I live in Bardstown, Kentucky. It’s the bourbon capitol of the world (according to the signs). It’s also on the Bourbon Trail. From time to time, I catch a whiff from one of the distilleries. Ironically, I don’t drink.
When my Kindle Scout campaign ended, I entered the limbo phase. No, not dancing lower and lower under a pole. Limbo as in purgatory. As a teetotalling bourbon capitol resident, I couldn’t even drink away the pain and suffering. I stayed perfectly sober while wailing and gnashing my teeth.
I’m exaggerating. A little.
I got the news on the twelfth day after the campaign ended. Take the Body and Run was selected for publication! Yay!
Here’s the announcement I received on June 14, 2016, around noon:
Now for the timeline.
Sunday, May 1
Submitted the manuscript, cover, description, etc., through the online process.
Monday, May 2
My manuscript was chosen for a campaign.
Wednesday, May 4
My campaign was launched. I hoped that “The Force” was with me. See How I Scored a Kindle Press Publishing Contract, Part Two, for my marketing efforts.
Thursday, June 2
My campaign ended at midnight. Obsessive checking of emails and Kindle Scout page began.
Tuesday, June 14
Announcement the book had been selected. The Kindle Scout email included details like I had 30 days to submit the final manuscript, cover, and blurb.
Check out Take the Body and Run and other selected titles:
Wednesday, June 15
My thank you note went out those who nominated the book.
As you can infer from the wording, I really didn’t think I’d get the contract.
“Hello! Thank you so much for supporting Take the Body and Run by nominating it. It’s readers like you who inspire me to keep writing. If you’d like to see what happens next with Macey’s story, please check in on my website: http://jadaryker.com/ Thanks again! Jada”
Friday, June 17
Call with Kindle Scout representative. Megan was very nice, and explained what I should expect from the process.
Sunday, June 19
I had 30 days to submit the final manuscript. I made a deal with myself: no obsessive picking through the manuscript or rewriting it for 30 days – just send it!
Submitted Take the Body and Run manuscript, after I read through it one last time.
I also verified the cover was ready to go.
Finally, I expanded the blurb a bit from the original campaign description.
Monday, June 20
Kindle Scout review team approved the updated manuscript, same cover, and revised book details.
The email also included information about the advance: “If this is the first time you’ve had a book selected by Kindle Press, you should receive an email from Amazon Payee Central within the next 7 business days that asks you to provide your banking and tax information through our secure online portal. Providing this information will take a little time on your end, but as soon as we have you all set up, we’ll begin processing your advance payment. The $1,500 advance is issued within 30 days of our receiving your complete payment information.”
Monday, June 20 (later that day)
We’re pleased to let you know that editorial work on your Kindle Press manuscript Take the Body and Run has begun. An editor will review your manuscript using the Microsoft Word Track Changes feature and provide recommendations.
When the editor has completed work on your manuscript, we’ll send you another e-mail letting you know your manuscript is ready for review, along with a link so you can download your manuscript, review all the editorial suggestions, and decide which changes you’d like to make before submitting your edited document to the Kindle Scout/Kindle Press team.
Your manuscript should be ready for you to review by July 8, 2016.
If you have any questions regarding the editorial process or suggestions made for your manuscript, please contact us.
Thanks for being a part of Kindle Press!
Your editorial team
Monday, June 20 (right after above)
Received the email from Amazon Payee Central for banking/tax information.
Completed the Kindle Scout survey. Great job, team!
Friday, July 8
As you saw from the email, July 8 was the target date for me to receive the edited document by this date. I actually received it two days early.
You have as much time as you need to review the edits. Kindle Press has found that authors typically need one week, but more time is completely fine. They want you to take the time you need to get your book ready to put its best foot forward.
Here’s an excerpt from my letter from the editor:
The manuscript is in very good shape at this point. The writing is lively and sharp, the story is developed for the genre, and the text itself is very clean from a copyediting standpoint. I can tell that a good editor has seen this manuscript; the text is polished in a way that you rarely see at this stage . . .
You (and Macey) have a great voice, and you have some fantastic observations and turns of phrase. . . I laughed out loud. The story moves briskly, and the characters are distinctive and entertaining.
The story is suspenseful and flows well..
Your descriptions of characters are terrific, and all of them are distinctive. You have some great weirdos and nut jobs in here!
Tone and Style
You perfectly capture the tone of a goofy thriller through your writing, which is brisk, witty, and entertaining.
I hope my edits and comments are valuable in helping the manuscript achieve your publishing goals. Good luck in your revision, and I wish you all the best for this manuscript and future books.
—Kelly, Kindle Scout Editor
My Editing Process
My editing experience may help those of you in the process. Up until I received my above letter, I’d wanted to get my book out there as soon as possible. I thought it was great as is. Plus, I had an irrational fear that the nominators will forget about the book.
The editor made some plot suggestions, including one I was saving for the next book. I may have been more receptive because she said great things about my book. Comments above like “lively, sharp, entertaining, polished, and a great voice” made me think she must be very smart 😉
I ended up adding about 5,100 words of new text. I was paranoid about adding any typos or mistakes. I asked if I could get another review by Kelly. The answer was no, just one was the limit. I said I’d pay for the second edit, if it wasn’t hideously expensive (like not more than the $1,500 advance). The representative gave me the contact information for Kelly’s boss.
