Cursed With Power Announcement

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Instead of doing my usual “beginning of the month” post, today I have more important news to announce.

As of yesterday, November 30th, Old Line Publishing has ceased operations. As many of you know, my first book (and the first book in the Magicians series) was published through Old Line Publishing. Unfortunately the company was not able to hold up financially any more, and thus all books published through them will be taken off of the market.

I heard about this news around the beginning of November. As much as it breaks my heart to know a company like OLP will be no more, I know this also means new opportunities are open to both me and the book. This post is to clarify exactly what is happening with Cursed With Power

As of today Cursed With Power is still available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and etc. The ebook is no longer available. I suspect very soon this will not be the case. I will be posting again when it is officially taken down from the market, being it will be unable to purchase during that time.

I will be self publishing Cursed With Power, as I did with the rest of the Magicians series. This is something I had been considering for several months now, and with OLP’s announcement it made it final for me. I will be once again self publishing through Createspace, meaning that CWP will be available again through Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Createspace and etc. I have the final files that were published and will be using these to re-release the book.

However, with OLP ceasing operations, the book cover will change. Since OLP supplied the book cover originally I will not be using it for the re-release. Since money is extremely tight right now with having moved and still settling in, I am working with someone in hopes of getting CWP back out into the market in a reasonable time. I believe we have a cover designer picked out, and I’ll be working with them to ensure the new cover fits the book even better (and aims more toward shouting “this is a fantasy book!” than the last cover).

When I re-release Cursed With Power the price for the paperback and ebook will be changing. I understand the original price of approximately $18 for the paperback was a common complaint, and I have taken that into consideration.

With so much happening to CWP, I will also be re-working the remainder of the Magicians series. My end goal is that by the time we re-release CWP I will also have covers lined up for the other three books, and can go back through the entire series with a fine comb (since they’re going to be re-releasing as well with new covers). By the end of all of this the series should have covers that let you know this is a series, the books are related to one another, and along with doing so, I’m making sure the writing is also top-notch.

Upon the re-release of the series I am also going to be changing over the entire series to be under the name Lindsey Richardson. When I originally released these books it was prior to my marriage. Now that I’ve been branding my new surname it’s the one I want to stick with. I think we all can agree Richardson is easier remembered than Sablowski. So expect to see that change in the book cover and throughout Amazon, Goodreads, and etc.

There’s a lot of work to be done. When I first heard the news about OLP, I’m not going to lie, I was freaking out. But fortunately I have some wonderful friends, authors, and other talented people who will be helping me make Cursed With Power‘s 2nd release stronger than the first!

Lastly, I realize this is a lot to take in. I’m still taking it in, even now as I type this. I honestly believe self publishing Cursed With Power is going to be a wonderful new opportunity, and I’m excited to see where it will take both me and the series. And to everyone who’s been a part of this journey and continues to be, thank you so much for your support.

Lindsey Richardson

 

Writing a series vs. a novel

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I am finally writing the post I’ve been wanting to write ever since I first started Clara and Claire. For those of you who are planning to write either, I’m hoping this can be helpful. There’s a lot of different ways I thought of tackling this, and mind you I’m going to include a lot of personal experience with this too. I think that’s a big part of writing. There’s no right way of doing something, but everyone’s experience varies.

Let’s face it a series takes a lot of planning. You might not have it all planned out at the beginning of book one. Unless you’re one of those people who have the whole series planned before you begin –to which I say bravo! But you can equally put just as much time into a standalone novel.

A series is a lot like a butterfly effect. If this happens, this will happen in the next book. If this character dies, this character won’t be in the rest of the series. It’s a lot of playing around with different ideas to see how they’ll fit into the puzzle. Because a series is, in a lot of ways, like a puzzle. You have to test the ideas, see how they work, and then if it doesn’t fit with the idea you have for the overall series you start over again.

With the Magicians series there were a lot of times I didn’t decide on the exact nature of the next book until I was finished with the current one. That’s just the way I write. But I constantly reminded myself after this book there would be another and another until the series ended.

