Saturday, December 26, 2020

Mandala prints

I started drawing mandalas in February 2014. I sold them on eBay that year—I think I sold five or six—then stopped selling them and instead just kept them for myself, thinking that it would be nice to publish a book of them, or to sell prints of them, at some point.

On November 10, I started selling prints. I've enjoyed selling prints. It feels more satisfying and less stressful than some other methods of earning money I've tried, like selling writing on Patreon, which I tried earlier this year and abandoned after four posts. 

Mandala prints
Prints arranged in order of popularity. Key for the order is in lower-right.
I've sold 128 prints:

32—numbers mandala 

30—water mandala

27—mandala 13 

26—mandala 25

7—Dudu mandala 

4—mandala 12

2—cannabis mandala

0—mandala 8

Lower sales of Dudu mandala, mandala 12, cannabis mandala, and mandala 8 are due, at least partially, to those being added later. I added Dudu mandala and mandala 12 on November 30, and cannabis mandala and mandala 8 on December 11. 

It seems like people like to buy prints without faces on them, besides maybe Dudu's face. If I had started selling them all at the same time, maybe Dudu mandala would be as popular as the first four.

International orders have been from United Kingdom (7), Germany (4), Canada (3), Chile, Spain, Australia, France, Ireland, Sweden. No orders from Asia or Africa yet.

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

Leave Society's "first pass"

After a book is copy-edited and the author goes through the copy-edits, accepting or rejecting them while making more edits, the publisher implements the edits and lays out the book and sends it back to the author in a file called "first pass." Or at least this is what has happened with most of my books.

I blogged about copy-edits around two months ago. My publisher sent me the copy-edited draft of my novel on October 23. I went through the edits on the computer on October 26, 27, and 28. Then I printed the draft and edited it by hand and implemented my edits to the MSWord file over 9 days, working an average of 4 hours per day, until the day it was due, November 6, when I turned it in.

On December 2, I got the laid-out PDF "first pass" file of my novel. It had all the edits I'd accepted and/or made in the copy-edited draft. It was 353 pages. I like the layout. It looks like this:

I printed it and worked on it an average of 3.5 hours a day for 8 days, from December 7 to 14, hand-editing and implementing the edits for 7 days and then, on the 8th day, reviewing the edits—299 of them—on the computer screen, in Adobe Reader, reversing and tweaking some edits, for a final of 288 edits. The edits were tiny and small. I added around 15 paragraph breaks, fixed some things that weren't fixed or were missed in copy-edits (like unitalicizing foreign words), deleted around 150 words, added some words for clarity purposes, and changed some things back that I'd changed in previous drafts.

On the 6th and 7th days, also, I went through the edits with my girlfriend, who is an editor, getting her feedback. She helped me to not overdo it when deleting words for the purpose, in part, of minimizing having lines with just one word on it—"orphans," these seem to be called. I feel satisfied getting rid of "orphans," partly because I like editing down, which almost always seems good, but I know it can be overdone. An example of this that I feel satisfied about and doesn't seem overdone to me:

Gazelles seem kind of similar to deer, and there were already enough animals listed, I felt.

An example of where I added a paragraph break:

Some words/phrases/sentences I deleted:

-which holistic dentists had been removing from mouths for decades
-since the eighties
-as an immaterial being
-and focus
-and so habitually moved carefuler than necessary
-somewhat vaguely, Li would realize years later, rereading the agreement emails
-in the nineties
-He’d finished five of its eleven chapters.
-in 1924 and 1926
-It was closer than New York to Taiwan.
-observing pigeons and squirrels
-couscous, eggplant, shiso, and 
-cramps and
-on his floor
-covering it with probiotic capsules
-Maybe neither of them was.
-consideration or
-he knew
-the place where he felt most alienated, beleaguered, and insane

Today was my 9th day working on "first pass." I checked four things that I still felt unsure about, then sent the file to my publisher. Due in part to my planning (editing around 50 pages a day, leaving two days to review), going through "first pass" has been a calm, enjoyable experience. 

My novel seems 0.02 percent to 0.4 percent (seems hard to estimate) improved to me now, after "first pass." It will be out on August 3, 2021. It can be added on Goodreads.