Welcome to The Writer's Challenge

I'm updating weekly-ish and whenever something exciting happens, so please come back often, browse the archived information,
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Learn more about my books at ShoshannaEvers.com

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Call for Submissions - Attention Self-Published Authors!

Successful Self Publishing: How We Do It (and How You Can Too!)
Edited by Shoshanna Evers, #1 Amazon Authorship Bestselling Author

Call for Submissions: Deadline May 21th, 30th 2012

This call for submissions is open to any self-published author, including traditionally published authors who are also self-publishing.

How did you find success as a self-published author? The goal of this anthology is to give pre-published writers and authors considering self-publishing the inspiration and advice to help them start on their own path to self-publishing success.

There are many different ways to quantify success, and we are looking for all of them. While we are looking for bestselling self-published authors to submit essays, if your sales are modest but you finally realized your dream of having your story told, then that is its own form of success, and we welcome your submission as well.

Some questions to consider while writing your essay include:
  1. Why did you choose to self-publish?
  2. Have you tried publishing traditionally, or are you published traditionally as well? If you are also traditionally published, what are the benefits to self-publishing that drew you to it?
  3. What sort of process did you put your book through before you published it? Editing, critique groups, beta-readers?
  4. How much did it cost you to self-publish your book? What did you pay for cover art, for editing, formatting, etcetera? Did you do it all yourself?
  5. How many books do you sell a day/month/since you started?
  6. Is your book available for print? How did you go about doing that, and are your books selling better in ebook format or print?
  7. How important are reviews for you? How do you get reviews for your book(s)?
  8. What do you think is the future of publishing?
  9. What’s the most important piece of advice you have for a writer looking to self-publish?
Contributors whose essays are chosen for the anthology will receive a $20 payment plus a free Smashwords coupon to download the anthology upon its release.

The essays will be contracted on a non-exclusive basis, meaning the contributor retains the right to re-publish the essay as he or she pleases. Previously published blog posts or interviews on the subject of self-publishing will also be considered but original material is preferred.

Tell your story in 750 to 2000 words and include a 50 word bio with links to your website, blog, Twitter, Facebook, and Amazon/B&N/Smashwords pages.

Submit the essay as a Word doc or rtf and name the file Successful_YourName. Email the attachment to shoshanna.evers @ yahoo. com (no spaces) with Submission in the subject line.

About the Editor:

Shoshanna Evers edited and self-published the #1 Amazon Authorship Bestselling writing anthology How to Write Hot Sex: Tips From Multi-Published Erotic Romance Authors. In addition to being published by Ellora’s Cave, The Wild Rose Press, Cleis Press, and Berkley/Jove, Shoshanna has found success with self-publishing, hitting several Amazon category bestseller lists and quitting her day job to be a full-time writer.

Sexily *Evers* After... www.ShoshannaEvers.com

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

What's it like to Co-Author a Book?

Hello Fellow Writers!
Today one of my favorite authors from Ellora's Cave, Lily Harlem, is guest blogging about her experience co-authoring a book (with Natalie Dae). I've often wondered how writers do it - since for me, writing is such a solitary venture. Well... writing the first draft is solitary. Then the beta readers and the editors come into play... but I've always relished being the one with the final say in how my manuscript turns out. Still, hearing Lily's account makes co-authoring seem like it could be really cool....

Co-Authoring by Lily Harlem

Thanks so much for having me here at the Writer’s Challenge. I am going to chat a little about co-authoring which is something I’ve had the great pleasure of becoming involved in over the last year. My partner in erotic writings is Natalie Dae (also known as Emmy Ellis and Sarah Masters to name a few of her personas).
Natalie Dae and I have our first co-author novel THAT FILTHY BOOK just out at Total-E-Bound.
How did it all start?
Well, we became friends as we have a mutual editor and got chatting on the loop. It wasn’t long before we realised that we lived within a few hours of one another which meant, at a UK writing event, we had the chance to meet up—enormous fun that included plenty of wine, tons of gossip and great entertainment!
By this point we had been beta reading each other’s work (Nat is also a whizz at anything arty so had helped me out with bits and pieces I was completely hopeless at), and we knew one another’s style pretty well.
One day, a month or so after finally meeting face-to-face, she sent me a first chapter. “I’m having a wobble,” she said. “Read this before I go any further and tell me if its complete poo.” I’m sure any authors reading this will know exactly what she meant, I certainly did!
Anyway, I read it and it wasn’t complete poo at all, it was bloody brilliant. Great characters, fab introspection, all in all a really wonderful set-up, but still she scratched her head, unsure of where to go with it, so I said, not wanting to waste any of her lovely words, “How about I write the next chapter?” The reply: “Go for it!”
So I did and it was raw, sexy—in fact, downright filthy! Nat loved it, and not only that, we both felt like we’d just put our characters on the biggest, most thrilling roller-coaster in the world and we were going to have to hang on for the seriously wild ride we’d sent them on.
We were off…
It was then writing together became a complete, chocolate-with-sprinkles indulgence. We would do a chapter length each and pass it on, amazing ourselves at the twists and turns in the plot as we wrote. Of course, we had an idea of where we were going, but it was very loose. But that was the beauty of ‘the book’—it went where our characters wanted it to go.
One thing I found amazing was how we both knew the hero and heroine so well. There was never a time either of us questioned, “Would he/she do/say that?” Everything was seamless, the decisions they made, their actions—even if heart-stoppingly shocking—worked perfectly. Sometimes, at editing, I would read it back and think, “Who wrote that? Me or Nat?” Which must ultimately be a very good sign.
What did I learn?
Writing with someone not only talented but also with a beautiful vibrant use of the English language was wonderful. I learnt a lot as we wrote, experimented too, because it was safe to. Also there was never a ‘writer’s block moment’ or a ‘bugger, now what?’ because Nat knew the novel as well as me so it was only ever a quick question and it was flowing again. We bounced it off one another, quite literally.
That Filthy Book was actually written over just a few weeks; we got into a routine that suited us and the word count romped up. It was then accepted by Total-E-Bound, and Nat, with her other head on as Head of Art at TEB did the amazing cover. I have to say, when she sent it to me I couldn’t stop looking at it. I blew it up to full screen and just stared and stared and stared. I even got up in the middle of the night and stared again!
I knew we had the characters running parallel in our heads, like they were real people we both knew, but when I saw the images she’d created I was staggered by how she’d brought to life what was in my mind’s eye. Everything about Karen and Jacob was right. From their expressions, to their hair colour, physique, and the way Karen is just undoing Jacob’s shirt while they both look shifty. Perfection!!
I feel very privileged not to be only writing with Nat, but also able to call her my friend and confidant. And I hope in years to come, when we have many more co-author titles, we will be able to look back fondly on That Filthy Book and say remember when…
Thanks so much for letting me chatter today. It’s always fun to come and hang out here. Below is a little more information about That Filthy Book.

Lily x

Check out That Filthy Book on Total-E-Bound here.

Lily’s website http://www.lilyharlem.com/index.html
Natalie’s website http://emmyellis.blogspot.com/