Monday, September 16, 2013

My Smashwords Interview

Good morning. For those of you who publish with Smashwords, you're probably already aware of the new changes to benefit their authors. Mark Coker is doing an amazing job for indies and I'm so glad I decided to stop playing with KDP Select and jump over to Smashwords and diversify. 

One of the latest tools Mark has given us is the ability to do an interview. Now me, I'm a talker. Ask me about my books and I'll go on and on. However, nobody has asked me lately, so I played around with this on Saturday morning, and this is the author interview I gave myself. 


Interview with Anne Gallagher

Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?

I grew up in a little ocean side town in Rhode Island. My teenage summers were spent working at the local ice cream parlour and getting a tan (before that became bad for you). We didn't have a television (by choice) and the only thing to do was read. I cut my teeth on historical romance, bodice rippers and Highlander stories, and Fabio graced every cover. I loved losing myself in different places, not to mention different eras. Somehow though, I found the Regency period and I've never looked back.

Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?

The first story I ever wrote was about a 70's rock band. I must have been seventeen. I still have it. Found it in a box of old papers when we moved. It totally stinks, is riddled with bad dialogue, and a horrible plot, but it means something to me because way back then, I knew this is what I wanted to do with my life. I wanted to be a writer.

What is your writing process?

My writing process starts off in the wee hours of the morning. I like to get up at five, take a quick peek at emails and other social media before I start writing. Usually by my second cup of tea, I open my document and review/edit what I wrote the previous day. I write by the hour. If I can get to work by six, I'll stop writing around eleven and check my word count. Some days I can get in 1500-2000 words, others it's only 500 because I've stopped to do research.

During the school year, things are a little different. I still get up at five and check my social media, but then I take my daughter to school. I generally start to work writing by 8:30 and work until 1. Sometimes, if I'm particularly enamored of my story, I'll turn the computer back on after supper.

What do you read for pleasure?

Funnily enough, not Regency romance. Before I started writing, I must have read every Regency ever written. These days I'm finding myself drawn to women's fiction, cozy mysteries, and autobiographies.

Describe your desk-

In two simple words - a disaster. I have papers, books, research tomes, pens, pads, post-its, pictures, and two horseshoes on top of it right now. However, I'm in the middle of a writing my next book, so that's the way it will stay until it is finished. When that gets published, I will clean the desk and straighten out my office. Once I decide on my next project, it becomes messy again until I finish that. It's a vicious circle.

What motivated you to become an indie author?

I had written my first three Regency novels and sent out queries to agents. They all said they liked my writing, but the market was saturated so they couldn't place me. A good friend of mine had chronicled her foray into self-publishing on her blog, and I thought, "if she could do it, so could I". It was a decided learning curve, but I'm so glad I did it.

How has Smashwords contributed to your success?

Smashwords has given me markets that I don't think I would have gotten into. Their reach is global, with varied companies, which means varied devices to utilize. Sure there are other companies who are global, but they only have one or two e-reading devices. And not everyone owns one. With Smashwords, the opportunity to be read by millions of people all over the world is just awesome.

What do your fans mean to you?

My fans mean the world to me. I think with every writer, the first letter or review you get that says, "I loved your book" gives you the feeling that you've finally found your place in the world. And that in turn, spurs us to continue. Sure, I've had my share of bad reviews, but the good far outweigh them. And the first thing we have to learn is that not everyone is going to love everything we write. However, for those readers who continue to read what I write is like Manna from Heaven. It sustains me.

What are you working on next?

I'm trying to finish up the last four books in my series The Reluctant Grooms. I'm currently working on Richard's story (hoping I'll have enough of a word count to make a novel), and that's slated for release around Thanksgiving. I hope. Then by Christmas I'm hoping to get two novellas out (both are prequels to the last book) and then next spring, the final book in the series should be ready for publication. I tend to work on two or three books at a time, and the two novellas have already been started.



So that's it. I know it's not the best interview, but I'm not a writer for Rolling Stone.

Tell me -- Are you published on Smashwords? Have you seen any of their new changes? Have you done an author interview with yourself?

