Today I am interviewing Indie Author Kris Pearson.
Welcome. To start the ball rolling tell me a little bit about your self.
K. As a child of ten, I wanted a helicopter. My father said okay, as long as I saved my pocket money and landed it on the back lawn and not the front.
What a gift for a child - to be taken seriously and encouraged!
So here I am now without a helicopter but certain I can have anything if I really want it.
S What a great memory. How long have you been writing? And what keeps you writing?
K. I've been writing since I could put words on paper. I read my stories and reviews on Children's Radio and wrote my autobiography at twelve. I worked in advertising as a copywriter rising to advertising manager for a furniture chain and wrote articles for periodicals in my spare time. I came to fiction when I joined RWNZ. I write because I love it. With me, it's not seeing my words in print so much as creating people. I’ll see a germ in real life and use it to create a story. A few days ago I saw a man reverse his ute into his wife at the tip and push her into the huge pit of rubbish. I'll use that cameo somewhere!
S. LOL. What did she say to her husband? You've placed in The Clendon Award and won or placed in several short story competitions. Tell us what you've gained from these competitions.
K. From the Clendon - deadlines! Instead of meandering along you have to finish. Barbara and Peter Clendon sponsor this contest with RWNZ and it’s judged by readers, so it’s the story that counts. It’s past entries in the Clendon I’m now self publishing. Short stories were the first fiction I sold, so to me, they are special. They taught me to write tight. Some of my favourites are published as "Five Short Romantic Reads".
S. You've recently ventured into the field of self-publishing on Amazon. Why have you chosen this option?
K My writing doesn’t fit category style. I have eight completed novels– and none have sold and I want them to be read. They are often a little off the wall and humour keeps sneaking in, as does my irreverent attitude to life. And now self-publishing is taking off, it is time.
S Has this been a steep learning curve? And what part of the process presented the most challenges?
K. Editing my earlier books, I found my skills had grown and the quality improved so a quick tart-up was not an option. This has been a 'start on page one and make everything better' exercise, time-consuming but enjoyable.
S. How would you rate the experience dealing with Amazon?
K. Amazon has great information and an informative How To video on uploading a book. Their report on book sales is constantly updated. I am so new; I check it twice a day! I’ve never had to use their help desk yet, so perhaps I'm not the best person to answer that question.
S. Do you have any advice for other writers who are contemplating venturing into the world of self-publishing?
K. Yes - go for it. But one lonely book floating out there isn't going to do it for you. You need a number of them - and new ones following on.
S. Have you made any mistakes or done anything that in hindsight you wouldn't do or would do differently?
K. I would learn to use a computer properly. To me it's a clever typewriter, not a helpful attitude. Would I have submitted to different publishers or tried to write other genres? No- romance is me. My books have a small casts so I can get close to my characters. Should I have put more work into submitting them? Yes of course - but that would have eaten into my writing time...
S Many review sites state they won't review self published authors because of inferior presentation. Will this have a negative impact considering many pundits view it as the way of the future?
K Writers write, regardless. Good ones will shine and succeed. Word spreads very quickly now. Publishing doesn’t make books good or bad. There are some shocking published books out there, and real self published gems. They should pick the good self-published books and give them their due.
S. I've read two of your books;
Wrong Sister http://amzn.com/B006MZH7XU
And Seduction on the Cards - http://amzn.com/B006FEABQS
The formatting and presentation is superb. I haven't come across a single error to spoil my reading pleasure. Do you employ a professional editor? Would you recommend employing a professional editor?
K. No - it's all me. After years of proofing ads I HATE mistakes so there's personal pride here. A professional editor may improve my books, but that would steal my fun. Many Indie Writers do have editors. If they feel it's the way to a better book, then good on them.
S. Reviewers and readers are influenced by book covers. How challenging is it to design and produce enticing covers?
K. With my background in advertising and being a hobby artist, I have a fair design sense. This combined with my husband's computer skills works well. Covers are important. Mine are simple, colourful and to the point. I like having a co-ordinated look-same fonts etc as a visual lead-in to the next book. Covers on Amazon are shown small so visibility is vital.
S. If you could offer one word of advice to other authors what would it be?
K. Believe in yourself. If you really want to write, the good stuff will shine through.
Shirley : Kris it's been a pleasure and thank you for sharing your time and expertise. You can find out more about this author on her website http://www.krispearson.com/
Please feel free to leave comments or ask Kris any questions.