Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Introduction to myself and this blog

Hello and welcome!

I'm the wife of fantasy author Michael Sullivan whose six book series: The Riyria Revelations is being published by Aspirations Media Inc.(AMI). I run a writer's group in the Washington DC area with 370+ authors. Through it I do monthly free lectures on topics such as publishing, book promotion, contracts and the like. I have a wealth of "hands-on" experience from handling the "business side" of my husband's writing and share this knowledge to aid others in becoming published. My goal is to help people avoid costly mistakes and use their time and energy wisely.

I'm dedicating this blog to all things related to the "business side" of publishing novels. Maybe I should start with some background. I've been president of a number of businesses including:

  • Vermont Creative Software - a leader in GUI tools used by programmers to create applications in the 1980's
  • Spectrum Design - a advertising agency that specialized in marketing communication materials (websites, brochures, direct mail pieces) for high technology companies
  • Ridan Publishing - a small press which I'm still looking for high quality writers for

Through these endeavours I've learned a lot about promotions and business: the two things writers feel the least comfortable with and yet very important aspects of their writing careers. My husband is a published author (The Crown Conspiracy - Oct 2008, Avempartha - April 2009) and it was my job to take his written word and "get it out to people".

Along the way I've learned a lot, made some mistakes (and learned from them) and met a lot of other authors struggling with the same issues. About a year ago I joined a meetup group related to publishing and writing and when the organizer stepped down, I took it over. It now has 340 members in and around the Washington DC area (learn more). In this group I give lectures on subjects such as:

  • Publishing 101
  • How to write a winning query letter
  • How to publicise your book
  • Using the Internet to promote your book
  • Direct mail marketing for authors
  • Self publishing 101
  • Negotiating publishing contracts
  • Self publishing verses vanity press
  • Literary agents how to find them

I never charge for these seminars, I think authors have too many people trying to steal their money to make their dreams come true. I just spent a lot of time doing research for my husband and don't want the knowledge to die with me - I'd rather share it with others.

So stay tuned and tell your writer's friends and hopefully I can help you come just a few steps closer to your dreams.