3 S.R. Johannes: January 2012

Thursday, January 26, 2012

On The Bright Side Official Tour

OTBS Blog Tour stops so far:
Today's Stop(s)
  • Feb 20th - Social Moms (Guest Post: The Rise of Dead Characters in children's Fiction)
Upcoming Stops

    Friday, January 20, 2012

    The Schizophrenic Indie Pubber

    Today I wanted to talk to you about all the roles I feel like I'm playing as an indie pubber - just to give you an idea of what you will have to do if you take this journey.

    Because 1/2 of it - I never thought about. I kinda thought I would upload a book and then market it.
    1. Writer - this one is a given :)
    2. Editor - in order to not spend thousands of dollars - you need to be even better at editing. use your money wisely so your copyeditor is faster.
    3. Budgeter - you could keep spending money so you have to come up with a budget and prioritize your funds (if you even have any :). But there is no way to do this free.
    4. Cover designer - you need to know what looks good and what doesn't. Placement, fonts, and copy. Whether you pay someone or not - you need to know what concept you want and how to define quality. If you know photoshop, you are golden. Learn it if you can. It will save you time and money.
    5. Jacket copyeditor - you need to know how to write good jacket copy.
    6. Formatter - unless you want to pay someone to format.  You will have to format in several different ways, depending on what ebook format you need (epub, mobi, pdf, paperback etc). I think I did four for Untraceable.
    7. Researcher - you need to be able to get online and find answers to your own questions as well as find questions you should be asking yourself. There is not a detailed guide. You also need to be keeping up with the ebook/digital market.
    8. Account manager - you need to manage all your author accounts online. Right now with paperbacks and ebook formats - I probably manage and check five different sites a day including B&N, Amazon (2 different ones for PB and ebook), Smashwords, as well as all the places Smashwords delivers to (kobo, ibooks etc) - you need to know what your book is doing and check the information. 
    9. Inventory - You need to know what you are selling and keep track for your numbers to reconcile records.
    10. Accountant - you need to be able to figure out what you should be getting paid from each place. This requires spreadsheets and daily counts.
    11. Lawyer - You need to follow up with pirates who are posting your book for free downloads and send letters.
    12. Marketer - You need to know how to get the word out about your book, have the time to do it, and follow up.
    13. Assertive without being aggressive - you need to know how to ask for blurbs and reviews and interviews without annoying people.
    14. Social Networker - you need to keep managing all your social networks and stay out in front of people (without being obnoxious.) blogs, twitters, facebook. etc
    15. Interviewee - you need to be able to fill out tons of requests for interviews, reviews, and more.
    16. Advertiser - you need to know what ads you can pay for, what ads are free, and which ones are most effective. This requires looking at free sites and searching for site.
    17. Supporter - you need to support others in their journeys. It is not all about you.
    18. Typer - I wish I could type faster, If you are a "pecker" (keep it clean) then take lessons.
    19. Swagger - You need to know where to go to get swag for your signings
    20. PR rep - you need to call and set up signings or other PR related activities. You need to write and drop press releases. And contact media for articles/features/ and interviews. Create your own press kits.
    21. Agent - if you want to get your book picked up by agents or film agents etc - you still have to send queries etc.
    22. Problem Solver - Problems come up daily whether it is your numbers disappearing at amazon, or a blogger who forgot to post an interview, or a price discrepancy. They come up every day.
    23. Self Believer - Indies get rejection too. And it hurts. You have to move on and find those who support you instead of chasing the ones who don't.
    24. Thanker - you need to thank those who support you.
    25. Multi-tasker - I shift all day long between these roles. It's exhausting.
    26. Panicker - you gotta be able to work while you panic. Crying is allowed but your fingers must never leave the keyboard. ;)
    27. Night owl - it is when you catch up.
    28. Project manager - when you have cover designs and editors - you have to manage to a budget and a timeline.
    29. Sales - you have to be out there selling without being cheesy about it.
    30. Psychologist - i have to talk myself down off a ledge every now and then. Of course I do live in a one story so not too bad. :)
    All this along with mother, friend, wife, cleaner, laundry doer, cooker, dog walker, appointment maker.

