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September 10, 2013

Linda Steinberg: Why I Joined the Revolution


There’s a revolution going on in the publishing world. In just a few short years, e-book sales, especially in the romance genre, have climbed to almost fifty percent of the market. Brick and mortar book stores are closing, and those remaining are limiting their book shelf space. And authors are proudly publishing their own books.

When I first started writing, self-publishing was called ‘vanity’ publishing. If a writer was desperate enough to see her name on a book cover, she (or he) could pay to have their book printed, and sell it out of the trunk of their car. But these writers were not considered ‘real’ authors. A ‘serious’ writer waited months, years, to hear back from some New York publishing house hoping to win the brass ring—a publishing contract.

I was one of those few. I sold the first book I ever submitted to the first house I sent it to. Lucky? Absolutely. Sure, I had a good book. But I was also in the right place at the right time. A new line was opening, and I just happened to have a book that fit it.

Unfortunately, that line folded. And the stars have never aligned quite so perfectly for me since. But I’ve never stopped writing. Or believing that there’s a market for what I write, if only I could make my books available to readers.

Why did I decide to join the Indie Revolution? Of course, for the usual reasons.

I wanted to see my books out there again. For as long as I wanted them out there. Giving them time to find a following.

But there’s another, less selfish reason: I believe in the revolution.

I believe in the empowerment of the author. I believe that the person who creates the product has the right to control all aspects of it. Cover art, format, editing. Distribution. Promotion. You can do some of the work yourself to save on expenses, or you can hire experts. Who work for you.

My cover artist did a phenomenal job of designing my first book cover (see below), but she worked with my vision. And willingly tweaked each draft until I was completely satisfied. Squee! That’s exciting.

So, allow me to plug my book (You knew that was coming, right?)

The French Deception is a romantic suspense novel set in Paris. It involves stolen identity, a terrorist bombing, both good guys and bad guys chasing the wrong suspect, and oh, yes, did I mention romance? At the top of the Eiffel Tower? It’s available now on Amazon and most other e-platform. Or use the Buy links on my website, I’ve included an excerpt from the book below. And in honor of my first week live online, I’m giving away a free copy to someone who posts here today.

Excerpt from The French Deception

Late! Paul Bernard dashed out of the Metro station and bolted up rue de Faubourg de St Honore toward the British Embassy, holding his jacket over his head to ward off the light morning mist.

Just as he got to the corner the traffic light changed. Bloody hell! Paul shifted his weight impatiently from one foot to the other as Smart cars, bicycles and the occasional luxury sedan swooshed past him, dodging potholes and pedestrians. He was way past due at work, thanks to an unexpected but very pleasurable morning romp in the sack.

He’d woken when it was still dark to Colette’s arousing hand on his pecker, and half-dreamed her riding astride his responding erection. After the brief but immensely satisfying encounter, she’d rolled out of bed to shower and dress before hurrying off to an early call for an important audition. “You don’t have to get up yet,” she’d said in her bedroom voice, kissing his ear. “Go back to sleep.”

And he had. So blissfully knackered that he’d slept past his alarm, so dead to the world he didn’t even remember hearing it ring. He smiled, thanking whatever beneficent force had seen fit to bestow upon a mild-mannered computer geek the favors of that incredibly sexy French coquette.

The crowd of pedestrians shoved at him from behind and Paul stepped off the curb. Blinding light flashed and a deafening boom sent shockwaves strong enough to knock him backwards. Debris flew past, burning chunks of plasterboard and metal. The dark, billowing smoke twined around his neck, thick and choking.

Paul blinked and wiped the soot from his eyes. He stared at the British Embassy, half destroyed, in flames.

Someone had bombed his bloody offices. And if he’d gotten to work just five minutes earlier...he could be dead.

Publishing your own book is scary. And a lot of work. But it’s also quite fulfilling, and yes, it’s fun. Someone once described me as ‘adventurous,’ and hell, yes, this is an adventure.

Have you joined the revolution yet? As a reader, you almost certainly have. Do you buy more of your books online or in bookstores? Are you more likely to take a chance on a new author because e-books are more affordable? Do you care or even notice if a book you’re considering purchasing is published by the author or a major publishing house?

Vive la Revolucion!


chris keniston said...

whew - for a few seconds there I was afraid we were either burning bras again or heaven forbid - I'd have to dump all my tea in the gulf!

the publishing world she is definitely changing - and your new cover looks Fahbulous!

such a good read too - I love your writing.

Liese said...

Viva la revolucion!

Can't wait to read your book!


Sylvia said...

Viva la revolucion! It's a fun ride and I'm enjoying it very much. I published 9 books with a traditional publisher and then the editor left and the lines went away and I never sold another book. Today, I have complete control and I love it, though it's a lot of work. May you sell many many books and I can't wait to read your story.

Linda said...

thanks for the cheers and encouragement, ladies. No bra burning or tea dumping, Chris. And we definitely wouldn't want to dump our wine into the gulf

Pamela Stone said...

I've never been much of an activist, but this is one revolution I'm right in the middle of. I'm having a blast with this whole being in control deal. Not that I'm a control freak or anything. Ha!

Great cover and for anyone who hasn't read it, great book. Best of luck!

Kathy Ivan said...

Love having control over what I do and where and when I put my work out for everybody to read.

Linda's book is fabulous--you all need to rush out and grab your copy.

Linda said...

It is a great feeling, isn't it, Kathy? And thanks, Pam, for dragging me kicking and screaming along on this ride. You knew I'd love it.

Vicki Batman, sassy writer said...

Hi, Linda! So happy you could join the rest of us in revolution. As you know, I do both-epub and indie pub. And am very happy.

All I can say is, it's about time we get to read your work!

Liz Lipperman said...

Your new cover is fabulous, Linda. I, for one embrace the new revolution, all while still fighting the old one. I have to tell you that my indie books have covers and are just as professional as my NY pubbed ones. And Viva la Revolution, for sure.

Looking forward to reading this one.

Phyllis said...

Here! Here! Viva la revolution!

I'm not out there, but working on it! Like so many, I'm tired of hearing...' It's a good story, but doesn't fit our line...'

I'm taking over!

Karilyn Bentley said...

Hi Linda! Loved the excerpt! Can't wait to read the book!!

Linda said...

Thanks to everyone for stopping by. Glad to see so many compadres in the revolution. It's not the only way to go. And it is a lot of hard work. But dang it,I do like having that control.

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