Author Interview: Melissa A. Smith

The perpetual IWU Blog Tour continues apace. This week, you can find a reciprocal interview with me by former guest-of-the-blog, Arshad Ahsanuddin, at his Pact Arcanum blog. Meanwhile, back at the ranch, help me give a warm welcome to this week’s guest, paranormal romance and YA fantasy author Melissa A. Smith:

JWG: Welcome, Melissa! To get started, why don’t you tell us a little about yourself?

Melissa: I live in the midwest with my husband and two teenaged sons. When I’m not writing I’m reading. During the day I work as a Preschool ParaEducator ie: sneeze catcher, substitute facial tissue, and play mate.

JWG: And what are you working on?

Melissa: I currently have two books out. The first is Cloud Nine of the Guardians of Man. And the other is of The Waiting Throne series, The Heir Apparent.

JWG: What first motivated you to become an indie author?

Melissa: I would have to say it was all the wonderful form rejection letters. After one of them I came across an article in Writers Beware talking about Self-Publishing and thought, what the hell? What have I got to lose? The answer was nothing, so I did it and I havent looked back since!

JWG: What has been the biggest challenge for you when it comes to self-publishing?

Melissa: Waiting on the editor. She has a life too and sometimes it interferes with her working with me (she does it out of the kindness of her heart so I hate to nag her with "are you done yet?")

JWG: Has any aspect turned out to be easier than you expected?

Melissa: Telling people about my book. I used to sell Mary Kay and was always terrified of handing out business cards or talking to them about it. With my book? I pass out bookmarks (my version of a business card) like they’re contagious! I hand them out to everyone! My boys think I’m nuts because I always have them on hand.

JWG: Do you take a strictly DIY approach, or do you hire help with things like editing, cover art, etc.

Melissa: The only thing I send out is the editing. I’m not completly computer illeterate so I do everything else. I’ve even helped out a couple of friends with cover art and formatting of their ebook files.

JWG: How has the decision to go indie turned out for you? Overall, are you happy with the choice?

Melissa: I love it! While I wish there were an easier way to market to a wider population, I’m very happy with my decision to ‘go indie’! 😀

JWG: Are there any stand-out lessons you’ve learned about self-publishing that you’d like to share with my readers?

Melissa: Join a support group like Indie Writers Unite! Such a great group of people there with so much helping up and none of the tearing down.

Thanks, Melissa!

You can find Melissa’s books on Amazon. You can also follow her on Twitter, and be sure to check out her blog!