Wow, I have a treat for you today! Author D.G. (Dawn) Torrens stopped by The Rush Room for a visit, and you know me, the author in training, I wasn’t about to let her leave without peppering her with a few questions about writing first. You see, Dawn is exactly where I would like to be. She’s written three books thus far (2 are currently available on Amazon), which I will link at the end of this post. How did she do it? What were some of the unexpected things that happened on this writers journey? How does she handle social media and marketing? Dawn was gracious enough to answer all these questions in this week’s guest blog.
How I write…
As a relatively new indie author and blogger on the block, I can honestly say finding the time to write is always my biggest problem! With a three year old daughter at part time nursery and a house to run I find I am often writing into the early hours of the morning whilst the rest of the world is sleeping!
I write with music on in the back ground, I need to be totally alone so that I can focus on my story. I will try and imagine being the character that I am writing into my story or that I have already created, this is not always easy at all. I have recently completed my thriller novel “Obsession” this is my debut thriller novel as my previous two books are autobiographical so this was a completely new experience for me. I had to do a fair bit of research for the book to ensure that my crime scenes and police protocol in my story were realistic. What I have learned through writing this story is incredible and has been so exciting. I even paid a visit to my local police station in the name of research!
Depending on what scene I am writing in my story will depend on what music I am playing in the back ground, for instance, a love scene will have me playing “Josh Kumra’s” beautiful echoing voice in the back ground, if it is a murder scene well I will have something fast playing! I find for me personally this helps my writing a lot… Once a story is in my head it has to come out right there and then!
What I didn’t expect as a writer…
The unbelievable support from fellow indie authors has really humbled me, I was not prepared for the kindness, advice and help I have received along my publishing journey over the last 12 months. There truly are some amazing people out there. I also was not prepared for the whole e-book formatting as part of my publishing journey! I am not very good at formatting so I now pay a great formatter £30 to format all my books for me money well spent as far as I am concerned! Until I started self-publishing I never even knew what formatting a book was!
I have also learned that an author that has edited their own work has not had it edited at all, a lesson I learned the hard way with my first book. Which, I may add, has now been re-edited! I pay a great editor to edit my manuscripts for me now too.
So I have literally learned from scratch. I have learned by my own mistakes, as I was a complete novice. So here you are with an edited, formatted, and complete book ready to up load onto Amazon, Smashwords.com, or both, when you have never done it before it can seem quite daunting! There is a lot more to writing a book than writing a book… By the way did I mention that I was not the most technical person in the world! I would say if you a going to upload your book on Smashwords.com then download the smashwords.com guide book, this really helped me with my first book; in fact it was invaluable and also offers a list of great formatters as well as guiding you step by step through the formatting process should you decide to do it yourself. There was so much I was unaware of, things that are important for your book for instance, adding tags to your book before and after you have uploaded it, this makes it easier for people to find your books when they are searching through Amazon.
Social Media and Marketing…
Now this is an area that comes quite naturally to me! My husband is always saying I could sell ice to an Eskimo! Whilst I was writing my first book I set up my own website http://dawnsdaily.com as soon as I had my book cover designed I posted it on my site with a small excerpt from my book. This was to get people interested in my up-coming book and also receive feedback from the excerpt, this was really helpful.
I joined twitter at the same time I set up my website. I tweeted about my book, did the odd guest post about my soon to be published book and joined many book/writers groups on Face-book. All these were great promotional tools which helped me enormously once my first book was released. The great thing about Twitter and Face-book is that there are many indie authors out there all helping each other spread the word about each other’s books. I promote other authors books as much as I promote my own and in turn they very kindly reciprocate.
As soon as my first book was released I set up an author page http://www.facebook.com/dgtorrens another great platform for keeping people up to date on new releases, news about your book and events. This is also a great place for your new readers to interact with you. I interact a lot with my readers on my author page; they often like to ask me questions about my book. I have made many wonderful friends throughout the promotion process of my book and it’s been very humbling indeed.
As an indie author you are head of sales and marketing it’s your responsibility and the success of your book will depend on how you approach this. Many find this process is too much for them, as it takes up so much time and at times for very little reward. I would say keep at it and if it is your dream never give up on it!
I would like to take this opportunity to thank KD for inviting me along here today for which I have the utmost respect. Many thanks it has been a great pleasure…
♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
Thank you Dawn!
Okay folks, you can find Dawn and her books from the links below. Support this remarkable indie author by showing her some love!
FB Author page: http://www.facebook.com/dgtorrens
Follow Dawn on Twitter @torrenstp
Books Available on Amazon: