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Just Launched: The Inner Lands

Like many authors, A. J. Justin had been working on his story in one way or another for a very long time. In fact, it began life over ten years before, as part of a creative writing project that became part of his final piece at university. The initial concept was simply about a young girl walking through a forest, who stumbles upon a clearing. In the clearing, a warrior kneels, crying. The reader doesn’t know who the girl is or what she’s doing; who the warrior is or why he’s crying – and neither did the author at that point.

Having developed the characters, themes, and his writing style for many years throughout the story-telling process, A. J. Justin was finally ready to self-publish. But having spent so long getting the story absolutely perfect, he wanted to make sure the publication of his book would be would be perfect too. He needed to feel that his “baby” was in professional hands.

“The self-publishing process is daunting. As authors, we’ve spent so long trying to perfect our work that the thought of then leaving the final stage in somebody else’s hands is utterly terrifying. I looked at about five other self publishing companies before I found I Am Self-Publishing. They were the only ones who seemed willing to tailor a package to my specific needs, which incidentally made for a much cheaper quote than I’d received from others.  I Am Self-Publishing walked me through every stage of the process, and when I was finally able to hold my book tightly and proudly in both hands, it made it all worthwhile. This was my first of three novels in a series and I look forward to working with I Am Self-Publishing again for the other two.” – A. J. Austin

 

About The Inner Lands: Something Stirs Volume 1

A. J. Justin

 

For centuries, the mountainous borders of the Inner Lands had kept the monstrous Grinth at bay, and people had finally found peace. But their complacency would be their undoing, for everything was about to change. As their world falls apart around them, an unlikely bond between a young girl, beaten by her father, and a conflicted warrior, haunted by his tragic past, could well seal the fate of all humanity.

As they fight for their survival, a final battle looms. But before they can stand a chance against the Grinth, they’ll first have to conquer their own pasts. Will friendship and strength prevail? Or will the cunning and cruelty of evil twist the world into turmoil? Nothing is certain in the Inner Lands.

When Fallor called a meeting for the entire Hillock village, little did Sill know that it was just the beginning in a series of events that would reshape everything she knew about their small world. The banishing of her abusive father frees her to embark on a journey of her own. One in which she encounters incredible natural wonders like the Moonmirror Peak, mysterious people like Draneth the shaman and his hawk, Tamarellin, strange men with stranger eyes; and the mighty Rydan Fort, built into the side of a mountain.

It could have been the adventure of her dreams, were it not for the monstrous creatures that pursue her all the way; bringing death, destruction and tragedy to everything and everyone she grows to cherish. The power she kept a secret for so long is too much for her young mind to handle but she’ll have to learn how to wield it, and quickly, if she’s to survive in this harsh new world.

See what all the reviewers are raving about. Get a free Kindle sample on Amazon here.

Keep in touch with the author on his social media: twitter.com/author_austin and www.facebook.com/a.j.austin.author.

Sisters Launch Debut Novels on Local Radio

Carmella and Alison McKenzie have just self-published their debut novels. They grew up in the sixties, where imagination was their iPad and the great outdoors was their television. Their creativity kept them entertained as they would make up games and recreate stories. Now they are both writing and self-publishing novels together. It started when Carmella was living in Cyprus for a short while and started to write. Alison became her editor and loved getting involved with the stories. It gave her the writing bug, and she decided to have a go herself. The two of them have found writing together great fun and enormously rewarding.

The sisters approached us earlier in the year with several novels and were brimming with ideas for future projects and series. We were very excited, and as a brother and sister team ourselves, it was great to work with another sibling double act. We wanted to create a brand style that would work for both sisters and their future works, as well as their first novels. Our designers went to the drawing boards and came up with a light, fresh style that reflects the commercial women’s market and the elements of the magical and unexplained that creep into these stories to add intrigue.

mckenzie sisters

This look we created for them has been carried across to their website – www.mckenziesisters.com – and social media profiles too. The sisters were delighted with the look of their books. Alison comments:

“I always knew our covers would have a different kind of picture on the front. I wanted to concentrate on the text with small images representing the story; the robin, clock and heart were part of my first drawing. Carmella wanted a slightly different look, a bigger picture, in keeping with the popular chick-lit style.

The designer was  able to keep both our ideas and yet bring the covers together with the same background colouring, and the fonts worked well. The fact that the author name font has continued onto the website helps promote the style that we are also using on our Facebook page, posters, adverts for Christmas fairs and other book promotions.”

Launching on Local Radio

local radio

The sisters were interviewed on the local station, BBC Radio Devon, last week. They discussed their books and what it’s like writing and working together. Carmella is no stranger to radio, having been on the air as a presenter for many years. She knows just how big an audience you can reach through local radio, so it was always going to be part of their marketing plan.

