book rounded out to a minimal 80k could be a challenge. We will see what happens as the story continues to unfold in the computer.
I have several pieces of news to share with you in this department. Let's start with where I was yesterday--the Cuyahoga County Library Indie Author Expo. This was their second year and 53 authors were granted permission to set up in the library auditorium to sell their books. The only requirement for entry was to have published a book within the past 2 years. You send them a copy of the book and if it is approved, you're in. Here is a picture of the event in progress as viewed from my table.
Even though this was only their second year, there was a large turn-out. I did sell an entire set of my Dragonverse series. That might seem like a small accomplishment but events like this are more than just sales. I had printed out several copies of my self-publishing guide and by the end of the 2-hour event, they were all gone. I also talked to a lot off people and handed out a good number of business cards. I also met several of the other authors were there.
Now here's the interesting part: When I got up this morning and checked ebook sales, they were up a noticeable amount. People will go to these events and a few will buy a physical book. But, if you engage with them and give them a good impression as to who you are, they will take a business card, go home, and buy a book online. For me, this event was worth it and I will look forward to returning next year.
Readers of this blog will also recall that I've been experimenting with Amazon advertising. With one exception, I've been pretty happy with it. The exception is the experiment I did in allowing Amazon to automatically choose my keywords and promotional opportunities itself. I've let this run for a few months and the results have been much less than I anticipated. In fact, I have received only a single click event costing me $0.05 the last time I checked. Amazon advertising does work but only if you elect to enter your keywords manually. I will be doing this very soon.