    Last on the list - To find a way to only sleep 6 hours a night and not be a total bear (still working on this one)

    Basically, indie pubbing is like running your own business - all by yourself. So all the things a business would do - you would do. It's Entrepreneurial Authoring.

    I think that is it. But I'm too brain dead to remember.

    What do you think?/ Do any of these surprise you?

    If you can think of another one, please add it to the comments. :)

    Wednesday, January 18, 2012

    On The Bright Side Tour & Cover Reveal

    Don't forget Tonight's Indelible Chat For All Writers!
    Calling all writers. Go to Indelible blog tonight from 8-9 EST and simply log in at the chat window.  About 20 of us will be there to answer questions about indie pubbing, book marketing, and have TONS of giveaways. Join us!

    Official On The Bright Side blog tour announced tomorrow.

    Until then, a few of the blog events are happening this week so give them some love too

    OTBS Blog Tour stops so far this week:
    Also, I stopped by Shannon Messenger's blog today to talk about marketing to tweens.

    On The Bright Side Cover Reveal

    YAY! - here is On The Bright Side's First Cover Reveal. Thanks to Story Siren for the shout out today! On The Bright Side comes out Jan 31st, 2012. Yes, I know crazy! Add it to your Goodreads. 

    Vania at VLC Photo did the cover again and I love it. I love here :) Checkout her blog because she is currently running a contest and winner gets a cover design! 

    On the Bright Side is a hilarious road to guardian angeldom paved with so much drama and due-paying that it makes middle school look painless.

    As if the devil’s food cake at her wake and the white fat pants she’s stuck wearing for eternity weren’t bad enough, fourteen year-old Gabby is quick to discover that Cirrus, the main rung of Heaven, is a far cry from the Pearly Gates. Here, Skyphones and InnerNets are all the rage. Until Gabby finds out she has to protect Angela, her school nemesis, in order to move up through the training levels of heaven. Problem is, Angela is now hitting on Gabby's should-have-been boyfriend. (awkward!)

    Instead of protecting Angela, Gabby pranks her (like tripping is a sin?) at the hopes of cooling off the new couple. At first, they seem harmless until the school dance sabotage gets 
    completely out of control. Then, her Celestial Sky Agent, who happens to have anger management issues of his own, puts Gabby on probation, threatening her eternal future. 

    Determined to right her wrongs, Gabby steals an ancient artifact that allows her to return to Earth for just one day. Without knowing, she kicks off a series of events and learns what can happen when you hate someone to death. 

    Praises for On The Bright Side

    "S.R. Johannes delivers a cute paranormal thrill ride for middle graders! Even in death there is a BRIGHT SIDE!" - Addison Moore, author of the bestselling Celestra series, soon to be a TV series with 20th Century Fox.

    Clever and charming, ON THE BRIGHT SIDE is the story of a reluctant guardian angel, her still-breathing crush, and the frenemy she’s assigned to protect. A great read! 

    -Suzanne Young, author of A Need So Beautiful, A Want So Wicket (6/12), and The Program (2013)

    “ON THE BRIGHT SIDE is both hilarious and heart-warming – a tale that’ll have you hoping that there really *are* spunky and determined angels like Gabby who’ve got our backs.” 

    - Kristin O’Donnell Tubb, author of Selling Hope & The 13th Sign (2013) (Feiwel & Friends)

    "With a smart, snappy heroine and a heart-warming crush, ON THE BRIGHT SIDE is a page-turning new take on guardian angels that left me begging for a sequel!" 

