Back in July, I posted an interview with fellow indie author Jay Lemming.  Jay has a terrific ongoing project simply called “Survey: Indie Writers of Literary Fiction.” In his survey, he asks fellow lit fiction authors about one of their novels, and in particular, what great theme they treat in the novel. He also asks how they decided to treat the theme.

As part of the process of submitting the questionnaire, the author can then choose to be interviewed for Jay’s online author roundup. Who wouldn’t want that kind of publicity? And of course, Jay’s interview allows the author to expand on the above mentioned topic while answering questions like Did your perspective on the theme change as you wrote the story? and Did you find yourself less in control of your narrative than you expected? Interesting stuff indeed. (You can find Jay’s interview with me about my novel Jana here.)

This might all sound like arcane shop talk for authors, but nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, this type of author roundup is a great way to get authors to not only read each other’s work, but also to cross-promote each other. And it’s reader-friendly, too: after all, what better way to get to know something about a book you might want to read than an interview with the author about that particular book?

Best of all, the survey process gets the reader/author thinking about literary fiction the way we did back in our university days: themes like The Individual vs. Society, and The Nature of Reality, which, let’s face it, we don’t often go around thinking about.

Thanks to Jay’s work, I’ve got a whole new list of current authors to read, including Dan Holloway, Rohan Quine, and Rosaline Riley, just to name a few. After emailing back and forth with Jay about our books, and seeing his posts about his own novel, Billy Maddox Takes His Shot, I decided to buy a copy and give it a read. It’s great stuff, and well worth picking up.

These types of cross-promotional efforts are not just worthwhile marketing ventures for indie writers. They also represent a great way to find a new favorite author!

book-building

Book-Building 101

This week's post is called Book-Building 101 because I want to provide my fellow indie authors a little info on the mechanics of putting out a completed book. And I'm not talking about plot, structure, or basics like editing or proofreading. I'm talking about the...
stars

Working on Novels

This week I’m back to blogging about the love of my life – no, not my lovely wife, Sunny, although I must admit she’s the true love of my life. I mean I’m blogging about my fiction again. People know me for a few different things: author, speaker, publisher. And since...
launch team

Turning a Street Team Into a Launch Team

If you're reading this blog post in April or May of 2019, you probably already know that my fourth novel, Whizzers, will come out later this year. I'm working on launch ideas of all sorts, and the launch itself is likely going to be late July. For the uninitiated,...

Feeling A Little Bit Better

There's an old, very bad joke that goes something like this: It was Christmas, and everyone was feeling merry; so Mary went home. Then everyone jumped for joy, but Joy jumped out the window. I know those only work when spoken aloud, and in the #MeToo era, it's a...

It’s A Small World After All

Most of my blog posts are related in one way or another to the business of being an author - expanding your author platform, improving your book marketing, and so on - and not strictly self-promotional. However, every once in a while, I've got a radio interview or...
recovery

Recovery 202? Long-Term Sobriety Is Possible

So, the plan for today was to write a post about recovery. Unfortunately, I’m in a different kind of recovery mode today—recovering from a sinus infection. What that means for you, the reader, is I’m going to keep this short. Really short. I took my last drink 30...
team

Come Join My Book Launch Team!

A few months ago, I wrote a blog about book launches where I introduced the subtle difference between a launch team and a street team. Simply stated, there’s usually plenty of overlap, but a launch team may include people not part of your street team – vendors, people...

Short Story Contest Part II

Last week, I launched a short story contest here on my blog as part of a major national promotion. To recap: this is not a call for submissions; I'm serializing a short story in anticipation of my upcoming release of a short collection. Here's how it works: read it...
author

Are Authors Typically Obsessive-Compulsive?

Recently I’ve noticed a trend in author blogs toward the confessional. After all, no one wants to read about your characters all the time, and God knows that readers don’t want to read about marketing. They want to know something about you. Happy to oblige. Although...
creativity

Can Creativity Be Taught?

Have you ever thought about writing a book? Have you written a book? If the answer to the first question is Yes, but the answer to the second question is No, there might be a few reasons for this. One reason I frequently hear from potential ghostwriting clients is,...