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Indie Author Showcase: Marc Nash November 26, 2012

Posted by Carolyn Burns Bass in alternative publishers, science fiction, self-publishing.
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Marc Nash in #litvhat

Marc Nash: Guest host for November 26, 2012

Marc Nash is no stranger to #litchat. He regularly participates in the weekly discussions as @21stCscribe. He joins us today in our bi-annual Indie Author Showcase to discuss his approach to writing and publishing in the indie universe.

Nash’s latest novel is Time After Time, a sardonic, sci-fi, romance where the object of seduction is the target of a time-traveling assassin. In the Yoni world of the future, women rule in a peaceful civilization without war and conflict. Men are nothing but emasculated sex slaves and working grunts. When F-10, the chosen assassin, is sent back in time to kill Hayley, the mother of the future leader of the women’s revolt, he’s completely unprepared for the violent world that awaits. And since time has developed this arc across multitude parallel worlds, the assassin must carry out his mission in each one. Playing in the background of the story is a D.J. who spins songs to communicate with the thugs his gangster brother uses to rule and terrorize the streets wherein Hayley lives. The psychological effect on F-10 as he completes his mission in each parallel world plays out in dark Groundhog Day-esque repetitions until the final scenario.

Marc Nash has published five books on Kindle and signed a contract with US indie publisher Temporary Infinity for a collection of his short stories to be released in 2013. He spent 20 years in the counterculture, working at Rough Trade Record Shop. He currently works with a freedom of expression NGO, which monitors censorship around the world. Nash lives in London with wife and twin boys, whose soccer team he has managed and provided him more sleepless nights than anything in the literature world!

Follow Marc Nash on Twitter: @21stCscribe.

Aliens and Others May 2, 2011

Posted by Carolyn Burns Bass in alternative publishers, digital readers, e-books, science fiction, self-published authors, small presses.
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Aurelio O'Brien

We are all aliens in some way or another. Step into a country club without an invitation and you’re an illegal alien. Try to join a secret society without a sponsor and at best you are ignored. You wear a burqa in a suburban neighborhood and you’re eyed with suspicion. Short, smart, autistic, or artistic, in middle school, everyone’s an alien. Lift your hands in worship at a traditional Christian church and you’re ostracized. Worse, you’re gay in a fundamental church and you’re not only an alien, you’re a sinner. This week in #litchat we’re discussing novels which explore alienation as a theme.

On Friday, Aurelio O’Brien joins us as guest host of #litchat. O’Brien’s timely new novel, GENERATION EXTRATERRESTRIAL, may be sorted into science fiction, but like the best of that genre, it contains keen observations on what it is to be an alien in a homogenistically inclined society.

When respected scientist, Dr. Grace Brown, is sent on a preposterous mission to examine a group of nutcases who claim to be pregnant with alien babies, she is outraged. Her affront turns to activism when the crazies blow everyone’s mind with the birth to seven sentient lifeforms as diverse as fauna and flora can be. Joining forces with a tabloid journalist and photographer, she becomes the champion for the extraterrestrial children and their families as they grow up in a culture of misunderstanding, discrimination, and alienation. With astute observations keyed with charming prose and light-fast pacing, GENERATION EXTRATERRESTRIAL is a book for today and many more tomorrows.

As a book, GENERATION EXTRATERRESTRIAL is a type of alien to mainstream publishing. O’Brien, whose professional background is in film and animation, released his first book, EVE, in the tradition of independent filmmakers. Because of the nurturing culture of independent film, O’Brien didn’t expect to be snubbed by mainstream publishing and media, yet he found roadblocks to reviews and other publicity. EVE sold well with O’Brien’s out-of-the-box marketing, so he forged ahead with GENERATION EXTRATERRESTRIAL with the same enthusiasm for indie expression.

The initial release of GENERATION EXTRATERRESTRIAL is a ten ePisode eSerial designed specifically for hand held readers and mobile phone reading apps. As each successive ePisode follows GENERATION EXTRATERRESTRIAL from infancy to adulthood, further literary and marketing innovations include an elaborate GENERATION EXTRATERRESTRIAL eUniverse: embedded within each ePisode is a hyperlink to a website associated with the story and/or a character. These sites contain links to the web-based download location for the next ePisode. Readers will experience the added dimension of exploring characters’ blogs, story-related sites, and joining a fully supported facebooklike alien/human social network. Publisher Bad Attitude Books plans to release a limited deluxe edition collectable hardcover at a later date.

Aurelio O’Brien grew up in a raucous household full of uniquely gifted siblings in the heart of Silicon Valley before there were PC’s, cell phones, and flat-screen TV’s. His father worked in aerospace, on the Hubble Space Telescope and NASA’s Space Shuttle, nurturing young Aurelio in an eclectic environmental medley of suburbia, cherry orchards, and cutting-edge technology. O’Brien’s quirky creative talents led him to a successful career as an illustrator, animator, and graphic designer.

Download the first chapter of GENERATION EXTRATERRESTRIAL.

Follow Aurelio O’Brien on Twitter: @AurelioOBrien.

Indie Author Showcase June 20, 2010

Posted by Carolyn Burns Bass in alternative publishers, fantasy, literary fiction, self-publishing, YA fiction.
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June 21-25, 2010

It’s that time of year again for #litchat’s Indie Author Showcase. While traditional publishers remain the standard of success for authors, the stigma of self-publishing is vanishing as indie authors whose work falls through the cracks of commercial publishing trends are finding success on their own. Indies of film, music and other arts are celebrated, isn’t it time to salute the finest of indie authors?

This week we’re featuring three authors who have chosen to take their writing career into their own hands, and each of them in different ways.

