Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Author Interview: Harmony Stalter

My name is Harmony Stalter. I have been a professional writer since 2005. I have written 6 books and published traditionally, but have turned to self publishing. My last three books, a stand alone short story, a poetry book, and my current release Two Romantic, Two Suspenseful: A Short Story Compilation has all been self published.

How long have you been publishing?
I have been self publishing for three years.

Tell us about your latest book.   

Two Romantic, Two Suspenseful has four very different short stories.

The Former Student - A shy girl returns to her school to see the teacher she has always had a crush on still there. When fantasy becomes a reality for them both, the teacher becomes the student.

The Stolen Child - A mother chooses to ignore the warning given to her by a strange and mysterious woman. When her child is taken, it becomes a race against time to rescue the child alive.

My Death- A woman chooses to put her career first, but at what consequence. Witness the accounts of a break up gone terribly wrong.

Dancing the Night Away - Two people, who have been hurt countless times, finally find love in the unlikeliest of places.

Is writing your full time career?

Yes, writing is my full time career. I have been freelance writing since 2005 and released my first book in 2010.

Do you see writing as a hobby or career? 

I definitely see writing as a career. Having written countless articles and ghostwritten many books, this is a career path I see myself in for the rest of my life.

What made 
you decide to become a self published author?

I decided to become a self published author, because I wanted to be able to give the reader a better price for the books I write. When you publish traditionally, you have no say in the price of the book. I do not believe books should have a high price tag.  

What is your favorite part of being self published?

My favorite part of self-publishing is really being hands on when it comes to promoting the book and talking to the readers.

Do you do your own promotion, or hire someone?

I do my own promotion when it comes to my books. I like being very hands on when it comes to promoting it.

What has been the most productive tool for promoting your book? 

Any form of social media is one of the best tools to use. You can promote your book on a number of different places.

Do you have Facebook/Twitter? How effective are they as promotional tools? 

I do have a Facebook and Twitter. They have been very effective promotional tools. I have actually used Facebook’s boost post feature and received more likes than I would have had I not used it.

What is the most important piece of advice you can give someone just starting out in self publishing? 

Promotion is the best way to get your book out there. If you have social media pages, use them. Keep business cards handy, because you never know when you are going to need one.

If a publisher came knocking, would you make the switch? Why or why not?
I have been the traditional publishing route. I do not think I will go back, because I prefer to have the say as to how my books are marketed and the price of the book.

What does your family think of your writing career?
When I first began, they were unsure if I was going to be able to make it. But when I received my first job, and the next one after that they began to believe in it. They have since become firm believers in my career choice.

How important are reviews to making sales?

Reviews are one of the most important parts of making sales. Reviews allow a book to rank hire on the sales list, which brings it to the front page of a book sale site. This allows more people to see it and more sales to be gained.

How do you deal with bad reviews?

I do not mind bad reviews. They give me a chance to see what people may not like about my writing and give me a chance to improve it. I take the bad with the good. They are both equally important in my eyes.

What would you like average readers to know about self publishing?

I would like for the average reader to know that although a person is not traditionally published it does not mean that their work is not good. An author pours their heart and soul into a book no matter if they are traditionally published or self published. Every writer deserves to be read by someone.

Do you go to writing conventions? Why or why not?

Unfortunately, I have not had the opportunity to attend a writing convention. There are none in my area, as I live in such a small town.

Why do you write?

I write to satisfy a need. Writing helps me clear my head and allows me to relieve myself of the stories that seem to take up residence in there.

If you had to stop writing tomorrow, what would you do?

I think I would have a job in sales and marketing.

If you could talk shop with any other author, who would it be?

I would like to have round table sit down and speak to Patricia Cornwell, Stephen King, Sue Grafton, and Robert E. Bailey.

What have you learned from reading other people's work?

What I have learned is that no two writers are the same. The concept behind their books may be similar in nature, but no one writes in the same way. I believe this makes the book world a richer more well rounded place.

Do you read more ebooks or physical copies?  

While I am enjoying the ebook format and my ereader, I still do read physical copies of books. I have to say that for every ebook I purchase, I do purchase a physical copy of another book.

Do you think the traditional publishing format is an endangered species?

I do not feel that traditional publishing will ever leave. There are many authors that long to have their book in the same publishing house as some of our most famous authors. I believe that if the traditional publishing houses would combine with some of the self publishing sites, then a writer could have the best of both worlds.

What would the consequences be of the demise of the traditional bookstore?

If the traditional bookstore was to completely go out of business, then I think authors and readers would suffer the consequences. There are still many people who prefer to hold a book in their hands and are not able to make the switch to an ereader format. There are also many authors who will not publish books in the ereader format. If the traditional bookstore disappears, then there will be less readers in the world and we will all suffer a great loss.


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