Reflecting on 2021

Welcome to my final Readerly Ramblings of 2021, a post I’ve written to take a book-related reflection on the last year and to thank you for your support over it. As I often say, an author, without readers, is nothing.

2021 has been an amazing second year in my author career.  The pandemic has been tough for all of us but the silver lining in the cloud for me is the amount of time I’ve been able to devote to my writing and all the associated business, marketing, etc that accompanies it.

I truly am living my dream – being a full time author is all I’ve ever wanted to be. 

Here’s how you’ve supported me:

Buying my books! 

Book sales are my bread and butter.  Whilst my books are selling, I can keep writing more!

I’ve released four psychological thrillers in 2021, as follows:

The Yorkshire Dipper (What would you risk to bring the truth to the surface?)

Hit and Run (He was dead before she really knew him.)

The Hen Party (First there were ten. Then there were nine.)

Last Christmas (For who?)

And as a thank you for your support, I’ve a signed copy of each to give away.  Enter the draw by clicking here before 19th December.

 

If you click on the link after this date, the link will take you to a draw for a signed copy of my next book, Drowned Voices, which is due out early in 2022.

In 2021, I’ve also released ‘The Brother in Law,’ a free novella you can download by joining my keep in touch list, and ‘A Life for a Life,’ a free novella available to all on Amazon.

Spreading the Word

The greatest seller of anything is word of mouth. As a reader, I’m much more likely to buy a book if a fellow reader has recommended it to me.  Many of you have told me that you’ve recommended my books to a friend, family member or at your book club, and to hear this always makes my day.

Writing Reviews

Reviews offer social proof that something is worth buying.  I certainly keep my prices to a minimum, but what I’m asking of potential readers is even more valuable than money. Time.  Hours and hours of time. So when you write a positive review, it offers validation to a reader that my work is worth investing in.

All my books (apart from Last Christmas) are available in audio and I have free codes available for UK and US Audible customers.  Because Audible reviews are much slower to come by than those on Amazon, I love to give the free codes out to my regular readers first. Let me know if you’d like one, for which book and which country.

Joining my Keep in Touch List or Social Media

What really keeps me going on the tougher days is the relationships I have found with you, my reader. The messages, the feedback, the excitement when I announce something.  As I say in so many of my monthly  ‘keep in touch’ letters, (link to join above,) hearing from you always makes my day.

I’ve recently gone onto GoodReads and TikTok. I’m particularly enjoying TikTok, finding silly aspects of myself I didn’t know existed!

You can also join me on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

With all these social media channels, it’s a wonder I find the time to write!

 Joining my Advance Reader Team

This is a Facebook group of avid readers who love to be the FIRST readers of my books when they are in the final stages of production. They offer feedback on the story and help me catch any last-minute pesky typos. I don’t know what I would do without them! Click here if you're interested in joining.

So that's a summary on why I'm so grateful to you! And now on to letting you know what I'm up to at the moment...

What I am reading:

‘I Let You Go’ by Clare Mackintosh. I’m into the final chapters of what has been an awesome psychological thriller so far. It’s full of twists and we all love those, don’t we?

What I am writing:

The first draft of Emergence.  I switched from another book to make a start on this one instead.  Emergence (Book 3) will be the third book in a trilogy (The Dark Water Series,) to accompany The Yorkshire Dipper  (Book1) and Drowned Voices (Book 2 - 1.2.22) and it made sense for me to begin this whilst the characters were still fresh in my mind.

As a self-professed standalone author, writing a trilogy has pushed me out of my comfort zone but I’m very happy with the result!

What I am editing

Drowned Voices is now in its final stages and is out with my Advance Reader Team.  I am waiting with bated breath for their verdicts. (Although some lovely ones have come in so far!)

Quote of the month

All I can say is bring on 2022!  In my next blog post, I’ll tell you about everything I have planned.

In the meantime, all that’s left to say is another huge thank you for your support.  Have a wonderful Christmas and I hope you get lots of new and exciting books to read!

With best wishes

 

Maria

PS This blog post is also available as a video on YouTube

 

 

 

 

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