Christian A. Brown is the best-selling author of the critically acclaimed Feast of Fates (the first book in the genre bending Four Feasts until Darkness series.) It received a Kirkus Star Review in 2014. He’s appeared on AM 640, Daytime Rogers, and Get Bold Today with LeGrande Green. He actively writes a blog about his mother’s journey with cancer and gender issues in the media.
Originally, Christian was a personal trainer. When his mother was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma in 2010 he became her primary caregiver. Being a long-term caregiver gave Christian an abundance of free time and nothing to do with it. So he dug out the manuscript that he’d been working on for about a decade and decided to actually finish the thing. That manuscript eventually became Feast of Fates.
Christian’s self-publishing journey is fascinating. In this podcast we talk about working with an editor, getting a publicist, and some of the mistakes he has made on his journey.
Here are some of the takeaways:
- Create a schedule for writing and do it every day.
- Even if you only have a little bit of time be consistent and committed to your writing.
- When in doubt just sit down and do the work.
- Writing isn’t always creative and inspired. Sometimes you just have to force the prose out.
- The importance of finding an editor.
- As a professional writer, you need to get over your sensitivity to criticism.
- You only have one chance to make a good first impression.
- You have to believe in yourself.
- When you self publish you have control over every aspect of your product.
- It’s important to think of your novel as a product because that’s what it is.
- Don’t run an advertising campaign unless you have more than one book, or you have money to burn. Advertising campaigns can get expensive really fast.
- Build your platform. Have an email list. Choose your social media channels and attack them.
- Every author should have a primary editor.
- Another place to spend some money is to hire a visual artist.
- If you’re not a web designer you should hire one to build your website.
- It’s best to run an ad campaign when you’re book is selling well. Then your advertising will magnify its success.
- The Kirkus review was a wise investment.
- When you write a good book you’re going to get some bad reviews.
- When you blog aim for consistency. You never know when people discover you. Over time your blog readership will increase.
- Encourage other artists.
- Every author is fighting for visibility. Try different things and see what works.
- Try engaging on Facebook with images rather than just plain text.
- Bookbub will probably reject you at least once before you get accepted. Keep trying. They are an extremely valuable resource to expand your audience.
- Once you develop your brand a publicist can be valuable for getting you into media that you wouldn’t be able to get into yourself.
- BookBub can help you outsell massively popular traditionally published authors.
- Believe in yourself.
- There’s enough success in the world for everyone.
Links and Resources Mentioned in the Interview
Get Bold Today — a wellness podcast with LeGrande Green.
Stephen King’s On Writing — a memoir with some important nuggets of writing advice from one of the most successful authors of all time.
Christian’s website — you can find the latest news on Christian, as well as his blog that’s updated every Sunday.
Feast of Fates — Christian’s first book
Feast of Dreams — the sequel to Feasts of Fate
Mary Sue — the premier destination for entertainment geeks, female or otherwise. Coverage includes movies, comics, TV/movie fandom, and other cool stuff.
Kirkus Reviews — this company has been reviewing books since 1933. It is a leading voice in the world of book discovery. They are a well-respected company that guarantees impartial reviews.
BookBub — the world’s biggest ebook promotion website with a mailing list of more than 5 million readers.
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Tom Corson-Knowles is the founder of TCK Publishing, and the bestselling author of 27 books including Secrets of the Six-Figure author. He is also the host of the Publishing Profits Podcast show where we interview successful authors and publishing industry experts to share their tips for creating a successful writing career.