Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Interview With a Publisher!

Hey everyone!

I do quite a few author interviews so I decided to do something a little different and interview a publisher! I know I speak to many young writers who want to get published so I hope some of you find this interview useful!

I pleased to welcome Sara from Inspired Quill Publishers. I've heard many great things about her publishing company!

What type of books do you publish?
Inspired Quill publishes most types of book. Our genres do not include Romance, Biography and Children's however, due to the different methods if marketing that these require. We do however, also publish non-fiction, short stories (collections) and poetry. Maybe in the future we will look to specialise, but for now we're more interested in publishing great literature, rather than closing our doors to too much.

Do you think the age of the author matters in terms of them getting published?
I would really like to say 'no' here, but I have to admit that it does matter in some regards. If you're still at school for example, how are you going to do book tours? Will your parents/guardians sign their name below yours on any contracts that are put to you? I also feel that good writing comes with experience. You can write relatively well from a young age (look at Christopher Paolini), but it's like everything else - the longer you stick at it, the better you become at the subtleties of a craft. On the other side of the coin, would a publisher really want to work with someone in their 70's? Especially if they're not really tech-savvy or able to attend author signings. Not a lot of people remember that the whole 'age in publishing' debate moves both ways for new authors. Whilst I would never reject an author's submission just because of their age, I would nevertheless have to be 100% happy with the submission if the author was under the age of 18, or over the age of 65.

Do you recommend that authors get agents before submitting their manuscript?
The answer to this question depends on where the writers want to submit to. I believe all of the 'Big 6' publishers (Hatchette, Random House, Penguin, Bloomsbury, etc) all require that authors have agents who pitch on their behalf. There's no way to get around that, I'm afraid. With smaller publishers (such as Inspired Quill) however, you don' actually require agents to send in your work. Having an agent tends to lend credibility to your cause, as you've made the effort to seek one out, and your title must be decent for it to have gotten representation in the first place, but unless you have your heart set on the really big players, it isn't a prerequisite.

What methods of promotion do you use to spread word about a book?
Methods of promotion that Inspired Quill uses include Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Conventions, Blog Tours, Real Tours, Book Trailers and more. We're always trying to look for fun new ways of promoting our titles, and as you can imagine it's a never-ending endeavour!

What advice would give to a young writer trying to get published?
The answer to this question could almost be a blog post in itself! But here's the bit of primary advice I normally give to young writers: Don't take rejection personally. If you really, truly want something, you'll fight tooth and nail for it. But this isn't to say that you should go on thinking that your book is the best thing since [Insert Favourite Book Title Here]! Unless specified otherwise, a rejection means that although your work might be good, it isn't quite there yet. It doesn't have that thing that can catapult it into the bestsellers list. Whatever you do, don't stop learning. By Stephen King's 'On Writing', and Arthur Plotnik's 'The Element of Authorship'. The best authors I work with at Inspired Quill are those that want to constantly improve their craft. It takes time to master the technical side of writing. Oh! And another thing: make every sentence count!

Thanks for the awesome interview Sara!

If you would like to know more then you can contact Sara here:
Twitter = @InspiredQuill (or) @LadyTath
Email: sjslack@inspired-quill.com
Facebook = http://www.facebook.com/InspiredQuill
Website: http://www.inspired-quill.com

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Author Interview: Shayne Leighton!

Hi everyone! I pleased to present an interview with the fabulous Shayne Leighton, author of 'Of Light and Darkness'.

1. Hi Shayne! Thanks for stopping by the blog! What inspired you to write Of Light and Darkness?  
Thanks! I'm happy to be here. I was inspired to write Of Light and Darkness because I was inspired by real people and invents in my life. I love fantasy, and I would love to live in a fantastical world, so I took situations in my life and people I actually know and created a world with magic and fantasy where they would exist. My husband inspired the character of Valek and because he is from the Czech Republic, I set the novel in Prague.

2.  Did you always plan for the book to be a series?  
Yes. I always knew the story was too big for just one book. I wanted the time and space to expound upon characters and their back stories and to really build on the conflicts and themes of the story.

3. What where the best and worst parts of writing Of Light and Darkness?  
The worst parts, by far, was hitting a writer's block. There is nothing worse than trying to tell a story, and not being able to figure out what happens next. Sometimes the novel would sit on the computer for weeks, before I figured out where I wanted to go with it. The best and most gratifying parts, was when I was really jiving with a scene and loving how the story was developing and what the characters were doing. Sometimes, the characters really drive the story.

4. I hear that you’ve developed the book into film! What was that experience like for you?  
We are still in the development process. It's both a struggle, and a lot of fun. It's cool to see the project coming together and various filmmakers and cast members eager to get on board with the project. I love filming the teasers to entice both audience members and industry people. It's cool to see the story I wrote play out with real people and with sets, costumes, and other visual aspects.

5. Any hints as to what’s next in store for Charlotte and Valek?  
A lot of drama and a lot of danger awaits Valek and Charlotte in book two! I can definitely say that their relationship gets challenged. You'll just have to wait and see. ;) 

Thanks for stopping by Shayne! I can't wait for book 2!

You can read my review of her awesome novel here.

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Busy Times!

Hey guys!

I just wanted to apologise for being MIA this week! It was my first week back at uni so I had to sort out my classes, meaning I was quite a busy bee. I'm all sorted now though so I can get back to blogging!

I have loads coming up this month including author interviews and even an interview with a publisher so be sure to keep an eye out for them. I'm also going to be posting a few features about young writers this month so be sure to check that out if you're a young, aspiring writer!

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