I’m an Australian romance writer who’s independently published. It was not the path I chose but rather it chose me.
Self Publishing is hard, really hard…..if you want to do well.
Anyone can upload a book onto Amazon, iTunes, Nook or one of the other online sellers, but if you want readers to find it, there is a lot of marketing and promotion behind it. Don’t believe anyone who tells you that it’s easy. It’s not.
In 2015, after 9 years of writing, my debut novel, Falling for Mr Wrong, was published! Hooray! But after the euphoria of being a published writer wore off I realised that my sales hadn’t covered the cost of producing the book. I had a professionally edited and formatted book with a beautiful cover. It wasn’t bringing in all that money I was told by people who really didn’t understand the market. I was disheartened and ready to return to the corporate jungle. But then I was recommended a marketing course for self published writers! There was help available. Brilliant!!!! I enrolled and learnt a lot but the best bit was meeting other self published writers who were also eager to succeed.
I met a number of romance writers who wrote in my sub genre, and they were interested to work with other writers. The result? We worked collaboratively and I’ve been included in THREE boxed sets this year –
By working together, I had exposure to the other writers’ readers and I could get my books out to new romance readers. Bonus!
Sales increased as did my subscriber list.
Working together is fun. Everyone pitches in and does what they do best. There is a lot to organise from the marketing, promotions, cover, blurbs, Facebook parties and so many other details. I’ve loved working with these writers, and have learnt so much.
How often do we hear that writing is a lonely occupation? I’ve heard it many times. Well, I can tell you that this romance writer does not feel lonely at all.
I’m part of a large romance writing community and feel valued amongst my fellow self published writers.
Even better, I have two writers who also live in Melbourne who live near me. Not only friends online but friends who lunch together…. and talk about writing of course!
Successful writers work with other writers. They read each other’s books and promote them to their subscribers. There is no malice and no competition. If there is, you should find new writers to work with.
And to make 2016 even better, I worked collaboratively with Charmaine Ross on New York Romance. We came up with the concept of the Happy Holidays series and loved the idea of having two friends both finding love during the holidays. We’ve linked the stories, in New York Romance, with both friends finding love in New York, thanks to the magic of the holiday season.
For my heroine, Lisa Sassoon, she finds love when she least expects it thanks to the miracle of Chanukah. And for Charmaine’s heroine, Charlotte Cassidy, it’s a touch of Christmas magic that helps her find love.
I love books that are linked. Do you?
A Magical Christmas In Jerusalem
Australian project manager Kiara Lonsdale is career focussed and determined to provide and care for the grandmother who raised her. Taking time off work to vacation has never been high on her agenda, but this year she’s made an exception. She’s helping her gran fulfil a life-long dream by accompanying her on a Christmas to the Holy Land tour.
Jacques Lenoir and his extended family run tours in Israel and he’s committed to their business. Jacques feels responsible for his grandparents’ welfare since they risked their lives, and others’, as operatives in the French Resistance, during the War.
But over romantic dinners in the desert, camel rides, and mud baths at the Dead Sea, sparks fly between Kiara and Jacques. Will this only be a holiday romance or will a touch of Christmas magic make it last a lifetime?
A Magical Chanukah in New York
Lisa Sassoon has shunned the scandal of her loser-ex cheating on her by escaping to New York. Instead of sightseeing, she’s become a recluse focusing on helping the less fortunate at a homeless shelter.
Gabe Olivari, entrepreneur and savvy business New Yorker, can’t let go of the pain of losing his best friend. So caught up in his own grief and believing he doesn’t deserve to be happy, he compensates by pushing everyone close to him away.
But when Lisa and Gabe meet, there is an instant connection that forces them to question not only their behaviours but their aspirations.
Can a dash of Chanukah magic help Lisa and Gabe realise that sparkling dates and dreamy kisses can lead to more? Perhaps even a lifetime of happiness?
Joanne Dannon has been living in the world of romance for as long as she can remember. From doodling love hearts on her school notebooks to regularly reading romances, Joanne’s world has always been filled with the excitement of love stories. So it was just a natural for Joanne to begin writing the genre she’s always loved.
Formerly a policy writer by day and romance writer by night, Joanne now spends full time writing the books she adores. Creating heroes for readers to fall in love with and heroines to cheer on, her characters are people readers can identify with.
Joanne writes to give her readers the experience she still loves to savor—indulging in a sigh-worthy-happily-ever- after, being swept away from the everyday by diving into a delicious romance novel.
Joanne is a happily married mother of two heroes-in-training who loves spending time with friends and family. She can be found on Facebook and her website www.joannedannon.com, chatting about reading, writing, cooking, vintage-inspired dresses and all things romantic. She loves to hear from readers.
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