The Girls Outside series. Gifted. Weird. Wise.
|Image found here|
A special thanks goes out to Madeline, Jen, and Nancy whose ideas inspired me this direction. Madeline gets credit for thinking up "Girls Outside" and Jen and Nancy encouraged me to think about keeping individual titles for each book, and to perhaps have the titles themselves follow a pattern. Nancy challenged me to think about why I need a brand at all, and that thought helps me to keep everything in perspective. The brand is not all. The work is.
And we discussed that while that is true, this age requires artists to market their works themselves, no matter whether traditional or self-publishing is the mode of release. Understanding your target audience and who will be most drawn to your book is the first order of business for a writer who wishes to tell the world, "Hey, my baby's here!" You want what's called "word-of-mouth on steroids." The UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School shares an interesting post on the fast pace of today's marketing and how branding evolves from audience. One of the subheadings, "Learning to Listen," is exactly what happened here--I asked The People Who Might Like My Book what they thought of my ways to describe my characters. I'm not just invoking cliche when I say I couldn't have come up with a name without you, Dear Readers!
I also appreciated the meditative posts and comments from Maureen that explored connotations of all the words on the table (nerd, geek, etc.). It's just that kind of analytical thinking that helps me weigh the resonance of terms and what will last with certain groups. I should do that with every word of every story I publish. When I draft well and meticulously, that's actually the writing process I can follow.
There are too many others to thank, so instead of listing all your names here, please know I am grateful for the time you took to think on behalf of my creative work and help me with your opinions.
When I publish HOW WENDY REDBIRD DANCING SURVIVED THE DARK AGES OF NOUGHT this spring, Wendy's story will be the first of three books where teen protagonists overcome strange, crazy, and sometimes traumatic situations. They're survivors, all of them, so the next book could likely have "SURVIVED" in its title, as would the next. Or not. What's important here is that Wendy, Minerva, and Alastrine are all girls on the fringe, trying to find their voices, and they are definitely gifted, weird, and wise.
So what's on deck now? Wendy's story is in final developmental edits, and my first publication, a short-story collection, will release very soon. THE FLAT AND WEIGHTLESS TANG-FILLED FUTURE is uploading to Kindle in a matter of days. The product of eight years of toil, and happy toil, for sure, will be hitting the electronic shelves, and I couldn't be more pleased. Stay tuned!