Welcome back to Author’s Corner!
Today I have the pleasure of interviewing GK DeRosa who is the Author of Wilder The Guardian Series
Thank You Gk DeRosa for agreeing to be a part of this!
1st Question why do you write?
Because I love it! I had always loved reading as a child/teenager but somehow I never had the time anymore as an adult. I had forgotten my passion for it. After moving to NYC four years ago and suddenly having plenty of time to read while commuting, I rekindled my love of reading, which brought about the idea to start writing.
When was the moment decided to become a writer?
It came to me out of the blue really. I had left NYC and moved back to Florida where I grew up. I was looking at my kindle one day, and noticed how many books I had read in the past year, and I thought instead of spending so much time reading perhaps I could write myself. And that was it… I just sat down with my laptop and starting writing one day.
What genre are your books?
I just started a Young Adult supernatural series. I love young adult books, I always have - even though I’m a little past the target age range. J And fantasy/romance seemed like a fun idea since I am an eternal romantic at heart.
What draws you to this genre?
I am very young at heart. My husband always teases me that I’m a fifteen year old on the inside. I love fantasy, romance and the supernatural; I think it allows for great creativity because you can literally do anything with it. You are not bound by strict conventions when you write fantasy and you can go as far as your imagination will take you.
Do you write full-time or part-time?
I started out writing part-time in Florida last year, but I’ve recently moved to Poland temporarily and am not working. This allows me to write full-time now. It is the best thing in the world!
Do you have a special time to write or how is your day structured?
Ah yes… I strive for structure but somehow I don’t often achieve it! L You would think that being a full time writer would give me tons of time to work, but yet somehow the days always fly by. I try to write in the morning, but somehow I mostly end up writing in the late afternoon. I set a goal for myself of a minimum number of pages a day and that’s how I stay motivated.
Where do your ideas come from?
My very active imagination J. I have read a ton of young adult supernatural books and have many favorite TV shows. I’d be lying if I said that they didn’t inspire my books.
How do you think you’ve evolved creatively?
I’ve only just started writing really. I have one book published and I’m currently working on the next in the series. But I think I’m constantly learning and trying to be a better writer. I read a lot and try to figure out what works for other writers and what I like or what I don’t like as a reader.
How are you publishing this book and why?
I’m currently self-publishing. It was a natural choice for me as my husband is an Amazon expert, and he convinced me I could do this myself. It has been scary at times, but I’ve learned a lot in less than a year since I started.
What would you say are the main advantages and disadvantages of self-publishing against being published or the other way around?
I don’t know much about being a traditionally published author, but from what I hear, you lose a lot of control over your book. I like that as an indie author I control everything, but that is also rather daunting. As a business major, I had certainly studied marketing and advertising, but studying it and actually putting it into practice are entirely different. I love the writing but I don’t love the sales and marketing part. I wish I had someone that would do that for me, but at least I’m learning some valuable information.
Why did you choose this route?
Mostly because my husband convinced me ;)
How successful has your quest for reviews been so far?
I was lucky that I had my husband to guide me through selling on Amazon and he told me from the beginning how important it was to get reviews. So I had a few people review the book before it even published so that I could start off on the right foot. But it is definitely difficult. Swapping reviews with other authors on Goodreads has been the best source for me so far. I also have been lucky enough to get some reviews from people that read Wilder and really loved it.
What are your views on social media for marketing?
Social media is a specialty of it’s own and you can spend hours navigating through it. I have a Facebook page and a Twitter account and I try to be fairly active. It’s hard to say though what the return is, and that’s what’s difficult about it. I recently created a second Twitter account for my main character, Celeste Wilder. I thought that would be a fun way for readers to interact with her. I’m still working on my following!
Did you do a press release, Goodreads book launch or anything else to promote your work and did it work?
Yes I did do a press release, which I sent through to Fiverr and had them distribute it. I was extremely fortunate to have met Ian Somerhalder at The Vampire Diaries convention in Barcelona. The Vampire Diaries and his character Damon were the inspiration to my novel so I wanted him to have a copy of my book. When I gave it to him, he was truly touched and asked me to sign it for him. My very first author autograph was to Ian Somerhalder, I was shaking to say the least! I got a picture with him and I used that story along with the photo for my press release. I think having a celebrity story got a lot of attention for my book and kicked up the initial buzz. I did also do a pre-launch giveaway with a blogger and a Goodreads giveaway. I also did a Facebook ad campaign featuring my pictures with Ian Somerhalder and did a giveaway with a signed picture from him.
Did you make any marketing mistakes or is there anything you would avoid in future?
I spent a good bit of money on Facebook ads without really knowing the return as you cannot track where your sales are coming from with Amazon. I would probably not spend as much the second time around. The same is true with the Amazon pay per click, which I think I also spent too much on.
Do you think that giving books away free works and why?
Yes I do believe it does, within reason of course. I think the giveaways, especially on Goodreads are a good way to attract attention to a new book. I had about 1500 people request the book and got about 800 people mark my book as “to read” and that happened because of the giveaway. I also did a free day on Amazon and gave away over 400 ebooks in one day, and I think I got a good amount of reviews from that.
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Never quit! No matter what people say or how disappointed you get, just keep writing. Once I wrote my first book, I had so many people say to me “Oh I’ve always wanted to write” or “I started writing, but never finished it”. I think a lot of people get discouraged, and don’t follow through.
Where do you see publishing going in the future?
That is a good question! I think self-publishing will continue to get bigger as more and more resources become available to indie writers. I’m glad I chose this path and will continue in it. I’ve never even sent my manuscript to a traditional publishing house and I don’t think that I will. Indie publishing is the way of the future.
Is there anything else you would like to add that I haven’t included?
Wilder: The Guardian Series is the first book in the series and available on Amazon now for purchase for only $2.99. I am currently writing the second book and it should be available some time in the fall of 2015. Keep an eye out for it!
Last question how can my readers discover more about you and you work?
Twitter: Vampgirl923 and CelesteWilder18
Amazon Author Page: www.amazon.com/G.K.-DeRosa/e/B00ZLVFAUI/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1438691311&sr=1-2-ent