As I previously mentioned, earlier this week I decided to run a free Kindle promotion for my short story, The Last Stop, a paranormal thriller about six strangers on a train. In the past, I’ve tried to plan promotions in advance and get the promotion listed on various promotion websites. I didn’t do that this time, I just logged into KDP, said I wanted the book free on May 23-25, and let it do its thing. Why? Well, my novel is going through beta-reading right now, and the novel and the short story are completely different genres, and I figured promoting the short story might hurt me long term. So I simply decided a blog post and a few tweets would be enough. At best, I’ve achieve maybe 40 downloads during a free promotion.
This time I got 288 over the three days.
How did I get nearly 300 downloads? I have no idea. But, I’m happy about it. Very happy. Obviously. Why? Well, in the past few weeks I’ve been regularly blogging and tweeting—something I wasn’t doing before. That’s the only thing I can think of that would make this promotion so successful. Of course, my blog’s reach isn’t huge (I got more downloads than blog visits over the course of the promotion) and Twitter isn’t exactly huge either… but something happened.
Anyway, even before the promotions unexpected success, I decided this would be the final promotion for it, as I don’t want any genre confusion when Not Famous is finally published. So, I hope you took advantage of the free promotion while it lasted!
Okay, it has definitely been too long since I’ve posted. But I will try to make up for that. Anyway… A lot has happened since my last blog entry. First of all, The Last Stop has since undergone some editing, a new cover design, and a paperback edition! Here is the new cover design:
In other news, I’ve recently started a new horror novella… that’s in addition to the novel I’ve been working on for a few years now… I know it’s probably not the greatest idea to start something new when I haven’t finished something I’ve been desperately trying to finish, but have been unable to due to lack of time, but hey… it’s hard to let a good idea go unstarted…
So, that’s the latest… more updates to come in the future and more frequently!
As I mentioned in an earlier blog post, I have written a short story and published it through Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing.
The story is called The Last Stop, and it is about six strangers on the last train of the evening back to the suburbs. These strangers soon discover they are trapped on the train, which isn’t making any stops. Tensions rise as they try to figure out the nature of their predicament, and how, if possible, to get off the train before it’s too late.
The idea for The Last Stop came to me in a dream I had over a year ago. I rarely remember my dreams, but this one stuck. From this dream I saw potential for a compelling short story based on the idea of strangers stuck on subway in an infinite loop. Subway commuters typically keep to themselves (especially late at night) and I couldn’t help wondering what would happen when an inexplicable problem arises that affects all the passengers.
I never expected I would ever write a story with any supernatural or paranormal elements to it, but the more I thought about the idea the more fascinated I became with where I could potentially take it. Still, at its core, it’s a story about a bunch of strangers in a high stress situation who are forced to deal with that situation as a group.
The Last Stop is available on Amazon as an eBook download for only 99 cents.
My latest piece for What Culture lists 8 examples of television sitcoms that had an episode where a baby was born on an elevator. Truth be told, it has happened more than eight times. I did the research.
The heart of the issue here is not silliness of the circumstances that lead pregnant women in TV world to get stuck on elevators moment before birth, but the complete lack of originality of writing in the entertainment industry. I say the entertainment industry, and not just television because it happens in movies, too… the recycling of old ideas. How many reboots and sequels are being produced right now? I have no idea, but it seems like a lot. Sam Raimi’s Spiderman trilogy made have ended poorly, but who really wanted a reboot so soon? Chris Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy became the definitive Batman for at least a generation, but there’s still talks of another reboot.
I can’t think of any examples at the moment, but I don’t doubt that the same thing happens in fiction writing. Given the explosion of self-publishing—and even without it—the market is supersaturated with content. Even if everyone’s ideas were conceived individually, and without prior literary influence, there will be storylines that are similar.
When I conceived the idea of my novel, I actually made an attempt to determine if the idea had been done before. I’m fairly confident that it has not. If the plot idea had been done before, in largely the same way, I’d have likely scrapped the whole thing and come up with a new idea. I want to tell my own story and not rely on old, overused plotlines and gags in an attempt to gain interest. I wonder why television writers don’t feel the same way?