I’ve been busy on the other side of the writing life, the dreaded side, the one that makes me most nervous: the pre-release side of the game. And it is a game. Please don’t believe I am bragging here; it’s just life—we all have met nice people. I’ve met many authors in the past few years, and more than a few over the decades, authors of all kind, from self-published to Big House denizens—love hanging out and talking about how other writers live in and out of their created worlds. I was lucky enough to receive a personalized copy of Stephen King’s Insomnia, the book he publicized by driving his motorcycle across the country in the mid-90s with stops in only ten bookstores. I worked in one of those ten lucky bookstores, the now-defunct independent bookstore in the Sun Valley Mall called Ex Libris. ~hat tipped off for lost days and lost bookstores~ Does it matter that I’ve been surrounding myself with other authors for almost thirty years? Nope. Not one bit. A favorite quote from a creative writing professor: “If I met half the writers in the world, I wouldn’t read their work.” She was being realistic. There are very few authors—their lives, the way they act in the real world—who can match the quality of their prose.
That being said, I hope my own introverted nature isn’t a turn-off for anyone out there—I’m an introvert with a hyper amount of energy. With authors having to pick up the megaphone and shout out to the world that they have a new book out—doing this mostly all on their own, without big marketing dollars from huge publishing companies—I hear so much about new books and I wish I had more time to read the ones that really really peak my interest. I do love reading literary fiction most of all, literary fiction that dips into the psychological or suspense realms, and it’s rare to find an indie author writing in the same vein, but they are there if you take time to look. Maria Savva is one such terrific writer, and she has a field of books in her backlist to explore; I can’t wait to pick up her forthcoming collection of tales, Delusion and Dreams. Gae-Lynn Woods just released her second novel, and I swear she writes as if a demon is tracking her. Love love loved her first novel The Devil of Light—and can’t wait to crack open her next book. Introverts must rise out of their writing chairs from time to time to let the world know they have a new book out—we must channel the extrovert hidden within, cage it, train it, and release it in small doses. So, here is my official shout:
The official book cover for my next release, The Conversationalist, has been created, and I want to share this with you. The art fits the atmosphere of the literary suspense novella—or eNovella. My mother created this work and simply titled it 005. It is 11 X 14 inches, mixed media on paper, and I am the owner of this work. She loved water, loved sitting on shore and watching the waves, lake or ocean.
Please let me know what you think.
Here is the working Book Description:
There’s something wrong with Patrick. People whisper about him; most want to help him, as if he’s a songless bird with a broken wing, make him a project, set him up on a date with a best friend . . .
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Lovely, heartfelt post, Justin. I think many authors will relate to the differences between writing, and getting out there and promoting. The very nature of our work makes us sensitive souls.
I love your book cover, and watching your writing career develop. So thrilled for you. I look forward to reading The Conversationalist when it is released.
I feel exactly the same, Jane—Dumas created those Musketeers: All for one! Writers and writing groups are a bit like this even though the work is solitary. Thank you for your kindness.
Love, love, love the cover! The blurb sounds interesting too. I’ll be grabbing my copy when it comes out. And I’m glad you’re not afraid to get out of your chair and tell the world. Go forth and conquer!
Cheers, Dionne. The writing life has taken you and I to even larger places, higher heights (a few lows and temporary roadblocks too along the way) over the past year. Nice to get out and stretch. Thank you for your encouragement. Can’t wait to meet at the writing group in Dallas!
Amazing cover! Matches the quality of the story. Best of luck to you!
Thank you very much, Michelle, and I love your writing just as much. Do I repeat the word much too much? hehe I hope the story resonates with readers.
Hey, Justin. I like it, and the book sounds very interesting. I loved what you said about so many books out there that really pull on you, but being unable to read them all. It’s a sad truth. That having been said, I really don’t read enough and hope I get to a place where that changes real soon. Best regards.
I buy new books and when I get them home I think: “Whoops, I can’t start that one until I finish the ten books I’m reading right now.” Always the case. Book junkies have to stick together. Can’t wait to meet you in person next fall, Jimmy. Should be great. Thank you for your thoughts on my upcoming novella release. ~crosses fingers people like the tale~
I am interested in Ex Libris. A search for that led me to your site. When were you there? It became a branch of Iconoclast and then a mobile phone store.
Hi Chris, Ex Libris Bookstore, was an independent bookstore in the Sun Valley, Idaho resort “shopping” mall area when I moved to Sun Valley in 1993. It was small and tiny but served a ton of great readers. I worked there from 1994 to 1996 when I moved to part-time manage another independent bookstore, Chapter One Bookstore, still going strong in Ketchum, the main town, from 1996-2005, when I moved to Washington. Ex Libris changed hands several times since I left, and each ended up being phased out (probably due to costs/rent/new publishing platforms). Hope this information helps.