When I published EVERY SHATTERED THING, there wasn't much forethought going into a release date. I got lucky. There weren't many contemporary indie novels released that week, and so the market wasn't as saturated as it ould have been.
Things changed with SOMEWHERE BETWEEN WATER AND SKY. In the year between my two releases, there was a massive contemporary boom within the industry. Not only that, suspense + thriller became a trend. Enter book two.
Finding a release date for my second book proved difficult because I juggled a lot of timelines outside of my own: my editor, my cover artist, the cover reveal, the availability of my PR crew, and the release of other books. Originally, I looked at a publishing date in August. Because of my cover not being complete until end of July (maybe) beginning of August, and because a bunch of books were being released those last two weeks of August, I decided to release the book in September.
Once I knew the range of dates I could look at (within first few weeks of the month). I did some research on anticipated releases for my genre. There were a lot, even after the crazy amount released in August. Because of this, I knew the market was saturated which meant sales could possibly be a fraction of what my first book offered. This was good to know, because within the market I'm still a very, very young author. My audience is small compared to most, but it's growing. I had a choice: either wait until the market slowed down, or publish anyway.
Here's the thing — there will always be book releases.
Setting a release date before you even finish the book is the best way to go because it builds in accountability. However, if you've written your book and are now looking for the perfect date to release, pay attention to your market.
What are the bestsellers? Who are those authors? What books are being released around the time you want to publish? Are you doing a cover reveal at all? When?
The more intentional you are about your process and marketing strategy, the more focused you'll feel during the writing + publishing stages.
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You'll get hints and anecdotes about getting unstuck and living your most artistic life within the midst of your every day poetics. AND, if you sign up during October, you'll get some special extras dealing with indie-publishing.