Get this. The manager said they’d consider the new text as part of the original edit. It didn’t cost me a penny, and the turnaround time was pretty fast. And Kelly loved the added text.
Sunday, August 21
My vacation to Fairbanks, my busy full-time (plus) job and 3-hour daily commute, commitment to weekend hiking with my husband, sending through Createspace hard copies with the new text for my betas (lovely retired ladies who don’t own computers), turnaround time for the second edit, etc., meant that 5.5 weeks elapsed between getting the original edits and uploading my final document on Sunday, August 21.
Is the delay worth it? I think I have a better quality book to offer readers…so yeah.
Release on Amazon
The team completes the conversion of the manuscript.
This process takes one to two weeks.
Usually, it’s ten days on the following Monday that the preorder page goes up. Then, fifteen days on the following Tuesday it goes live.
The Scouts get access to download their free books at this point in time.
Hopefully, they will post early reviews.
Amazon will add the book to their New Releases and add to carousels like New Mysteries.
Also, Amazon will send targeted emails to thousands of customer they think are mostly likely to enjoy the book.
Ninety Days from Launch
Amazon will send out emails to their readers most likely to purchase the book.
In general, the book is eligible for the first price promotion after ninety days, and then every subsequent ninety days.
The book may be eligible for Kindle Daily deals, Kindle Fire deals, month-long price promotions, etc.
To be continued . . .
I’ll post more information once my book launches. As of today, the book has not yet been posted on Amazon.
Now, a word from our sponsor (me).
My Self-Published Books: Shaken, Not Stirred
A Pink Zombie, with a Mist, and Gimlet are available on Amazon in electronic and paperback formats.
Shaken, Not Stirred
A Pink Zombie, with a Mist
Anthropologist Olivia West is determined to find her missing best friend. As children, she and Emma Martin wandered into Heaven’s Bottom, an isolated Kentucky community cut off by the Ohio River and mountainous terrain. The two women share strange memories of the traumatic experience. Emma is convinced they witnessed a blood sacrifice and moon magic, surrounded by zombies. As a scientist, Olivia believes there’s a logical explanation.
Detective Steven Lewis pursues his own investigation of the mysterious town. A social worker, his wife fought her way into The Bottom to investigate suspected child abuse. She didn’t make it out alive. Haunted by grief and regret, Steven is obsessed with finding her killer. He’s convinced the murderer is hiding in the wild forest, camouflaged by the swirling mist.
Olivia and Steven enter into an uneasy partnership to find Emma and solve his wife’s brutal murder. They contact Sheriff Noah McCracken, who holds the local law enforcement role that’s been passed down through his family for centuries. Like his ancestors, the sheriff ignores the chilling events in Heaven’s Bottom.
Can Olivia and Steven convince Noah to “release the McCracken” in time to save their lives?
SPECIAL BONUS: As a reader appreciation gift, “The Hand of Karma” mystery/horror short story is included FREE at the end of the book.
Gimlet Short Story Collection
Jada Ryker’s collected short stories run the gamut from mystery to horror to science fiction. The stories include “Gimlet,” “As the Crow Flies,” “Cross to Bear,” “An Alien Act of Honor,” “Winner Takes All,” “Dead Eye,” “The Hand of Karma,” and “Driving Miss Daisy’s Cattle.”
In “Gimlet,” Juneau and Coldwell pose as patients in a mental hospital to solve a paranormal mystery. Fellow patient Iris, notorious for both her séances and her police record, claims she’s in touch with the spirits who have the answers to the puzzle. Will her supernatural connections help Juneau and Coldwell solve the mystery, or lead to a one-way trip to the morgue?
In “As the Crow Flies,” Fresna is a middle-aged nursing assistant toiling in a nursing home. She likes Mr. Corvis, an eccentric resident. When odd things happen to Fresna, Mr. Corvis is in the vicinity.
Tina returns to her rural Kentucky home to attend her hard-living and hard-drinking brother’s funeral in “A Cross to Bear.” She reconnects with Chris, her childhood friend’s handsome brother. Tina has to contend with her troubled relationship with her father, her feelings for Chris . . . and a malevolent watcher.
Mae Rue is on the verge of being arrested for her husband’s brutal murder. An extraterrestrial family invades her grief, seeking to right an old wrong. Mae Rue learns there are many facets to honor, including “An Alien Act of Honor.”
After her emotionally distant father Billy Ray emerges from a coma with an extraordinary story, Marisa explores her challenging relationship with him. Alex, Marisa’s friend from childhood and possibly more today, provides his unconventional support. In “Winner Takes All,” Marisa and her father learn how a second chance impacts them both.
In “Dead Eye,” Alex takes Marisa to an unusual Halloween party in an isolated Kentucky community . . . with a murderer ready with deadly tricks, rather than treats.
In “The Hand of Karma,” Jessamine, mourning her mother’s sudden death, becomes trapped in a funeral home’s cellar with a monster from her past.
In “Driving Miss Daisy’s Cattle,” Lieutenant Camden finds out that viral videos of a dead bull rider, with a rodeo clown bent over him, don’t tell the whole story. With a brand-new officer dogging his footsteps, Cam has to solve the mystery.