    - Gretchen McNeil, author of Possess and Ten (9/12) (Balzar + Bray)

    Tuesday, January 17, 2012

    Teen Book Scene Tour

    Untraceable - Official "Teen Book Scene" Blog Tour

    Thanks to Kari and Corrine over at Teen Book Scene for doing a wonderful job in creating a great tour for Untraceable. Go here to check out the stops!

    Monday, January 16: Stacy M at Urban Fantasy Investigations(Teenage Garage Sale)
    Tuesday, January 17: Heidi at The Readiacs (Review) 
    Wednesday, January 18: Kristen T at Seeing Night Reviews (Author Interview)
    Thursday, January 19: Faye at Ramblings of a Teenage Bookworm(Review)
    Friday, January 20: Corinne at Lost for Words (Character This or That: Grace)

    Monday, January 23: Melissa at Me, My Shelf and I (Book Picks)
    Tuesday, January 24: Lili at Chica Reader (Cover Post)
    Wednesday, January 25: Stacy M at Urban Fantasy Investigations (Review) 
    Thursday, January 26: Faye at Ramblings of a Teenage Bookworm (Music Post)
    Friday, January 27: Julia at Rex Robot Reviews (Author This or That List) 

    Monday, January 30: Heidi at The Readiacs (When I’m Not Writing)
    Tuesday, January 31: Kristen T at Seeing Night Reviews (Review)
    Wednesday, February 1: Ivy at Ivy Reads (Author Interview)
    Thursday, February 2: Lili at Chica Reader (Review)
    Friday, February 3: Christie at The Fiction Enthusiast (Character This or That: Mo) 

    Monday, January 16, 2012

    Indelible Events - Blogger and Writer chats

    Indelible Events (Blogger and Writers)

    As some of you know, a group 25 indie authors called the Indelibles launched this week with a Kindle Fire giveawayThe lucky winner was Chris Fenimore. 

    Now, we have two more exciting events coming this week:

    (*this means bloggers who review children's books on their blogs)

    If you are a book blogger only - we are having a special appreciation chat to discuss what we all love - books. The Indelibles will also be giving away a slew of books.

    Tuesday, Jan 17th from 8-9 pm EST on Coverit.com (Chat deets will be sent out Monday. It will only be sent out to the bloggers who fill out the INVITE FORM form with a Yes or maybe. So you need to email me for the INVITE if you want to attend.)

    Leave me a comment or email me at shelli@srjohannes.com and I can add you to the invite. (BOOK BLOGGERS ONLY)


    Don't worry writers - we would NEVER forget about you. :) We are also having a special writer chat where the Indelibles will chat about indie pubbing, writing, book marketing, and more. Once again, the Indelibles will be giving away a slew of books.

    Jan 18th, Wed right before #yalitchat from 8-9 EST. Chat deets will be posted on Tuesday on each Indelible's blog and the main site.

    We hope to see you there!

    Thursday, January 12, 2012

    Bookanistas and Winners

    Winners of my Indelible Giveaways - chosen by random.org 
    Note : the kindle fire winner will be announced on The Indelible blog
    1. Untraceable (ebook)  Helen Hartman
    2. Untraceable (PB) - Jessirae
    3. Amazon gift card 10$ - Diana
    4. Shiver (HB) - Ashley Ziemer
    5. Beautiful creatures (HB) - Beastly Blogger
    6. Beautiful chaos (HB) - Kaylee Hamblin
    7. Tempetuous (HB) - Cubbiesgirl
    8. The Lying Game (HB) - Lisa Ard
    9. SpiritBound (HB) - cvelazquez
    10. Splendor (HB) - Melora
    Winners of my Untraceable blogger appreciation (my way of thanking those who signed up to help in my blog tour and reviews)

    1) a free book giveaway for your blog - DL Hammon
    2) a 1 hour consultation with me about marketing or anything else Shannon ODonnell
    3) a $10 Amazon card. - Mai Lee

    Winners of Untraceable PreParty Buzz

    1) One $10 Amazon card - Sheri Larsen
    2) A stack of YA or MG books  (you can choose) - Meredeth
    3) A 1 hour consulting session with me for free (can be on writing, indie pubbing, marketing, etc) - 
    Kate Hawkings
    4) Query critique or one hour consultation (MG or YA) - Christina Farley

    all winners email me at shelli@srjohannes.com for details and with an address


    Check out the Bookanista Posts today!

