Saturday, November 10, 2012
Top 5 List with Samantha Durante & Giveaway!
Today, I have a special treat for all our readers. Samantha Durante, author of Stitch, has stopped by with a list of her five favourite things about being an author. She also has details about a super exciting giveaway that she is running throughout the month of November!
Samantha Durante lives in New York City with her husband, Sudeep, and her cat, Gio. Formerly an engineer at Microsoft, Samantha left the world of software in 2010 to pursue her entrepreneurial dreams and a lifelong love of writing. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania’s Jerome Fisher Program in Management & Technology, Samantha is currently working full time for her company Medley Media Associates as a freelance business writer and communications consultant. Stitch is her first novel. Learn more about Samantha at www.samanthadurante.com.
Please welcome Samantha to A Dash of YA!
Top 5 Things I Love About Being an (Indie) Author by Samantha Durante
Thanks so much to Komal, Michelle, Erica, and Molli for hosting me today! I recently published my first novel, Stitch, and though I’m still new at this whole “author” thing, it’s really been a dream come true! To celebrate, here are the top five things I LOVE about being an author (so far!), in no particular order:
1. Total empowerment.
There were a lot of reasons I decided to go the indie route when publishing Stitch, but by far the main one is that I’m a bit of a control freak and I really liked the idea of having final say over every little detail of my book. I worked with an artist to design the cover, devoted painstaking hours to formatting the e-book versions, and made the final decision about every word, every punctuation mark, and every plot twist. While this is a little scary (after all, I know there are people out there who can do all of these things far better than me!), it also means that the success of my book lies solely on my shoulders… And therefore, as long as I’m willing to put in the work (which I am!), I know my book will do well!
2. My book IS me.
Following with #1, since I didn’t have to get sign-off from a publisher, I could write about whatever I wanted, even a genre-bending thriller that combined paranormal romance and dystopian sci-fi in one (yes, one!) book. I pulled in ghost lore, super-geeky spacetime physics, post-apocalyptic scenarios, a biological pandemic, and of course, a kick-ass female protagonist and sexy-but-sensitive male lead. And yes, the fact that my book does not fit squarely into one genre makes it kind of difficult to market (which is why the traditional publishing industry would be wary of it), but it is full of the things I love. And since – as an independent author – I have the exclusive right to decide what gets published under my name, the fact that I was excited about my book and believed in it was all that mattered.
3. Quick delivery to readers.
The other big factor that drove me to go indie was the ability to get my book to market QUICKLY. It can take months – even years – for a first time author (going the traditional route) to find an agent and a publisher and go through the editing and revision and publication process. Even though part of me wanted the validation of having credible industry professionals sign-off on my work before it went to the public, a bigger part of me just REALLY wanted to share my book with readers NOW (and the thought of waiting that long to get my book out was like a knife to the gut!). By publishing the book myself, I was able to get it to readers only weeks after it was done, instead of months/years (and now that readers are clamoring for part two of the trilogy, I’m really glad that I’ll be able to get it to them as soon as I can!).
4. Bloggers, bloggers, bloggers.
WOW. I have never met a more supportive and encouraging community of people than the world of book bloggers. Since I am doing all my marketing myself (notice a theme here? J), I’ve been in personal contact with literally hundreds of bloggers since my book and blog tour launched a few months ago, and each and every one of them has absolutely blown me away. There’s just been an incredible outpouring of assistance and enthusiasm from the blogging community, and I feel SO grateful to have made contact with all of these amazing people. Thank you SO MUCH to all of the bloggers who have helped me promote Stitch! You guys are amazing!!
5. Reader commentary!
Last but CERTAINLY not least are the readers themselves! It has been just INCREDIBLE to share Stitch with so many people and to hear their feedback and see them getting excited about the story the same way I am. Stitch is definitely a different sort of book, and I have to say, even though I knew I loved the story, I didn’t know if most readers would feel the same. So when 4- and 5-star reviews started popping up all over the internet, you can only imagine how gratifying that felt! I’ve read every review that’s been posted online and it always makes my day to hear that someone enjoyed the book. I’m SO indebted to every reader who’s taken the time to read and talk about Stitch! Nothing is more motivating than passionate fans who are itching for the next installment – I can’t WAIT to get started on the next one for you guys!
Samantha has kindly provided the details for her giveaway below. Please fill out the Rafflecopter for your chance to win one of the amazing prizes up for grabs!