JK Mikals

JK Mikals, author of A Chip in Time, has found the self-publishing process enjoyable and educational.  She discusses how she listed all the marketing tasks she wanted to use and which methods ended up on that list.

1. Pretend for a moment I’m a reader looking for my next book.  Pitch me your book in five to ten sentences.

Unkempt, lonely and full of self-pity after her recent divorce, the last thing on Cybele’s agenda is saving the world.  But saving the world is exactly what the Goddess of Time insists that she do.  Dead bodies are multiplying in Xanadu and the surrounding loco-weed filled mountains.  Fertility gods are reluctant to mate.  And worst of all, her only supplier for the Sacred Brine Shrimp so key to all godly technologies (and addictions) has run mad and can no longer supply them.  So when the goddess finds the naïve but well-meaning Cybele through a cosmic computer glitch, she is desperate enough to snatch the girl into the Akashic Records.  There, an appalled Cybele is equipped with special cameras and a crew of ghosts, told to re-arrange certain life sequences for different outcomes and to film her efforts to prevent future rewrites.  She is to give the head fertility god an attitude adjustment and then repair the time warp – she is to save the world.  If you like sci-fi, fantasy and/or romance novels, don’t take it all too seriously and like to laugh, you’ll love this book.

2. What motivated you to become an indie writer?

I’ve always been a do-it-yourselfer.  If I can possibly get my hands dirty with a process, then that’s for me.  If I were a guy and had been born 50 years sooner, I would have done the freighter-around-the-world thing just so I could have that background for writing.  I have really enjoyed learning how to publish and market.

3. Have you been traditionally published? 

Hee.  I guess you could say so.  When I was a freshman in high school my brother found an essay I had written about our grandfather.  I guess Bro thought it was pretty good, because he sent it off to Readers Digest.  And they apparently also thought it was decent, because they published it in The Most Unforgettable Character section and sent him a check for $25.  He never breathed a word until we were both in our forties.  I was also privileged to write and edit a stack of computer instruction books, and a whole lot of software specs.  As to novels, Chip is my first finished child and I obviously chose the indie route.

4. How have you liked self-publishing so far? 

Self-publishing has been loads of fun for me.  I published on Smashwords.com and on Amazon.com and have thoroughly enjoyed the experience.

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Linda Mitchell

Linda Mitchell brings history to life with her collection of Depression-era notes that give a glimpse into the everyday lives of ordinary Americans. She discusses marketing for her niche genre and offers numerous suggestions for getting your work out there.

1. Pretend for a moment I’m a reader looking for my next book.  Pitch me your book in five to ten sentences.

“Dear Miss Schneider, Please Excuse Walter…”  takes you on a journey using a variety of notes, written during the Great Depression years of 1937-1940, as stepping stones.  It was during those years in Newport, KY, that third grade teacher Miss Schneider began collecting the written excuses the mothers of her students sent in as to why their children were absent from school.

These humble, heartfelt and often humorous notes, which give us a glimpse into the lives of these families, have been cloistered in a scrapbook for over 70 years.  Enjoy, as well, the history of Miss Schneider’s life, as pages of photos and memorabilia guide you through the years.

It was a lifetime ago.  Their story has been waiting to be told.

2. What motivated you to become an indie writer?

My book started out as a personal project to preserve the aged and deteriorating notes in my mother’s scrapbook.  I wanted to create a keepsake for my children and grandchildren.  But as it evolved, I knew that it was becoming something that others would enjoy.  So the “project” actually motivated me to become an indie writer.

3. Have you been traditionally published?  Why or why not?

No. This is my first experience publishing.  I felt my book had a specific and perhaps a limited niche.  And because it was about my family I wanted to have complete control of it.

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Andrew G.

Andrew G. is a science buff who turned his love of astrophysics into a sci-fi novel. In this interview he talks about the task of doing research for one’s writing and explains why he made a book trailer to promote his novel.

1. Tell me briefly about your book – what is it about and what motivated you to write it?

My novel, Entropy, is inspired by my love of science, particularly astrophysics.  I read Michio Kaku’s (a co-founder of string theory) book “Hyperspace” when I was a teenager and it changed my life (as well as completely kicked open the door to my narrow perception of what reality is).  After that I was hooked, I bought every other book Mr. Kaku has written and a lot more from other physicists such as Kip S. Thorne, who has done extensive research on wormholes and practical time travel.  While the mathematics are far beyond me, having only taken three calculus courses and a beginner’s differential equations course in college, I am content with marveling at the concepts that are produced year after year in scientific journals and so forth.  This novel is a culmination of my enthusiastic love of these related sciences as well as my fascination with the unknown.  I’ve had the concept in mind since I was young, slowly building a story line in my head for years.  However, it was just recently that I started writing it down into a novel.

2. How have your sales been?

Since I started (which has only been a week), it’s been about a book a day.

3. What has been your experience with traditional publishing?

Hated it.  I tried really hard to have a children’s book published, but no one will even talk to you if you haven’t published before or aren’t represented.  It’s a system that is biased and viciously subjective in my opinion.  I queried 300+ agents and publishers and no one was interested in giving me the time of day…not one.

4. How have you liked self-publishing so far?

Loved it.  It’s easy and more profitable.  I feel that I have so much freedom with my work and I think that even if I do get an offer from a publisher, I would still stick with this.  It’s a little more work, what with editing and marketing myself, but so worth it.

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