    Christine Fonseca  introduces some fabulous reads for 2012
    Stasia Ward Kehoe takes a shine to A MILLION SUNS and UNDER THE NEVER SKY
    Veronica Rossi  adores EVERNEATH
    Debra Driza is in a frenzy over LARKSTORM with giveaway!
    Katy Upperman  sings the praises of BEFORE I DIE
    Shannon Messenger delves into DOUBLE with an arc giveaway

    Sunday, January 08, 2012

    Indelibles - Join our Kindle Fire Giveaway!

    The Indelibles are a group of 25 fun, fierce, 
    and fabulous indie authors who have banded together to support each other and the indie community.
    In celebration of our official launch, we are giving away a KINDLE FIRE! (yes, I know we are a whole bunch of kewl!) 
    If you’d like to start at the beginning of the INDELIBLES ON FIRE GIVEAWAY BLOG HOP, then please start here for the details and rules.
    Yesterday, I talked about why I pulled this group of fun, fierce, and fabulous indie authors together. Simple. They supported me when I felt alone. When I was down and out. As soon as I announced Untraceable was coming out, a lot of these authors reached out to me and helped me figure out my way. Some, I met along the way and had an instant connection.
    Today, we celebrate our launch with a Kindle Fire Contest, chats, and giveaways.
    Kindle Fire Contest
    This contest starts at 12:01 AM tonight, early Mon morning) and ends 12:01 AM EST (early Thurs morning). The winner will be posted here on this blog next Monday.

    You have to do a couple things:
    1) You have to follow the Indelible blog, twitter, and Facebook. (not so bad right?)
    2) You have to get the SECRET PHRASE by getting the KEYWORD off each of our blogs. The first keyword is on the Indelible Post today. The keywords are easy to find. They are in bold at the bottom of every post. (we wouldn't make it too hard :)
    3) Then, you fill out the form on The Indelible page and submit your entry.
    For an extra entry - tweet about the contest!
    Indelible Blog Hop

    • If you are already mid-hop, then welcome to your next stop! (If this is your first stop, please start here for the details and rules.)
    • The secret word and the next link to the next stop are at the end of this post.
    • Don’t forget to make a note of the keyword at the end of every blog post - the words spell out a phrase you will need to enter on the Indelible form.
    Other Events
    • We are be having a “blogger” chat on Tues, Jan 17th from 8-9 EST.
    • We are also having a chat for all you writers/authors chat next Wed, Jan 18th from 8-9 EST to answer questions about self/indie pubbing along with some great giveaways. 
    • Watch the Indelible blog Thursday or Friday for more details on the blogger and writer chat.
    My Giveaway 

    I am giving away over 10 prizes: an Amazon gift card, an ebook and paperback of Untraceable, and a stack of YA books and arcs.
    • Sign up for my newsletter, twitterand follow my author FB
    • Comment on this post that you did.
    • I will enter you based on your comment. This is on the honor system.
    Note: Only followers of my blog can win. You must be in the US for any shipping of books; But, international readers can enter for the ebooks and Amazon gift card.

    Blog Hop Word: AND
    Next Stop in The Blog Hop is Cory 

    Have fun! :)

    My Indelible Story

    As some of you know, I decided to independently publish Untraceable last September - at a time when I was at my lowest point in my writing career. A time when a lot of people gave up on me. A time when I felt I had failed and had no writing future.

    As I started embarking on the indie process, I found out more about the Indie community, (a community I didn't even know existed). I slowly began to realize how many wonderful, committed, and talented authors there were out there - doing what I was doing. Trying to find a way in an industry that we all loved.

