Terry Heath, Indie Author and Podcaster, interviewed me on his new Indie Author’s Journey Podcast. Terry’s new to podcasting but scoring interesting and informative interviews with authors and other publishing professionals on topics such as writing to market, exploring Scrivener, author juggling, and more. Terry’s easy-going yet on-topic style makes the podcast both informative and enjoyable. Check him out.
While most of the interview is about cover design, I do adress some author topics at the end of the podcast. Check it if you’re interested.
Here’s the snippet from Terry’s interview with me:
IAJ-08: Book Cover Design with Amanda Matthews
People say, “You can’t judge a book by a cover.” But in the world of online publishing, the first impression created by a book cover often means the difference between a book’s failure or its commercial success. In episode 08 of the Indie Author’s Journey Podcast, we talk with award-winning book cover designer and international bestselling author Amanda Matthews about several things to consider when choosing a cover for your book.
Head on over and listen to the podcast: Click here.
This topic is hot. Scorching. And everyone has their own opinion.
Should we adopt content advisories for literature?
In the past two years, I’ve published very little. Okay, nothing, but don’t rub it in. I’ve been working on craft and my mental toughness, and trust me when I say that took a lot of time. 😉
However, I have completed a couple books beyond Shadow Born. They will be scheduled for release this year. I’ll be making announcements and sneak peeks in the months to come. One’s a middle-grade fantasy and one’s an adult Viking fantasy romance. Neither fit with what I’ve published in the past.
I’ve published a few books under pen names as well, and I’ve come to the conclusion that I need to move everything under Mande Matthews. Managing different pen names is just too time-consuming. It creates massive amounts of work that never gets done. I’m left overwhelmed, underproductive, and exhausted. I need to spend that time writing new books. This might confuse some readers as I have written in different genres, but mostly, I’ve written across a spectrum of target audience ages.
For that reason, as I move towards publication on new releases, I’m am considering assigning content advisories to each release, following the video game rating system:
E for Everyone
T for Teen
M for Mature
Why not movie ratings, you ask? I find the whole PG to R rating a little sketchy. Where, exactly, is that line. If you need a test audience to watch the film and then decide…er…I would say that’s a moveable line. I want something clearer. I find the video game advisory system easier. I would be adding these advisories mostly for parents who vet their kids’ books. I know readers are smart. You can tell the difference between an adult Viking romance and an Epic Fantasy, and I don’t know of many authors that are doing this. However, I’m feeling rather compelled to extend this courtesy to readers who want a quick audit of what they’ll be getting when they purchase one of my books.
What are your thoughts? Do you prefer to be advised of book content or not? I’d love to hear what you have to say on the subject.
In finding and expressing my authentic self, I find peace, love, understanding, and a path to live in an expanded way.
I think everyone wants this. Whether they are a writers, artists, musicians, cooks, mommies, or engineers. The profession doesn’t matter. It’s the internal drive to be the YOU you are meant to be. (more…)
A lot of people (both kids and adults) suffer at the judgmental hands of others. They put themselves out there and try hard to be the best they can be, only to be shunned, mocked, made fun of, and in extreme cases, bullied.
It can freeze you right in your tracks.
You begin to second-guess yourself. Your confidence fades. You feel bad about who you are, and what your sharing with the world.
As we’re approaching the release of the Kindle-All Stars’ anthology for charity, Carnival of Cryptids, I’ve been getting the same question fairly often: “What’s a cryptid?” A quick look in the Merriam Webster dictionary says it isn’t found, which is beautifully ironic. “Cryptid” is a fairly specialized term, but it’s something we’re all familiar with, creatures of folklore.
I am ashamed to admit it, but the above photo reflects my “office” more than it should. However, guilt aside, this is where I’m most creative, where I’m comfortable, where the story flows, and heck, if the muse takes a lunch break, I can always take a nap, right?
The Light Keepers went free on Smashwords May 5th, 2012. Though distributed to all other online retailers for FREE, Amazon has not price matched, regardless of my attempts to report a lower price and email them with begging and mostly embarrassing pleas.
It was bound to happen sooner or later: the bad review. I received my first 2 star review the other day. At first, I thought, no! This couldn’t happen. I’ve honed my craft for decades, I’ve labored over telling the best story I could, I’ve edited and re-edited, and edited some more—how did this happen?
As an author, I’m constantly stressed about “performance” on, not only a storytelling/writing level, but on an author platform level. The advice from financially well-to-do authors emphasize the importance of sales and marketing. The list of shoulds for building your audience and platform are so long, that, when placed alongside your responsibility to create and package the best stories you possibly can, overwhelment-itis can easily set in.
Mande: I’m glad to welcome back my friend Matt Posner who was last featured here a few months back. Matt’s new book is Teen Guide to Sex and Relationships. It’s a nonfiction book, but I think that sounds like a great novel title too.
Matt: You know, I think it does, in a Judy Blume sort of way, and maybe Jess and I should do a novel like that, too. But we’re sticking to nonfiction collaboration, at least according to current plans.