I began work on the novelization of Madam President, my short story currently available on Smashwords. While it's not my most popular work, I feel like there's much potential in it. It's a retelling of the Faust story with the protagonist being a presidential candidate. So there's the opportunity for me to talk about religion and politics--the two subjects that cause arguments at dinner parties, but often gets authors noticed. Anyway, I've immersed myself in some pre-reading.
My revision of The Spark has been on Smashwords since September, but without the accompanying newsletter. I've been working on that, too, and finally finished it this week. I'm not going to release it yet, though, because I want to focus on promotion for A Single Step through November. After Thanksgiving, downloads of Christmas stories should take off on Smashwords and then I'll release The Spark newsletter to ALSN subscribers.
I've been pondering over means for getting publicity for my website and my books. The best way, I believe, is simply to get my stories into ezines and magazines and I've begun that process with Fire Dance. It's a slow process, however, and I also want to let people know about what I already have out there. So I thought I'd try some advertising.
I put a small classified ad for A Single Step in the Jackson Free Press. It's been running about a week and it's generated some clicks to the book's Smashwords page, but no takers. So I decided to try a "blog ad" on the JFP website for a week. I put one together and submitted it over the web. It's running now.
The Blogads website looked like it might be a relatively iinexpensive means for advertising, so I'm trying a couple of more ads on The Story Siren and Literary Kicks websites (see the NEWS tab).
Regarding current reading, I'm still working on The Windup Girl by Paolo Bacigalupi. It's hard to fit reading into my daily routine because I'm busy with the day job and with writing at night. Reading is an important discipline for a writer, though, and I must set a higher priority on it. But the book is very good--it's a Hugo and Nebula award-winner. I'm down to the last quarter and I'll give you a little review of it when I'm finished.