    And most of all, the indie authors embraced me completely - they were so helpful and supportive and they did not hesitate to take me under their wing and help me.

    At a time when I felt so alone.

    Over that time, I met 25 wonderful indie authors who I admired and connected with. I reached out to them and formed a support group where we all could benefit from each other's experience. Since last fall, we have banned together to support each other - through the long and often difficult process of indie pubbing - as well as help support other indie authors we meet along the way.

    Well tomorrow - we launch that group - the Indelibles! The 25 authors included are listed on the side of the blog and they each have wonderful books to share with you (Books Page).

    Launch Party Events

    To celebrate the launching of this group, we are having a PAR-TEE!! :)
    • We are hosting a Kindle Fire giveaway this week.
    • We are doing a Blog Hop with tons of giveaways from each Indelible on each blog.
    • We are hosting a special Blogger chat this Wed 1/11 from 8-9 PM EST to discuss writing and books.
    • And we invite all of you to a special Writer Chat next Wed 1/18 from 8-9 EST to discuss any indie pubbing questions as well as offer more giveaways. (More deets announced Thursday).
    Hope to see you there tomorrow! :)

    Friday, January 06, 2012

    IndieView: Susan Bischoff (Talent Chronicles)

    Today, Susan Bischoff stops by to talk about her indie experience:

    Tell us about yourself

    I’m just a girl who wants superhero romance! Is that so much to ask? Why must it always be a tragedy? Why does Angel walk away? Why did Wonder Woman go back home after the end of season 1 and WWII, then come back, work with Steve Trevor’s grandson, and still not hook up? Seriously! And let’s not even talk about Superman Returns, okay? Let’s. Just. Not. 

    Tell us about your Talented series

    The Talent Chronicles is about teens with supernatural abilities in a world where those abilities are illegal. These are kids trying to figure out who they are, while at the same time trying to hide it to avoid arrest by a government agency. The series also has strong romantic elements--because that's what I like. So far, the series has been about a seventeen year old girl named Joss, who has been raised by a very protective dad who has discouraged her from making friends in order to keep her ability a secret. When a new girl at school decides to befriend her, and won't take no for an answer, Joss's world is opened up to new experiences, friends, a boyfriend--and a whole lot of trouble.

    How did you get started on your self pubbed journey?

    I had become frustrated with the negativity surrounding traditional publishing, to an extent that it didn't seem worth pursuing any longer, and I put writing aside entirely to concentrate on other creative pursuits. When I learned about ebook publishing from some writer friends, it seemed to be exactly what I was looking for. I jumped in and went back to work. 

    What advice do you have for authors looking at self-pubbing?

    Take your time and understand that it's probably going to take time to get where you want to be. Even most traditionally published authors support themselves in another line of work until they have several books published. So don't be upset when you can't buy a new house in the first year. Seems obvious, but somehow a lot of people seem to focus on a few uber-successful outliers and fail to realize there are outliers in any field. And also on the subject of taking time, take time to make sure you're putting out the best work you can. Find someone who will actually tell you what you need to know about your work instead of what they think you want to hear. There's nothing more valuable than a good critique. 

    What is next for you?

    Right now I'm working on the third Talent Chronicles novel, Heroes Under Siege. Not sure when that's going to be ready.  

    What is your favorite word? What is your least favorite word?

    My favorite word is enchanting

    Least favorite is a bit harder and what comes to mind is the word challenge used when it's really a problem.

    What are your new years resolutions for 2012?

    I call those New Year's Intentions--to take a bit of the pressure off. This year's Intentions include--but are not limited to--keeping my sink clear of dishes, writing more regularly and working on discipline rather than sporadic inspiration, spending more time with real life people, doing more with my daughter, keeping off the weight I've lost, and I have quite the list of decluttering Intentions. 

    You can follow Susan on TwitterFacebook, or her blog

    You can also purchase Talent Chronicles (Hush Money) at Amazon or B&N