1. Would you ever write under another name?
Sure, I already write under Monica O’Brien and Monica Leonelle.
2. Does being a novelist change the way you read? (Are you more critical of others?)
Yes, unfortunately. I’m an editor myself (specializing in the marketability of books), and I’m really big on creating fascinating hooks. (If you are a writer you can find out if your first 1000 words are hooking here: http://proseonfire.com/post/20340477218/prose-on-fire-first-1000-free-email-consultation.) I definitely find myself editing a book as I read it, sometimes. There are a couple books in the last year that have not made me feel this way, specifically Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare. It’s so romantic and lovely and sweet, and I completely got lost in it! So I wasn’t mentally editing as I read it and couldn’t even tell you now about the story structure. The book just worked.
If anyone wants to read it, it’s actually the second book in the Infernal Devices, so start with the first one, Clockwork Angel.
3. What do you think the world would be like without novels?
Funny you ask that—in Socialpunk, the 2198 world *is* without novels, at least in their present form. Everything is mixed media—text, images, audio. It would be a tragedy for me because I express myself best in writing. But I imagine it wouldn’t affect the majority of the world.
4. Do you feel building a social media presence (through Facebook, Twitter, blogging, etc.) as an author is critical in marketing a book?
I 100% do not. This is probably one of my pet peeves, actually, because people spend so much time and money doing the social stuff when it doesn’t lead to their goals. I have a Twitter account and a Facebook page to *interact* with fans, not to *find* fans. Finding fans is a completely different activity altogether and social media is a fairly ineffective means for doing that.
So what works? In my opinion, writers should inject their marketing directly into their manuscripts. Writers often think of marketing as this separate thing from writing, but it’s not at all. 80-90% of books are sold through word-of-mouth and most of the marketability of a book is right there in the manuscript. So even if you are going the traditional route, if you are serious about getting published you should hire an editor to go through your book and see how marketable it is. Traditional publishers are looking for marketable books. It’s a business and they need to make money.
Then, you launch your book by asking people to read it. If it’s any good you’ll start getting word-of-mouth for your book. My goal is to give away one thousand copies of the book during its launch. I’m maybe a fifth of the way there so far? It’s a lot of work, more than most people realize. I write about this stuff constantly on my Prose on Fire newsletter, so if these concepts interest you, you can check it out here: proseonfire.com/free-writer-toolkit
5. Where do you you see yourself in ten years? (aside from the mirror)
Haha… your mirror joke made me laugh. I see myself writing still. I was writing ten years ago, after all. I’d also like to be a mom of a seven year old. I’m 28 already, so I really need to get on the whole parent train pretty soon.
6. If you could only read one book for the rest of your life, what book would it be?
Someone else asked this too! It’s a scary question. It would probably be the seventh Harry Potter book, or maybe the sixth. Either way I’d be completely miserable because one book is a terrible limit!
Thank you so much for joining us today, Monica!
(and I have to say Monica definitely knows how to sell a good story, her prologue to Socialpunk had be enthralled from the first sentence!)
and of course, the GIVEAWAY!
CLICK HERE FOR YOUR CHANCE TO WIN A NEW IPAD, KINDLE FIRE, OR A BRAND SPANKING NEW HARDCOVER COPY OF SOCIALPUNK!
(I’m linking since rafflecopter does NOT want to cooperate with my wordpress theme.)