Well, we made it happen- the hardcover is going to take a bit but you can now order King Rat by clicking the link below to re-route to Amazon:
I’m pretty excited. My mom wants me to immediately have a signing at their volunteer library (in a town of 500) and I laughed a bit, then realized I better do it! Now I have to hustle, hustle, hustle to make it work and make it a source of some income. I have quite a bit of marketing and ad experience now, but always for other people. When it’s for yourself it’s much more interesting.
It’s funny, I never considered self-publishing before, but from what everyone else is doing, it’s really the wave of the future. The whole industry has changed so much, with big companies less willing to put any money toward marketing and leaving it up to authors even WHEN they have a book deal. Because it’s expensive, and time-consuming, and they’re all about volume, just like Hollywood. It’s why, of course, all we have are re-runs. I want to do “Roads” the traditional way, if I can, but I imagine I’ll still need to do publicity myself. If it gets that far- which I plan on it doing. Again, a lot of work.
I’ve had some great inspiration from two of my family members who are self-published, successful authors- so thank you Sara C. Roethle and Susan Kalior. You’ve known how to make this work for a long time. Check out Sara’s site for fun YA fantasy and sci-fi, and Susan has some great self-help books.
King Rat will be a participant at the Spring 2017 Festival of Books on March 12! I’ll be in the Author’s Pavilion signing and selling copies from 12:15 to 2:15. I’ll add a post here as soon as Amazon has the paperback copies for sale. Working on the hardcover next – and a couple more merch ideas 😉
This has been in the works for a while- like, 27 years or so? I wrote a little story when we were living out in the desert outside of Bouse, Arizona. Jim’s Place, if you’ve ever read that story. It’s one of the earlier ones on this blog, though I have many stories about the place and the people we met: Roads on her Face #6: Jim’s Place.
My dad loved the fact that I’d written it, because I think he was most taken with the name. “The Rat Who Didn’t Know He Was King.” It was far from the first thing I’d written- I’d started writing as soon as I knew the alphabet. I made magazines, books that I bound myself with a stapler or that I sewed together with scraps of fabric and cardboard. This time, he decided he was going to illustrate it – as he was a great unrealized artist, he believed. He definitely had some talent, but it had never been honed. Raw talent, without the skills. He sketched a couple of illustrations and then gave up. I think he realized it was beyond him, but he just acted like it was stupid and like he’d never wanted to do it in the first place.
We got a magazine that was aimed at preppers or off-the-grid types, I forget what it was. We were the target market.
In the back I’d found a small black and white ad that offered to “Publish your book! Work with the pros!” My little 8-year old self was excited and full of hope. Mom had picked up a typewriter at a yardsale and I painstakingly typed it out, with lots of cross-outs and whiteout and a crappy old ink ribbon that had come with the machine. I dropped it in the mail and waited impatiently, KNOWING that I was going to be selected, going to be famous, going to be a WRITER. In about a week, I got a big fat package in the mail from Dorrance Publishing. It contained my offer- that they were willing to to publish my book! They planned 8 line drawings, black and white, and there were the specs and my name in print. For $4,000 dollars. Welcome to the real world, little girl. Ain’t nothing in this life for free….
Anyway- please like my Facebook page for updates about the book! I plan to have it ready for sales shortly on Amazon- I’m just debating now about hardcover or paperback. I have a wonderful tattoo artist here in Tucson – Ed Slocum – who agreed to come on board as the illustrator, and I just can’t thank him enough- visit his shop on Facebook and tell him he’s awesome. He’s also on Tumblr, and that’s updated more often.
Click here http://www.facebook.com/theratwhodidntknow
“Nobody tells this to people who are beginners, I wish someone told me. All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you. A lot of people never get past this phase, they quit. Most people I know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. We know our work doesn’t have this special thing that we want it to have. We all go through this. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know its normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work. Put yourself on a deadline so that every week you will finish one story. It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions. And I took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone I’ve ever met. It’s gonna take awhile. It’s normal to take awhile. You’ve just gotta fight your way through.”
Bisbee has become quite a little art town, with its beautiful homes, winding streets, and thousand staircases. It’s always cooler than the lower desert, and has some great restaurants and a brewery.
The light here was just right- the range of colors, the pinks, the ripples in the sand. It’s such a beautiful place to shoot. I should have used a lower ISO though, it got a bit grainy.
The light was beautiful…the exposure was not quite right but the next one I’m posting was perfect. I still liked the footprints here and the blues of the sand.