Letter from the Author #71: To BlackFriday and Christmas | La Marca de Odín

Letter from the Author #71: To BlackFriday and Christmas

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Greetings #MarkedbyOdín, it has been almost two months since the last #LetterfromtheAuthor and before getting into Christmas I wanted to update you on everything we have been doing and what you can expect between now and the end of the year for Mark of Odin.

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The past two months have turned out to be very intense and almost exhausting, having to multiply myself even more than is usual for me. All this, added to everything we are experiencing with Covid-19, has added new layers of stress and wear and tear both professionally and personally. I wish I could say that this is something exclusive to me, but I am very afraid that most of you will also be going through difficult situations.

International Expansion

In October I had the opportunity to attend both the Festival of Licensing and the Frankfurt Book Fair, in their virtual formats. For several weeks I was able to carry out telematic meetings to publicize the Mark of Odin books and their Intellectual Property. It is about sowing seeds to see if they manage to germinate and bear fruit.

For now, thanks to the Frankfurt Book Fair, I am preparing the documentation to see if it is possible to attend the next Festival of Cannes 2021 to publicize the saga. There is brutal competition, but I am going to do my best to get this opportunity.

Now more than ever it is very necessary for us to expand internationally, to minimize our dependence on the Spanish market. As you know, the situation in Spain is not very promising. Since the summer we have been noticing a large contraction in consumption, added to a disproportionate increase in advertising costs, which weakens our position when it comes to achieving the visibility we need to continue growing.

Sometimes I see Audiobooks, everywhere

Due to what I have mentioned above, it is vital to increase our international visibility. One of the best ways to do this is to make The Awakening English audiobook available on Audible, Spotify, Storytell, and all possible external audiobook platforms.

As you know, we finally managed to publish the first book in English, which you can now download completely free from The Community. The next step was to get it distributed on all external platforms. And this is where all my plans have been thrown up a bit.

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First of all, unlike Kobo, where it is already available as well, practically most platforms do not allow you to directly publish audiobooks. They force you to go through a distributor. It took me some time to find one that offered enough guarantees and benefits to work with.

Once insured, the distributor has to meet many technical requirements. In this, Audible is the trendsetter when it comes to standards. And well, although to the ears of a layman, the first edition of the audiobook was correct, it was not correct to be distributed. So, I had to personally get involved in correcting all the details and reissuing.

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I thought about delegating the work, but the person I would have loved to take over was already full of productions and had no time. In the end, I had to do an accelerated “master” in sound design for audiobooks in order to produce each audiobook file perfectly. And at the time of writing these words I'm still doing it. I hope that the enormous number of hours that I am dedicating to it will bear fruit and we can achieve this goal.

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Once this hurdle is overcome, I will resume the production and editing of the bonus chapters in English. After that, I have to decide whether to focus directly on audiobooks in Spanish, or to produce all the contents of Odinpedia in English first.

#BlackFriday with a view towards Christmas

Despite the evolution of these past months, Christmas is here and Black Friday is almost its starting gun. That is why I have decided to significantly increase advertising investment, both in Spain and internationally. In addition, I am working on getting collaborations with interesting people to make the books more known both inside and outside of Spain. An example of this is the recent promotion made by my friend Rubén García.

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I have to say that in the first week of the "campaign" the response has been very positive and there is a lot of movement. The competition is still brutal, but at least we are managing to get our niche. This allows me to face the Christmas campaign in a slightly more positive way than a few weeks ago.

The Pandemic rules

All the current situation, added to the needs in my company, Megapop, have made me have to prioritize my work there, at least for the next few months. We are still working hard towards Haxity final release, hopefully by the end of January. Meanwhile we are organizing different events, like a free weekend on Steam from December 3-6, where I have to put all the meat on the grill.

In the end, as I still cannot clone myself, and at the moment there are no circumstances for me to permanently expand the Mark of Odin team, I have to delay the production of new content and face the final production of Ragnarok. Let's see if vaccines and the introduction of effective economic and social measures really (yes, I sound like a naive science fiction lover) improves the situation.

My illusion continues to be to be able to share with all of you the third book of the saga next year and not delay it any longer. But for this I need a few months of "tranquility", in which I can focus mainly on it. And all this being able to breathe and eat as people say human beings do. I know it's a bummer, that many of you don't stop asking us about the third book, but I assure you that the wait will be worth it. I am the first with the burning desire to share the story of Ragnarok, but we have to arm ourselves with patience. The first goes first.

Even so, in this time we have shared the stories of:

  • Rota: The shady
  • Hilda: The insightful

I still have a few more finalized, but I'm spacing them out so you can have something new every month at least.

Give away the Mark of Odin

Looking ahead to this Christmas, I encourage you to recommend our Collector's Pack, even more now that it also includes audiobooks. Help us to become the gift of this year and that we can receive a lot of new readers, with whom we can continue to grow this dream. In the end, word of mouth is the most effective system to make ourselves known.

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Therefore, I encourage you to continue sharing your impressions of the books, not only in the Opinions section, but also on external platforms such as Amazon, Google Play, Apple, Kobo, Lektu or Goodreads. Why? Having a good evaluation and opinions there helps us a lot to attract new readers. Each new #MarkedbyOdin here is a step forward to reach the next phase. And yes, I am also very excited to have you on Discord so that we can unite our community more and share everything you want about the books or everything that may interest you. Thank you!

Remember, everything is connected.

Xavier Marcé

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