Tag Archives | self publishing

Indie Life – Genre hopping and why I’m not.


Going Indie means freedom! Rah! Rah! Shisk boom bah!

That means we can write what ever we want in what ever genre we want and no one is there to tell us no. I appreciate that freedom and the creative control of self-publishing. I do, really.

Of course, authors can do this all with varied results. The switching of genres could be a smashing success or it could result in little cross over of fans and basically rebuilding from scratch. How will it turn out for you? I don’t know.  🙂

I can say that with the first book in a new series releasing this spring, I am extremely happy that it is within my genre of YA contemporary. That means I can cross promote! For me, this is huge when it comes to marketing.

Among many ideas, a month before my new book releases I can put the first chapter in the back of A Spy Like Me and I won’t leave readers scratching their heads.

What do you think about genre hopping? Have you tried it with success?

Check out the Indelibles blog for all the participants!

**This is not to say you shouldn’t try a new genre. I’m all for creative freedom.
***This also is not to say that writing within genre will mean success or immediate sales, though one can hope.


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Showing some book love and a confession.

Along with writing and doing the whole author thing, I’ve run across some fantastic stories. I love to read. I love to find a great story that I feel I haven’t read before. As you most likely know, the more we read or write, the harder it is to find these gems! So I thought I’d share them with you.

But first, on a side note, blogging buddy Sheri Larson posted a review of How To Survive Ancient Spells & Crazy Kings. (Thanks Sheri!) It made me very sad because I love that story but since my publisher closed it has lingered on my hard drive. I’m not sure if and when I’ll self publish it. There are many reasons why–too many to pontificate on here. This blog post is to share with you some book love!

The first one completely surprised me. I was like, right, I am not going to like a big thick book about an alien invasion I don’t care how much buzz it received. Then I happened to be at the library and decided to read just the first page. Pure curiosity. I read the first paragraph and plopped it into the library bag. Loved it! Read this big, thick book with 24 hours.


I should’ve called this blog post 1 post-apocalyptic and 4 fun contemporaries. I’ve been on a fun and flirty reading kick lately and here are some great ones I found.

This teen spy novel was on sale for 2.99 and I grabbed it. Very cute and right up my alley. Not like I’ve written about spies or anything.



Some books I read purely for voice. This story cracked me up! I laughed out loud in parts. I also loved the storytelling. I kept thinking I’d put it down but that never happened. The main character totally sucked me into her story.



 Okay, so superheroes? Eh. But I always like Kelly Oram’s stories. She’s an automatic buy for me, so I tried this one out. Again, the voice and storytelling drew me in and I look forward to reading the sequel.


This last one took me a while to pluck from the shelves. It has a nice cover but it doesn’t begin to cover the depth of this story. It was the most unique premise I’d read in a while. I enjoyed all the different point of views and how the author tackled the story and concept.


Hopefully, there’s something here you might enjoy if your reading tastes are somewhat similar to mine.

Confession: I still haven’t read The Fault in our Stars. I know, I know, everyone has to read it. I know it’s sad and every time I’m at the library I’m just not in the mood for a sad story. Maybe I’ll put it on my 2014 tbr list. Maybe.

That’s it for me. I’m signing off for the holidays. Let me know any good book recs in the comments! Even if it is about aliens. Have a great Christmas!

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Indie Life – Why I revise right away.

Welcome to Indie Life, a monthly post about anything and everything to do with Indie publishing! Please sign up for the Indie Life newsletter for the monthly reminder to post and for a guest post by a fellow Indie Lifer.

Check out Indie Life at the Indelibles to sign up or for the complete list of links.

Indie Life


Why I revise right away.

I realize that revising a finished first draft right away completely goes against the current advice to let your manuscript sit for a month, but that’s not best for me for several reasons.

I write my first drafts in Scrivener and there’s the sidebar where I can type in notes. As I’m writing and realize earlier plot points or chapters need to change, I’ll go to that chapter and on the notes part, I’ll type in what or how I need to rewrite.

When I type The End for the first draft and celebrate with hot cocoa and cookies, I know what needs to happen as far as the basic plot. And when I finally read the whole story on my ereader, I want to know that at that point, it’s the story I want to tell. So usually I go back and make those changes right away, while I’m still in the story and I’m still in the heads of the characters.

Now, after that initial rewrite, which is sometimes a lot and sometimes not, then I like to wait a week or so or longer before I do a read through.

So there you go, the reasons I don’t put my manuscript away for a month, at least not right away.

What do you do after you type The End on your first draft?

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Just a theory on trust – Indie Life!

Welcome to Indie Life – a monthly post about the life and world of self publishing sponsored by the Indelibles. Click on the picture for all the Indie Life links.

