It was Timon who said “If you want something done, you have got to do it yourself” – Lion King
Self publishing is spreading like wild fire across Continents and it would seem that the major question of upcoming African writers is “How do I sell my book?”. The revolution in music and movie industry is unbelievably exceptional! Anyone asking about publishing? Your guess is as good as mine. Zero revolution! No hype, No reality TV shows, No support. Nothing. I shudder at the stories unwritten…
In my quest for how best
Unen Ameji writers can sell their works, I met Alana Munro-The Author That Supports Authors. Her debut book? A bestseller! Book Marketer/owner of Reach for the Stars – a quality yet affordable book marketing service ran by authors for authors. Talk about finding answers in unexpected places. Hehehe. I had to get in touch with her. I did and it was awesome!
In this short exclusive interview with interesting and easy-going Alana, Alana answers top 11 questions and tells of the right mix to becoming a bestseller!
Q: “WOMEN BEHAVING BADLY – EXPOSING THE TRUTH ABOUT FEMALE FRIENDSHIP” is a catchy title? What inspired it?
Thank you, I thought it summed up exactly what my book was about. I wanted to talk openly about how some women behave with other women. I had experienced so many toxic women in my life and I felt there needed to be a book available that at least tried to understand the complicated nature of female relationships. Sadly, not all women are nurturing and supportive of each other.
Q: What is the message? Did you envisage the number of response you got when you published it?
The book is a straight-talking account of my own personal experiences with females throughout my life so far. The book focuses on the common toxic behaviours that can go on between women. I spend a lot of time revealing my own painful and shocking experiences and analysing the negative behaviours. Why do some women behave so badly with their female friends? What’s really going on? What is motivating these toxic women? I also show the reader how it is possible to have healthier and happier friendships with women.
I was unsure how the book would be received. I of course feared women becoming angry and defensive. The book is not attacking women though, it encourages women to look honesty at their relationships with each other. We deserve to feel happy and safe in our friendships.
It was amazing to read many emails from women thanking me for being honest about how bad it can get between women sometimes. Many women felt relieved that they were not alone anymore.
Q: In your opinion, what key factors must writers employ in putting together a bestselling book?
It is essential that authors write about something they are passionate about. If you are bored writing your book, expect the reader to also feel bored. It is also important that authors hire someone who is qualified in editing. I thought I had found all my mistakes, but after I allowed an editor near my manuscript I discovered I had missed about twenty! It’s amazing what you miss as a writer.
And never ever ignore the importance of marketing. Target potential readers directly and get your book noticed. Too many authors write a book and then wonder why no one buys their book. It is exhausting and constant – but authors need to be good at marketing and tapping into buyer markets.
Q: As a self-publisher, what are your greatest challenges? What are the perks?
The greatest challenge is having to do everything. The do-it list can be mind blowing! I had lists all over my house at one point. If you have the funds, you can hire people to do most jobs. On the plus side, you learn so much just publishing one book. You rely on yourself and discover so much about the art of publishing books.
The perks are the control authors have over their own work. But you have to ensure your work is good quality – too many indie authors get lazy and it gives us a bad name. For example, too many indie authors don’t bother to properly format their E-books.
Q: How best does a self-publisher edit work and market it?
I hire a professional to edit my work. It’s best to let another pair of eyes look through and highlight the mistakes often missed!
I market mostly via my blog – http://alanamunroauthor.com/ and through my social media networks.
Q: What are you working on now?
I am working on a few different book ideas but at the moment I am mostly busy with my book marketing business.
Q: Tell us more about your book tour/marketing platform-Reach For The Stars? How does it benefit African Writers?
I am now offering affordable book marketing for all authors from all around the world. I offer services to help authors obtain quality book reviews, blog tours, book blasts, cover reveals etc. I know how expensive and constant marketing can be. I have been there and done it already! I have a marketing and business degree and the personal experience of making my own book a success.
Q: If you were to speak to upcoming writers, what would be your opening and closing statements?
Keep on writing! Anyone who achieved anything had to work very hard at it.
Build connections with other like-minded people. Writers need emotional support from other writers.
Q: What do you do for fun? How best do you get refreshed for new inspiration?
I love to chill out with my family, watch a funny movie, drink some red wine. I enjoy the simple pleasures of life. I also enjoy some quiet time alone to reflect and refresh myself.
Q: Your best artiste? Holiday spot? Food?
I love Spain. I have stayed inland, away from the busier coastal resorts and it was amazing.
I am addicted to cheese. If only I could live on it alone with some olives, pasta, breads and avocado but I suspect my tummy would grow too big!
Q: Where do you see Alana in next five years?
I’d like to have another book released, keep working on my busy blog, work on more creative projects and continue to market authors.
Thank you Alana. I know we have more to do on getting
Nigerian African Authors the platform to becoming bestsellers and reaching a larger audience.