Monday, June 21: Dan Halloway — Digital Publishing and Community

Dan Holloway is a writer, blogger, music journalist, theologian, arts promoter and mental health campaigner. He is a founder member of Year Zero Writers, a collective of contemporary fiction writers set up to give people a place to write directly for readers, free from commercial consideration. He is the author of the novel Songs from the Other Side of the Wall, and the collection of stories and poems (life:) razorblades included. Dan’s short stories, articles about publishing, and journalism have appeared in places as diverse as PANK, One in Four Magazine, Editor Unleashed, Emprise Review, The Indie Handbook, and the urban writing biennial XCP: Streetnotes.

Dan has organized cross-arts events from the Free e-Day Festival, to the current Year Zero Live tour, using untraditional venues from music clubs to art galleries and tattoo parlors. His latest project is eight cuts gallery, a real and virtual space designed to blur completely the boundaries between literature and other arts.

Follow Dan Holloway on Twitter: @agnieszkasshoes

Wednesday, June 23: D.R. Whitney — Established a Publishing Company

D.R. Whitney wrote The Last Princess as the first in a series she calls The Goddess Prophecies, an epic fantasy adventure featuring a contemporary heroine drawn to the mythic isle of Avalon. An adult version of The Last Princess was originally offered by a small press, but during #litchat we’ll learn why Whitney reclaimed her project, revised it for YA, and established her own publishing company to bring it out. In addition to the trade paperback, Whitney has produced an audio version of the book a lush soundtrack and a theatrical delivery. A film adaptation is claimed to be in the works. Savvy marketing, a million-dollar budget and relentless belief in her work keeps Whitney in the game.

Whitney’s journey to The Goddess Prophecies began in Britain where she spent several years researching Celtic myth and legend. She is currently completing work on her second installment , entitled: “The Last Princess and The Staff of Power.” Whitney lives in Los Angeles with her music producer husband, James and three Pekingese.

Follow D.R. Whitney on Twitter: @goddessprophecies

Friday, June 25: William H. Johnson — iUniverse (self-publishing house)

William H. Johnson comes from a background of theater and film, where independent artists are highly respected for working outside the mainstream. With this background it was natural for him to go it alone, rather than pursuing a deal with a traditional publishing house. Johnson received a bachelor’s degree from James Madison University where he developed a passion for theater. Since relocating to Southern California in 1997, William has directed numerous plays from David Ives one acts All in the Timing to Samuel Beckett’s masterpiece, Waiting for Godot. In 2004 he began training and developing The Magic Meathands improv comedy ensemble, a performing company whose mission of com-mune-edy outreach has been blogged about on idealist.org and featured on CNN Headline News: Local Edition.

In 2009 he began writing essays on race in America and political commentary that have been published in three different regional newspapers. Johnson’s first novel, The Dark Province: Son of Duprin, was released in March 2010.

Follow William H. Johnson on Twitter: @AuthorWilliam

Topic of the Week for April 20-24: Alternative Avenues to Publishing April 19, 2009

Posted by Carolyn Burns Bass in alternative publishers, self-publishing, weekly topics.
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Traditional publishing houses are feeling double the crunch from the recent economic downturn. Not only are budgets being cut, but big publishing is undergoing a transformation as e-books are making a significant impact in the way books are published. The Kindle and other e-readers (Sony and iPhone) are reducing the amont of printed and bound books. On top of that, self-publishing giants like Lulu, iUniverse, and Amazon’s BookSurge are making it easy for writers to print their books outside the big publishing arena.

This week we’ll chat with self-pubbed authors, as well as independent editors, publicists, e-blook authors, self-publishing brands and POD printers about alternate routes to publishing. Monday will be open chat.

Elizabeth Burton

Elizabeth Burton

On Wednesday, we’ll talk with ElizabethK. Burton, who has been executive editor or Zumaya Publications since 2003 and took charge of the publisher’s operations in July 2006. Zumaya was established in 1999 by authors Tina Havemen and Diana Kent Jones and incorporated in 2006.

Initially, Zumaya opted for print on demand (POD) for the simple reason it was the economical way to produce print books. Zumaya does not require any author financial participation; set-up and production costs have always been Zumaya’s responsibility. As Elizabeth became immersed in the business of publishing–up till then she was a writer and editor-she saw the wastefulness of the existing business model as unacceptable. (Overprinting and remaindering books.) After some research, she determined POD can be more economical and environmentally friendly.

zumayalogoAccording to Elizabeth, Zumaya’s inventory-free business model distinguishes them among other alternative literary publishers. Zumaya doesn’t do print runs unless they’ve been ordered. Zumaya is committed to presenting quality books by talented authors and leaving behind as little environmental footprint as possible.

Carmen Shirkey

Carmen Shirkey

l recap the week’s discussion with guest host and author Carmen Shirkey. Carmen published her novel The List through BookSurge.

Carmen received two degrees in Rhetoric and Communications and History from the University of Virginia (she’s a crazy Wahoos fan) where she was also a member of Alpha Xi Delta sorority. She then proceeded to become a gypsy – moving from city to city. Currently, she resides in Virginia, but who knows where she’ll end up next. Her cat, Pooh Bear, who is also a character in The List, would prefer to stay in one place long enough to adequately mark his territory.

The List, by Carmen Shirkey (BookSurge)

Aside from writing, Carmen’s passion is travel. She once got a fortune cookie that said “you will step on the soil of many countries” and took it seriously. She hopes that enough people will buy her book so that she can go on permanent vacation, instead of packing all her travel into two measly weeks a year. That’s how much vacation she gets in her full-time gig as a Web editor. Carmen Shirkey was born in Staunton, VA, and The List is her debut novel.