In these digital days, some authors can overlook more traditional avenues to promote their books, but local radio can really boost your profile and also publicise local events. For example, not only are the sisters having a big launch party in their local Waterstones, they are also doing numerous signings and charity events throughout the local area, which they wanted to invite listeners along to.

Catch up on the full interview on BBC iPlayer here – they come in around 1hr 20mins into the show: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p05drp2c#play.

Carmella’s Top 5 Local Radio Tips for Indie Authors

  1. Do your homework. Get listening to work out which specific show you and your book would be the best fit for. Then you need to approach the station manager, or in the case of the BBC, the producer of the specific show you would like to be on.
  2. Prepare your answers. You don’t want it to sound rehearsed but you need to expect certain questions and have answers up your sleeve. You should be able to tell the interviewer what your book is about in a really concise, punchy way.
  3. Lighten up. It’s a good idea to have a lighter anecdote or something amusing about your book or your writing process so that if you feel the dialogue getting a bit too heavy or stilted, you can break that down with a chirpy story.
  4. Have a call to action. Know what you want listeners to do – do you want them to come to a launch event? Do you want them to visit your website? Make sure the interviewer has all these details in advance.
  5. Relax and enjoy it. It can seem intimidating but the interviewer is unlikely to take you off topic onto something you are uncomfortable speaking about. Just imagine it’s a friendly chat between the two of you!

About Haberdashery by Carmella McKenzie

Hannah has always been a bit of a dreamer. She loves nothing more than escaping into the pages of a bodice ripper, where the men are a darn sight more impressive than her husband, Michael. It would be fair to say her 5-year marriage was not living up to her romantic expectations. She channels her frustrations and creativity into her sewing and crafts some beautiful pieces. It started with her own wedding dress, which had a strangely magical look after she discovered a mysterious haberdashery shop and its even more mysterious owner, the quirky Fae Dorothy Grim.

A chance encounter with a tall, dark stranger sets a chain of events in motion, which turn her life around. Still spinning, she hurtles from one big life change to another. Can Hannah make, cut, sew and put a special finish on her own life?

This heart-warming tale will have you rooting for Hannah as she stitches together her new life.

About From The Future With Love by Alison McKenzie

An invite from her best friend to spend the summer in Scotland, and celebrate her twentieth birthday, is just the thing Robyn needs to put some positivity back in her life. On the long drive from Devon, she is strangely drawn to a man she finds collapsed and bleeding in the middle of a wheat field. There is something about this dark-haired, dark-eyed stranger that’s more than mysterious.

The last thing Robyn expects is to become entangled in a romance before even crossing the border, but she feels an inexplicable connection, and perhaps Shay, feeling it too, or due to his bang on the head, starts dropping hints about life in another time. From the Future, With Love is a love story with a time-travelling twist, and a reminder that today’s actions have future consequences.

For a free chapter of each book, head over to their website: www.mckenziesisters.com

Just Launched: Elvis in London

 

Alice Beneyto has been a life-long music fan, and listened to the radio constantly with her brother when growing up. Her early (and diverse) record collection included the likes of Bob Marley, Bob Dylan and Velvet Underground. Recently, she became interested in and perplexed by the modern obsession with fame and celebrity, and it is that that inspired her debut novel: Elvis in London.

Alice came to us with a finished manuscript, but needed help with the cover design, as well as producing an eBook and paperback. Our designers got to work straight away, to create something iconic and bold that would instantly be recognisable as Elvis. Then we typeset the text, using the same fun font on the cover for the chapter headings, before creating the paperback and eBook editions for her.

To have all I Am Self-Publishing’s know-how under one virtual roof was reassuring and essential for me as a debut author. There are so many things to take into consideration for what the book actually looks like, from the cover illustration to the typeface and paper quality, and I Am Self-Publishing guided me through the choices. It is worth investing in their expert support. You’ve put all that effort into writing a book, you want it to look first-class once it’s published.” – Alice Beneyto

About Elvis in London

Elvis In London

In many ways, Eddie is an average working class Londoner. He’s into music, partying, and his motorbike. He is laid-back, charming and knows the streets of Soho inside out. And he has a sensational secret. Winning an impersonation competition as Elvis Presley changes Eddie’s life. He is fast-tracked to fame. The media can’t get enough of him and neither can his fans. His electrifying gigs become the hottest tickets in town, and he gets hooked on the power he commands over an audience.

Eddie is torn. The bigger his fame and ego grow, the harder it is to keep his secret. But if he tells the truth, will anyone believe him? Will the media and his fans still adore him? For Eddie is the reincarnation of Elvis Presley.

One bad decision and he could lose everything and everyone he loves. This fast-paced novel will make you laugh, sing and question the cult of celebrity worship.

Buy it now on Amazon

Find out more about Alice Beneyto on her website: http://alicebeneyto.com/ or check her out on twitter @alicebeneyto