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Progress Report 2022 Week 19

Summer 2022. That’s the timeframe I set for publishing Evolution’s Hand Book 1: Executive Action. We’re into the second week of May. How’s that date looking? How about the changes I planned to make to the audience for the e-mail list’s Facebook ad? Did my clicks go through the root — or loiter in the basement? And dare we even talk about the ProWritingAid pass of Evolution’s Hand Book 2: Dying Breath? Let’s take a look after we review the week’s numbers.

Progress Report 2022 Week 19 By the Numbers

No change in the word count for book 3, but that’s by design. What’s with the 37 words written this week?

Yes, I only wrote a net of 37 words this week. I also deleted a ton. Apparently, ProWritingAid noticed I use “that” way too often. The more I use ProWritingAid, the more I like it, despite its apparently low opinion of my writing. At the risk of addressing the points I brought up in the opening out of order, yes: I finished the ProWritingAid pass for Dying Breath.

So why didn’t the word count for Evolution’s Hand Book 3: Primary Target go up? I’ll talk about that in a moment. But overall, the week felt productive. No Real Life Family Events (RLFEs) or Real Life Work Events (RLWEs). That wasn’t only good for my productivity. It was good for my family and work lives!

Facebook Giveth… Sometimes

In my post from last week, I shared some metrics from my first three Facebook ads. My goal last week was to focus my audience to North America and Canada, which I accomplished. I then turned the same ad graphic and ad copy as my second and third ads. The goal was to change just one thing, which was the audience. I’m trying to determine what is holding back the number of clicks. Then, potentially, I wanted to invest a little more in the ad.

Well, that fourth ad has concluded. Here’s how it compared to the previous three:

AdReachImpressionsClicksCost
First Ad9,70621,235116$32.70
Second Ad86,976236,912655$32.46
Third Ad 24,37647,917218$13.93
Fourth Ad (the latest)1,2861,67029$46.35

Huh. It turned out to be the most expensive ad with, by far, the lowest number of clicks. I’ll be honest: This is frustrating. I started my anime review site years ago, in part, to prototype this kind of thing. I ran several Facebook ads back then until I thought I had a good understanding. The first three ads continued that illusion. The results of the fourth, though, perplex me.

I’ve talked to some social media experts, and they are scratching their heads, too. I’m not displeased with the size of my e-mail list, so if I have to launch with just it, I’ll launch. It won’t delay the launch date. Still, I don’t like unknowns — especially unknowns that impact my plans.

Speaking of the Executive Action’s Launch Date

After seeing the improvements ProWritingAid helped me make to Dying Breath, I started to wonder. Would it improve Executive Action? I mean, I edited Executive Action three times myself, and I paid two independent professional proofreaders to comb through it. I knew there would still be typos and what not ProWritingAid could not find. But would it be worth the time investment? After all, it’ll take between one and two weeks to complete. That’s time I could be writing Primary Target.

I had to summon my courage. I’m feeling the stirrings of launch fever, so I really didn’t want to slow down. But I want my readers to have the best experience possible. So, I ran the first four chapters through ProWritingAid.

I’ll be you can guess what I found.

Yep. It found material errors, any one of which might kick a reader out of their suspension of disbelief. I’m going to push the entire manuscript through ProWritingAid. So far, I’ve finished twenty-two chapters, and it’s moving briskly. And that’s why I didn’t write anything in Primary Target.

Is Dying Breath Just Sitting Around?

I’ve finished the second draft and a full ProWritingAid pass of Dying Breath. For Executive Action, the next step had been a developmental edit. Executive Action was the first novel I’d written in about thirty years. I wanted to know if my plotting and pacing were even close to ready for prime time. That first developmental edit gave me the info I needed to skip it for Dying Breath.

Instead, I’m sending it out to two beta readers. They’re from Fiverr, which is slowly starting to impress me. Both beta readers should finish by the end of May. After the manuscripts come back, I’ll figure out how long to let Dying Breath sit before I go through it once more to incorporate the beta reading results and as a final edit. I’ll probably also buy a cover when it comes back.

The bottom line is that I actually completed all three goals I set for the week! I like that.

Goals for the Week in Progress Report 2022 Week 19

  1. Finish Executive Action’s ProWritingAid pass
  2. Prep Executive Action for publishing; that’ll include back-matter and other formatting considerations
  3. Send out the second newsletter to my e-mail list
  4. Go back through the plot braiding worksheet for Primary Target and incorporate my notes from Dying Breath’s second draft; as a stretch objective, begin writing it again

What Do You Think?

How do you find beta readers? Do you work with Advanced Reader Copy websites? If you have, I’d love to hear about your experience in the comments! Or just comment randomly — that works, too!

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