Friday, February 1, 2013

Finishing the Draft of Operation Bedlam

I've taken today off from work and rented a seat at a co-working space here in Boston in order to finish the first draft of COMMANDO: Operation Bedlam. It's taken me longer than I'd liked to write this second Commando novel, but there was a lot going on at the end of 2012, including the wrap-up of my graduate degree and taking on some new responsibilities at work. Still, this morning I'm in the home stretch, the last 6-8,000 words. If I don't actually finish it today, I'll wrap it up this weekend, and hope to begin the editing process next week.

In the beginning, I was unsure how to followup Arrowhead. I knew I wanted a darker, harder-edged story, while still maintaining the overall "cinematic" spirit of what I envision for the series. I also needed to find a way to shift the focus of the series a bit, as well as plant the seeds for many more spin-off stories, like The Train to Calais. For the most part, I think I succeeded, although as always, the final judge of success or failure will be my readers.

January was a banner month for my sales in general and Arrowhead in particular. I sold 135 ebook copies in the US and UK, and six paperbacks. Might not sound like much, but that's close to double my sales last month, and I lay a lot of that success at the feet of Ander Plana, my cover artist. I think the new cover is great, and really helps to define the book as, to paraphrase one reader, "a British Commando Comics story in prose form". I'm hoping to beat those numbers in February.

Also, for the first time, I exceeded 200 ebook sales overall, with 215 total sales and KOLL borrows. Again, might not sound like much to some, but that's a good 30% bump from last month. The Train to Calais sold over 50 copies, surprising since you can get it for free with the new revised edition of Arrowhead, but I imagine people are buying it who read either the earlier edition, or they just found the story interesting on its own. I even sold a handful of Nanok copies, again thanks to Ander's great covers. I hadn't sold a single copy in the last two months of 2012. Although I love the story, it is easily my worst-selling title, but with a little luck and the great new cover, I'm hoping that changes.

All right, enough blogging. Time to lock back the bolts on some machine pistols, pull the pins on some grenades, slap home some full magazines, and start killin' Nazis.


Sean McLachlan said...

Go for it!!!

Hank Brown said...

This series is off to a good start. And I agree--the cover really helps buyers guess what flavor of fiction they're getting.

Anonymous said...

Huge congrats, Jack! (On both the sales and the completion of yet another novel.)

I'm finishing up Killer Instincts now -- in the final stretch and still loving every second of it.

Jack Badelaire said...

Thanks for all the well-wishing, guys!