Once upon a time authors wrote books, did book signings and a few media interviews and went back to writing the next book and left any other promotion to their publisher. Times sure have changed. Now we have to blog, facebook, tweet, make book trailers, and a host of other activities that leave most of us gasping for breath and hoping we’re not being seen as a cross between a circus ring master and a cheerleader. Max Barry gives a good idea of the feeling in his latest blog. Me? I’m still trying to figure out the difference between my wall and my page on facebook.
If you happen to hear that I’m slowly killing off my family, please don’t take it literally. With the wonderful Clan Destine Press giving me a lot of input with my e-book covers I’ve been using family members as bodies (alive and dead) on the covers. Daughter Kris on Black Ice and daughter-in-law Cherie (writing as Cheryse Durrant) and niece Kelly Byrne on Dangerous Deception. Kris is also responsible for re-vamping my website and is gradually getting it into shape. I asked her to aim for user-friendly and I feel she has achieved this.
I’m looking forward to attending SheKilda Again, the Sisters-in-Crime Convention in Melbourne on 7-9 October. It’s going to be a great two days and nights and I’m in wonderful company on two panels, Crimance with romantic suspense authors Bronwyn Parry, Helene Young and Emma Boling, and chaired by the wonderful Anne Gracie, and State of Play, as well as co-presenting the workshop Writing Crimance with romantic suspense author Bronwyn Parry.
I’m thrilled that Fatal Flaw will be on sale at SheKilda.
Melbourne should be putting on her Spring airs and graces with leaves and blossoms forming on winter-bare branches and the sun peeping through grey skies earlier in the day. But I’m bringing my woollies just in case 🙂
It’s hard to believe it’s three weeks since I returned from the Romance Writers of Australia national conference in Melbourne. It was their 20th Anniversary conference and undoubtedly the best I have attended. The quality of the workshops, tutorials and plenary sessions was exceptional. Over the past couple of years the association has run an Author Day on the Thursday prior to the conference, and this continues to be a wonderful opportunity for published authors to meet with other published authors, both from Australia and overseas, and editors, publishers and agents to find out what is happening in their industry.
The buzz during the four days revolved around the future of publishing – print versus electronic. Would ebooks bring about the demise of the print book? Although the impact of ebooks is only beginning to be felt in Australia, we’re very much aware of how the industry has fared overseas. As more e-reading devices become available and more commonplace in Australia, there is no doubt we will follow overseas trends and opt for purchasing ebooks in greater numbers.
At the conference it was emphasised that as more and more ebooks are self-published (current figures indicate they are already in excess of 1 million) it will become even more difficult for readers to find quality reads. It will also mean that first-time authors risk seeing their books have miserable sales figures. According to Bob Mayer (NY Times bestselling author who has started his own publishing company Who Dares Wins Publishing), the authors who are doing better than most in electronic sales are those who have already been print published, have an established readership, and have the rights back to their back list that they can e-publish and attract new readers. The chances of a first-time self-published author achieving good to great sales are slim. The exceptions to this are authors like John Locke and Amanda Hocking, who have done amazingly well with their ebooks. Unfortunately, the other 999,999 authors will never come even remotely close to their success.
Author and blogger extraordinnaire, Joanna Penn, interviews a lot of industry professionals with insights into books and publishing, and both readers and writers will find her blog interesting.
With all the chaos happening before I left for the conference, I didn’t get to pack until the night before I flew out, and ended up forgetting my camera. So check out www.romanceaustralia.com for pics. The only one I have to show you is one a friend took on the last day and emailed to me. So if we’re looking a little tired … But here we are – Sandra Allan, Kaz Delaney and Isolde Martyn (the blondes) and me (the short one).