Lexifabricographer For when the right word just won’t do…

October 17, 2012

MRP Day 16 – Celebrating the successes of others

Filed under: friends,the month of relentless positivity,wordsmithery — lexifab @ 3:45 pm

Last night I received an email letting me know that one of my stories currently out for submission has made it through to the second round of reading. Which I have interpreted, perhaps naively, as meaning that someone didn’t automatically think that it sucked. Now I am certainly not getting ahead of myself – this particular story has already been rejected by a couple of other publishers – but it does put me in mind of the fact that sometimes things do go your way. The stars align, hard work and good luck pay off and someone backs up a truckload of cash and awards in acknowledgment of your genius [1].

In lieu of something of my own to celebrate, though, I can take great pleasure in the success of others. Today is a case in point – my homeys of the Canberra Speculative Fiction Guild entered a team in the 2012 Write-a-book-in-a-day fundraiser back in July or so. [2] The goal was to write, illustrate, print and bind an entire book in a single 12 hour period. Their tale – Cover Story – is a twisty, black-humoured tale of creepy sympathetic magic and zookeeping, pitched at more or less the young adult reader (or perhaps younger teens).

Today the winners were announced, and Cover Story finished with a Highly Commended in the Open category, a runner-up in fundraising and the winner for Best Illustrations. Shauna O’Meara tirelessly slaved over a sketch pad all day to produce a remarkable number of highly polished pictures, many of which featured animals [3]. A well-deserved win!

So, who else has some little success to celebrate or wants to give a shoutout to someone else’s big win? [4]


[1] I am aware that this has never happened to anyone.

[2]I couldn’t spare a whole Saturday to join them, alas, or I would have been there like a shot.

[3] Animals are pretty hard to draw, yo.

[4] Andrea, how’s And All the Stars doing? I’d have called it out above, but I have no sense of the reaction to it yet, except that Jimbo seemed to be enjoying it.


  1. Sales-wise? It’s sold around 150 copies. This is mainly from my established fan-base, with some newbies. Review-wise, my established base like it (some more, some slightly less than Touchstone), and I’ve been getting a few positive reviews from various YA focused book bloggers (because I put it on NetGalley and because my base has been recommending it to people). Sherwood Smith read it and liked it, which was also nice. A positive review went up on The Book Smugglers blog yesterday, and they’re one of the larger book bloggers in the genre – I saw a small related sales surge as a result. And someone nominated it for the Cybils, which I thought was sweet, though tremendously unlikely to go anywhere. [I enter the Aurealis Awards with my books in a “just because” kind of way, but I hold no illusions about winning major awards.]

    Unless you have a massive groundswell of buzz, self-publishers tend to succeed on Amazon “also bought” and bestseller list recommendations. I didn’t get quite enough push out the gate to do more than appear briefly in one of the bestseller categories, and it’ll be a few months before I can really tell where it will settle in terms of regular sales.

    I keep getting review copy requests from people in Romania for some reason.

    So, neither overwhelmingly good nor overwhelmingly bad. Theoretically I should be nose down in the next book, but I needed a mental break, and then got distracted by Guild Wars 2.

    Comment by Andrea — October 17, 2012 @ 5:43 pm

  2. Hey, cheers! Sounds like it is at least getting a little attention, which I gather is pretty hard to come by these days without a marketing budget. I’ll certainly chip in with a review in a week or two (but first I have to get through the unexpectedly massive anthology I started a couple of weeks ago).

    This is, what, nine books for you, not counting Gratuitous Epilogue? That’s becoming a very decent back catalogue. I seem to recall reading a conversation some time ago which suggested that ebook authors have almost a ten-book-minimum before the catalogue begins to develop its own momentum. the assumptions presumably being that (a) the books are good and (b) this isn’t bloviating theory-speculation of the internettiest kind. It will be interesting to see whether Hunting (or whatever else may come next) has some effect on your sales or reviews momentum.

    You definitely deserve a GW2 break.

    Comment by lexifab — October 17, 2012 @ 11:19 pm

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