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Saturday, August 3, 2013

Content Counts, Whomever Publishes It In Whatever Format


If you want to publish a book, you have many options, including the following:

-          Getting a literary agent to sell it to a publisher
-          Self-publishing as print-on-demand
-          Self-publishing as an e-book
-          Self-publishing a short print run as a hardcover, or trade paperback, or mass market paperback
-          Making it available in installments or serialized pieces, perhaps on a blog or as an app
-          You can get a publisher to produce your book and then agree to buy a certain number of copies from them

You can choose other mediums or augment the e-version with:

-          Audio
-          Video
-          Photos
-          Illustrations

You can sell the translation rights to scores of countries.  In short, your book could be anything you want it to be, published however, wherever, and whenever you like.  The publishing process has never been as easy, as cheap, or as diversified as it is now.  But no matter how you publish what you created, what still counts is content.  Quality materials that are timely, useful, interesting and unique will always be craved.

You can publish a book with:

-          A university or academic press
-          A trade publisher
-          A non-profit or professional group
-          A small press
-          The Big Six: Harper Collins, Macmillan, Penguin, Random House, Simon & Schuster, Grand Central

Books should be written from the heart, from the creative mind, from experience.  They should move readers and stir their passions, hopes, and dreams.  Writers should inspire, inform, enlighten or educate.  They should also entertain us.  But they must also be written with the consumer in mind.  For books to sell well, and to gain media attention, they will need a hook.  Every book has a headline in it.  When you write, think of how to support whatever that headline is  

Content still counts -- no matter how or who publishes it.



Interview With Author Verity Marshall

What type of books do you write? In another incarnation, I write short stories. Nice little animal stories, with innocent, happy-endings. ‘Hard Money-Naked Truth’ is a major departure from my well-worn and familiar genre. Growing up in the quintessential, middle class Australian family, without the trials, and tribulations of many writers, I have no issue to examine, or translate into my work. Having been privately educated, and marring at a young age, I have lived a somewhat protected and insular life. Conversations with a friend, who has been living a diametrically opposite lifestyle, stirred my imagination.  Thus began a curiosity with all dysfunctional behaviours, fortunately our society abounds with dysfunction! Therefore, it was only a matter of paying attention, and keeping a record of the activities of others, to find inspiration for my latest book.

What is your newest book about? “HARD MONEY - The naked truth behind the red light”, is a 'fly-on-the-wall' peek at the behind-the-scene activities of authentic Sydney prostitutes and their clients - all employed/patronising the brothel described at the time of research.
The book is a collection of graphically written short stories (with humorous undertones), facts, observations, and anecdotes. The information gleaned from the sex workers and their clients via interviews and simple surveys, has been interwoven with fiction - the real and fake names have been changed to protect 'the-not-so-innocent' - and crafted into the scandalous short stories.

What inspired you to write it? During the 1980s, a childhood friend inherited a suburban brothel from her former husband. After listening for many years to her wild and bizarre tales, I decided to chronicle the conversations and use them as the inspiration for Hard Money.
My friend arranged for me to speak with a ‘madam’ well known to her, Miss Lulu. The madam’s immediate enthusiasm for the project enabled me to tap into a wealth of material. I was invited to sit in the girl’s lounge room to hear the gossip and assigned a small office area for interviews and surveys.

The pivotal character of Hard Money is the madam of the brothel, Miss Lulu, who takes an unusual approach to running a business notorious for its use of heavy-handed tactics. Miss
Lulu is a kind and caring employer who often puts her employees’ happiness and harmony before profit making. Her co-stars in this theatre of social deviancy are an eclectic group of women who, during their working day, accept a reality of life that most people prefer to ignore.

The story The Girls’ Room features candid conversations between the prostitutes while they’re discussing customers. Other stories include recounts of the physical machinations the workers experience during bookings and their emotional reactions to them.
Each story is graphically recounted and has a humorous undertone. In crafting the commentary, I’ve attempted to give readers an insight into the motives of both sex workers and their clients. The stories range from titillating to the weird and comical. The characters have a diverse range of personalities, moral beliefs, and ethnicities, and are far from stereotypical. Throughout the book are ‘factual inserts’ of interesting statistics and general observations of the people I interviewed. I include many happy endings, not always the expected one!

What is the writing process like for you? For me it is a compulsive mechanism, although definitely a pleasurable one!

What did you do before you became an author? I was previously involved with technical writing, ghost writing, along with poetry, children’s stories and short stories for magazines.

How does it feel to be a published author? As an Indie author it mostly feels like a lot of hard work!

Any advice for struggling writers? Write about subjects that interest you personally, or about which you have comprehensive information – in other words…know you’re subject….research, research, research!

Where do you see book publishing heading? With the recent success of Indie publishing, I see a continued growth in both traditional and independent publishing, which is exciting and encouraging for all writers.  




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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer, the nation’s largest book promoter. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2013

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