While I was wrapping up a day of editing, a thought occurred to me; my readers might not understand or like the idea of me editing work that they've already purchased.
I also realized that I completely understood where people of that opinion were coming from. The best I can do to ease that frustration is to explain why these edits are even happening, why they might be necessary.
At the beginning of the year I started writing science fiction, and to be honest I was a little rusty as a writer and I was doing some research as I went. I also didn't have the editor I do now, who has been good enough to go back and do a pass over all my work this year. Even after that was finished, I still wanted to go back and smooth out some rough edges, make sure all the science in my fiction was as spot on as this sort of speculative writing can be, and that there was very little (if any), flat dialog.
As a result, the First Light Chronicles are much improved, and the first two Spinward Fringe books are in much better shape. It's all much more enjoyable to read now that those rough edges have been buffed down.
Until recently I've been lucky and most of my readers aren't ordering print versions of the books, so when a new version comes out they can update their files for free. That softens the blow a great deal. In early 2009 I'll be offering all my books through Amazon.com in print, however. That changes things.
This editing process that I'm wrapping up this weekend will help me determine the best way to move ahead, to make sure that in the future anything I put out there will be the final, no more edits required version. For those of you who don't know, I'm independent and when you're doing this stuff with very few people to work with it takes time to determine the best process for pretty much anything. Thankfully, after a year and this extra edit, I feel that that process is finally down pat.
It may take a couple extra weeks to get each book out there, but at least this way you can be absolutely certain that each release is the final release. You'll see a much higher initial quality each time and that'll just make everything you read with my name on it that much more enjoyable.
As a side note, this edit from the First Light Chronicles Freeground all the way to Spinward Fringe Triton has given me ideas for the future, renewed my enthusiasm for the stories that have not yet been told, and strengthened my feel and tie to each character. In short, I feel a lot better going forward.
Thank you again for following my characters on their journey, to date Spinward Fringe Triton has sold 101 copies. Those sales (which may seem modest to most of you, but in truth are quite decent for an independent Ebook), and your emails tell me that you've enjoyed the journey so far and want more.
In early 2009 I'll provide in grand fashion with Spinward Fringe Frontline. After that I plan on producing more books in the Spinward Fringe series, since there are so many stories waiting to be told.
See you in a day or two when I announce the end of this editing business and some other news.