And brand new is the Indie Life Newsletter, which will go out once a month to serve as a reminder, but will also include a guest post from an Indie Lifer! So sign up to receive the newsletter next month! Don’t miss out!

At some point we have to trust in ourselves as writers. Honestly? I think it took me longer than other writers to do this – and my trust is still growing.

I think this trust can happen at any point: during your first manuscript, your fifth, or maybe it won’t happen until your tenth. Before that trust happens we might rely on writing crutches whether it be over-editing, over-plotting, an addiction to rewriting, cutting our best scenes or snippets based out of fear. It will be different for everyone.

Even though I’m not doing Nanowrimo, I’m rounding into the last stretch of a first draft of a new series (possibly) and I’m fighting to trust in my muse and let go of my crutches.

With this story, I’m letting go, jumping off the cliff and letting the wind hold me up. I’m trying my hardest to trust in the story, the characters and how they reveal themselves to me. My theory is that our best writing, our best stories will come when we fully trust ourselves and let go.

And fly.

What about you? Do you struggle with this kind of trust?

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The amazing Indie Author Survival Guide is here!

I’ve been reading Susan’s book as she blogged it chapter by chapter. Have you? I know some of you have. This is a unique take on the Indie world, packed with nuggets of wisdom from her experience, for the beginner to the one who needs some encouragement. And don’t we all?
This book is for every author who’s thinking about indie publishing, or has already taken the leap, and wonders why no one told them about the sharks, the life-sucking social media quicksand, or the best way to avoid sales-checking, yellow-spotted fever. This is a guide for the heart as much as the head. And because I promised myself that I wouldn’t write a book about how I made a gazillion dollars publishing ebooks, I would write about the fear: owning it, overcoming it, facing it. From a person who didn’t pursue a creative life for a long time, and then discovered creativity can set you free.Note: gazillion is a technical term, which in this case means something less than a million and more than the average income in my state.

Susan Kaye Quinn is the author of the bestselling Mindajck Trilogy and Debt Collector serial and has been indie publishing since 2011. She’s not an indie rockstar or a breakout success: she’s one of thousands of solidly midlist indie authors making a living with their works. This book is a compilation of her four years of blogging through changes in the publishing industry—updated, revised, and supplemented to be relevant in 2013. It’s a guide to help her writer-friends take their own leaps into the wild (and wonderful) world of indie publishing… and not only survive, but thrive. You can friend her on Facebook or follow her on twitter or check out her blog where she’ll be doing who knows what next.
Grab the Badge for your blog!
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Win the t-shirt!


FAQ About the Guide

Q: What prompted you to write the Guide?
I resisted a long time in putting this together. I had this silly idea I was a fiction writer (which is also true), in spite of spending the last four years blogging consistently about the industry, and especially the changes wrought by indie publishing. It took the goading of several friends, over a period of time, before I realized that the blog was actually non-fiction writing (I can be excessively slow for Ph.D. engineer sometimes). The trigger for blogging the book – revising and updating old posts as well as organizing the content – was seeing writer friend after writer friend take the leap, often after reading something I had posted. And I realized there wasn’t a book out there that addressed the fears as well as the nuts-and-bolts about going indie. I could have just left the Guide on my rinky-dink blog, but I knew the power of Amazon (and other retailers) to connect people to books, and I figured it would help more people this way.

Q: Why should I read a book about indie publishing by Susan Kaye Quinn? I’m pretty sure she’s not a NY Times Bestseller.
I’m not an indie rockstar. I haven’t made the news as one of those “exceptional” breakout indie authors. I’m a solidly midlist indie author, which means I make a living off my works. I’m one of thousands of invisible indie midlist authors who, I believe, are the core of indie publishing, and why it’s changing the industry. The rockstars of indie publishing can inspire and lead, they can use their leverage to break barriers, but they can’t transform the industry on their own. The true change has to come, as it always has, from the grass-roots. I’m part of that grass-roots movement.

Q: Will this Guide help me get rich quick from ebooks?

Q: Will this Guide help me decide if indie publishing is right for me?

Q: What if I’m afraid?
We’re all afraid. Fear is an integral part of being vulnerable in the world by daring to do brave things. Fear stops many people from becoming the full expression of who they are. I won’t tell you not to be afraid in this book – I’ll help you see the fear for what it is, manage it, and not let it stop you from reaching for the amazing things you have ahead of you.

Q: What if I don’t have the first clue how to start with self-publishing?
The Guide is designed to take a first-time-publishing author from the decision to go indie through to writing that second book (and starting the whole process over again). It’s also designed to help indie authors who have already published, but are struggling: either with keeping perspective for the long-term, trying to scale up their businesses from the first book, or just trying not to drown in social media quicksand. My hope is that all my indie author friends will find something worthwhile in it, or pass it on to someone who will. The culture in indie publishing of sharing information is part of what inspired this book in the first place.

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