Anne Gallagher (c) 2013


15 comments:

R. Mac Wheeler said...

I avoided SW because of the meat grinder...I wanted control over how my MS looked...but will probably try it out just to get to control the giveaway of my work...oh the irony

Laurel Garver said...

I've used Smash mostly to get my work on iTunes, since I know loads of people with Apple devices. Loading directly, you have to own a Mac (which I don't and can't afford).

I kind of like the idea of interviewing myself. So many book bloggers have asked me weird questions that don't tell you much about me or my work; it would be nice to have some control over what's asked.

Like you, I don't read as much in the genre I'm writing like I did before I published. At this point I do actually worry I'll be influenced by others' style. Before I was more concerned with learning what's out there. Interesting!

And it was fun to get to know you better! I wish I had as many hours a day to write as you do. You're very lucky!

Anne Gallagher said...

Mac -- There's a trick to the meatgrinder. I'll email you.

Laurel -- Yeah, the interviews I did before were mostly on the book I was currently writing. This is more like a general overview. They have basic questions you can answer and they allow you to write your own so it's pretty nifty.

With the new volunteer job I'm in for school, my days got cut from 5 to 2, so I'm having to rearrange that schedule. A lot. So, thinking Richard's story is going to be out by Thanksgiving is a long shot. But we'll see.

Stacy McKitrick said...

It's nice to see someone praise Smashwords for a change. If I go the self-pub route (and that may happen more likely than not), it's who I plan on using. I want my book to show up everywhere it possibly can!

Cool stuff about the interviews, too. I always have problems thinking up good questions.

Maria Zannini said...

Smashwords is okay, but Amazon sends me more money. :)

Anne Gallagher said...

Stacy -- I like Smashwords primarily for the reason I stated. It gets you to more vendors than just the mighty zon. and yeah, interviews...

Maria -- Without a doubt Amazon sends me more money, but I like the idea of being everywhere. I'm not crazy about Select or its limitations of 90 days. And Smaswords allows us to give pre-orders and free all the time. It may not be the biggest book retailer but it's getting better all the time.

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Yvonne Osborne said...

Interesting. I like to keep up with what you're doing, since I might be a copycat one day!

Jayne said...

I like the changes you have made to your blog, Anne! And your attitude is just great - in that you wanted to talk about your writing and came up with your own author interview. It was lovely knowing more about you, and I'm so glad that Smashwords etc is bringing you so much pleasure! Your writing process is also an inspiration. :-)

Sarah Ahiers said...

How did i miss this post until today??
And how awesome is it that you found that old story!

Shelley Sly said...

This was so fun to read, Anne. I admire you for getting up so early and working so hard. And that first story you ever wrote sounds great! :)

Anne Gallagher said...

Aman -- Thanks for stopping by.

Yvonne -- Copy away! If you ever need help you know where to find me.

Jayne -- Thanks. Smashwords just keep adding more innovative tools for authors and I just think it's great.

Sarah -- You were busy, that's how you missed it. No worries. I understand.

Shelly -- I WISH that first story I ever wrote was great. Maybe some day I'll take another look at it. Who knows, maybe it's salvageable. Great to see you.

Anne Gallagher said...

Aman -- Thanks for stopping by.

Yvonne -- Copy away! If you ever need help you know where to find me.

Jayne -- Thanks. Smashwords just keep adding more innovative tools for authors and I just think it's great.

Sarah -- You were busy, that's how you missed it. No worries. I understand.

Shelly -- I WISH that first story I ever wrote was great. Maybe some day I'll take another look at it. Who knows, maybe it's salvageable. Great to see you.

Anne Gallagher said...

Aman -- Thanks for stopping by.

Yvonne -- Copy away! If you ever need help you know where to find me.

Jayne -- Thanks. Smashwords just keep adding more innovative tools for authors and I just think it's great.

Sarah -- You were busy, that's how you missed it. No worries. I understand.

Shelly -- I WISH that first story I ever wrote was great. Maybe some day I'll take another look at it. Who knows, maybe it's salvageable. Great to see you.

Al said...

Nope I am not on Smashwords.
Just Kindle and hard copies.

I haven't looked at Smashwords for ages so thanks for the reminder