Wednesday, July 13, 2011

A Week in the Life of a Self-Published Writer

Here's a glimpse into the life of an indie publisher, with the caveat that this is not a representative week but it was my last week of writing-related activity!  

Wednesday, July 6: First NYC reading with Alethea Black and Celine Keating at the Cornelia Street Cafe. The space was packed to standing room only and the crowd was absolutely lovely. Earlier, the Poets & Writers magazine article that we'd written together was published in the July/August issue. P&W was kind enough to give us copies to share with our guests at our reading.
Thursday, July 7:  Evening phone call with a friend to discuss self-publishing as she has a book she wants to publish by September. Discuss whether there's a fit with (sixoneseven) and agree to follow up in a couple of weeks. 
Friday, July 8:  Kindle sales start inexplicably climbing. I google to try to figure out what's behind it, but no luck. Later learn that has included Annie Begins in an email promotion, and the book approaches the Top 100 in the Kindle store.  
Saturday, July 9: Annie breaks through the Top 100 in overall products in the Kindle Store and at its high point is ranked about #59 in literature and fiction and #7 in contemporary romance.  Book party for Wendy Dubow Polins forthcoming indie-published book, Fare Forward.  Interview with Steve Almond at The Nervous Breakdown is published.
Sunday, July 10:  Meeting with prospective author for joining (sixoneseven) and agree on a plan forward. Excited to have a collaborator. Separately, receive first mixed/negative review on Try to develop thicker skin. Realize reviewer makes some good and fair points.
Tuesday, July 12: First book club visit! Many thanks to my friend Laura for hosting and for the others who offered such valuable perspectives. Fascinating to hear their takes on various themes. Invited to San Francisco and Boston book clubs; gladly accepted.

I'm not expecting this all to continue at this pace, but it's been a great week!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

I Knew You'd Be Lovely

I Knew You'd Be LovelyCongratulations to Alethea Black for the debut of her story collection, I Knew You'd Be Lovely. These stories are beautifully crafted, commanding, and a delight to read. I find when I read Alethea's writing it motivates me to write -- she inspires me with her ability to capture small moments and relationships and especially dialogue on the page.

Here is some of the early praise for this wonderful book of thirteen stories:

“This debut reads like a dream, with nary a false note…a well-balanced collection filled with low-key charm and notable talent.” – Kirkus Reviews

“Alethea Black is downright brilliant at capturing the restless striving for a self that we all are feeling in this parlous and unsettling age. I Knew You’d Be Lovely is a splendidly resonant debut by an important young writer.” – Robert Olen Butler, Pulitzer Prize winning author of A Good Scent From a Strange Mountain
“With humor, honesty and wary hope, Alethea Black’s stories capture the pain and power of loving fully—and celebrate life’s small astonishments amid our shared human search for the divine.  I KNEW YOU’D BE LOVELY is thoughtful, entertaining and, ultimately, powerful.” – Daphne Kalotay, author of Russian Winter