There’s some other major points that make a series so different from a standalone novel:

  • Setting -There’s going to be a lot more time you’ll be spending with the setting of your novel. Even if your characters stay in the same place throughout all the books, there’s still a lot of development and thought you’ll need to put into it. You want this to be the world that’s special to your series, that separates it from other books.
  • Character development -Your characters need to be constantly developing throughout the whole series, just like real people do throughout their life. This is where the butterfly effect is huge. If something traumatic happens to your MC, we want to see and feel what effect that has on them. If they make a huge lifestyle change we want to know why and how it changes them afterward.
  • Voice -Maybe the voice changes throughout your series. For example, in my series the narrator changed with each book. So every book there was always a change in the voice because never the same person was telling the story. Even if this isn’t the case for you, your MC is going to be growing and changing throughout the series. What might have been a bitter MC at the beginning could end with a satisfied one.
  • Endings -endings are so important for series. I really can’t stress this enough. You have to end each book in a way to convince your readers to come back for more. Always leave them wanting more, which is easier said than done. My best suggestion for this is to read the endings of your favorite series and see how the author kept you coming back.

As for standalone novels they’re massively different from a series. This is a one time book. Afterwards you want the reader feeling like they’re just read an amazing book and can’t wait to read more from you.

A novel has everything a series has : character development, settings, a great ending, and your MC’s voice. Except all of these things you have to cram into one book. From someone who was used to only writing series, I found this to be the most challenging part. Like huh, how will this all fit into one book? So it’s important to plan and also recognize what’s in your novel’s ending. If at the end you still feel there’s more to tell, that it can’t all be said in one book, then maybe you need to write a sequel. But if you’re aiming for a standalone make sure you have everything wrapped up at the end.

With standalone novels this means you have one chance to impress the readers. By the end they should know whether they love it or hate it. And if you’ve done it right they should be searching your name to find other books by you. This is also a great chance to gain readers who don’t like series or don’t have the time for them.

Every author has their preference just like our readers do. As for me I’m still a sucker for series, but I loved the work I did for Clara and Claire and it has me excited for my next project –which I’ll be announcing after the release. But regardless I think it’s important for us to step away from the things we’re comfortable with and try something new. For me it was a standalone novel. For you it might be that romance novel you’ve been debating on writing. It can be anything, and if you don’t at first succeed keep writing. You can only get better!

Lindsey Richardson

Powered by Indie Month

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Amazon announced that for the entire month of October they’re celebrating “great writing self published” through their self publishing services (Createspace, KDP, ACX). They’re calling it “Powered by Indie,” and they’re encouraging indie authors to talk about their experience, share what they love about being self published, and perhaps most importantly spread the word.

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I’ve self published three books so far and am coming out with a fourth very soon. (Remember Cursed With Power, my first book, was traditionally published.) Shadows and Embers was my first self published book, and ever since then I haven’t looked back, only forward. I love being an indie author. When I realized how I had control over every aspect of my book’s publication from the beginning to the end I couldn’t believe it. It’s one of the best decisions I’ve made in my life. It’s certainly not for everyone, and that’s what makes this month so important. We need to bring more attention to indie authors!

Everything from the book cover, release date, and even down to how the pages look are in the hands of the author when you self publish. I’ve never had the same experience twice, and I always end up learning something new. The indie community is hands down amazing and supportive. These are the people who told me “you have to be willing to stand or fall with your book no matter what,” and that’s when I knew I was ready to make the plunge.

The success I’ve seen other indie authors have is what inspired me and will continue to inspire me for years to come.

Ever single book that I’ve self published (and any book that’s self published) I put the hours and dedication to. Every step of the way I was there, ensuring that the final product was exactly how it should be for my readers. It’s the hardest work I’ve ever done in my life, but if done right, it can also be the most rewarding.

And like with anything in life some days are stressful and other days are like a walk in the park. At the end of the day, I love what I do, and I love being able to go through the process and know exactly when and where my book is releasing.

If nothing else, I hope this month of Amazon sharing indie novels will encourage you to pick one up and check it out. And if you’re an indie author like me I encourage you to tell your readers why you chose this path. Who knows if indie authors will ever be treated the same way as traditionally published authors, but I’m hoping every day we step in the right direction for progress!

A huge shout out to all my readers –because you are the reason why I’m able to continue writing and releasing these books. Thank you so much.

Lindsey Richardson

Find my indie books online:

Shadows and Embers

Thicker Than Blood

Bloodline Inheritance