Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Angie Fox on Taking Charge of Your Career

Angie Fox
The Last of the Demon Slayers
Pub date: November 2010
Agent: Jessica Faust



(Click to Buy)


Jessica talks a lot on this blog about taking charge of your publishing career. I used to think that it meant learning all you can about the business so that you can make an educated decision about agents, publishers, and how to make that first sale. And that is very important. But since I’ve been published, I’ve discovered that securing that initial book contract is only the beginning.

My first book came out in 2008 from Dorchester Publishing. The Accidental Demon Slayer went on to sell very well. In fact, it hit the New York Times bestseller list. The second and third books in the series followed. I worked hard at my craft, at telling the best stories I could, and I enjoyed the looks on some readers’ faces when I told them I write about a demon slayer who runs off with a gang of geriatric biker witches.

Then the biker witches hit a pothole. My publisher was having trouble distributing books and paying authors. Dorchester wasn’t meeting its contractual obligations regarding my books.

Jessica and I considered things carefully before we knew what we had to do. We contacted my publisher – the publisher I’d been so thrilled to sign with – and we took back the rights to my upcoming book. I would no longer publish my series with Dorchester.

Yes, it’s easy to say: Take control of your publishing career. But I’ll be the first to tell you – it’s daunting. It was the strangest feeling knowing that I alone was in charge of my next release. I mean, some days, I can barely find my car keys.

Now I had this great book on my hands – a book I’d worked so hard to write and that I was so proud of – and I had to decide what to do next. There was a demand. The Last of the Demon Slayers is a great stand-alone book. It takes the biker witches on this crazy cross-country ride. People have been asking about it, even when they haven’t read the first books. I was getting a lot of email from both new and established readers asking when they’d see the book. And after the issues with the publisher became public knowledge, many readers worried if they’d see the book.

So I took another plunge. With Jessica’s help, I’m releasing The Last of the Demon Slayers on Kindle today. But even if readers don’t have a Kindle, they can get Kindle for PC (that’s what I use) or Kindle for Mac, which are both easy ways to get the same book on your computer. We’re also hoping to follow up with a paperback version.

I owe it to my readers to give them the book that they’ve been hearing about for the past year. And I’ve come to realize I owe it to myself as a writer. I’m so stinking proud of this book and I need to get it out there, if only to stay sane and happy.


And I’ve learned an important lesson through all of this. Publishing is hard. Things don’t always turn out how we wish or how we’d planned. But the most important thing you can do is commit yourself to keep writing, and innovating, and growing.

In fact, I just signed a three-book contract with St. Martin’s Press. I’ll be writing a darkly humorous paranormal saga about an otherworldly M*A*S*H unit, called The Monster MASH. And I’m also writing two fun, quirky novellas for Kensington books. Both of those are due out next year. It just goes to show you that publishing can be rocky, but the ideas don’t stop.

Looking back, I don’t know why I thought things would always go smoothly after I sold that first book. Life just isn’t like that. We can’t always expect it to be safe or comfortable.

In fact, I’m as keyed up about today’s release as I would be if The Last of the Demon Slayers was sitting on a shelf at Walmart. This is an unknown, a whole new experience. But it was something I had to do. So I suppose today is the perfect day to take a bit of advice from the biker witches: Control what you can, let go of what you can’t, and enjoy the ride.

Would you like to learn more? Visit Angie at www.angiefox.com.

24 comments:

Sally MacKenzie said...

You go, girl! Fingers crossed this experiment is a HUGE success.

Anne Gallagher said...

Thanks for sharing the ups and downs Angie. That must have been a wild ride for you with Dorchester.

Congratulations on all your success, many more years to come.

kris said...

Bravo, Angie, for having the guts to take this huge step and then for being willing to share the tale with the rest of us. I'm hoping this pays off big time for you.

Anita said...

Wow, what a wild ride! You should be commended on staying in control of your career, even when the publishing world started to careen all around you.

Congrats on this next phase of your career, and I hope you become a Kindle best seller ... I have a feeling you will.

Good luck Angie!

Angie Fox said...

Thanks! That's the fantastic thing about this new era of publishing. Authors have choices. We have freedom to get out books to our readers in the format works best. I'm really excited about it.

Paige Shelton said...

Thanks for sharing, Angie, and Happy Release Day! I have a Droid phone that has a Kindle app. I'll be getting my copy right after I finish this comment.

Best of luck!

Paige

Farrah Rochon said...

Good for you, Angie! Best of luck with this experiment, and with your new start at St. Martins!

Kate Douglas said...

Angie, as you know, I'm following this saga with great interest, not only because we share an agent, but because I absolutely LOVE this series and was hoping you'd be able to release this story somewhere!

Best of luck to you. I'm really sorry about what's happened with Dorchester--they were such a great publisher for those quirky stories that might not have found a home elsewhere, and that alone is a huge loss, but I'm also sorry for what's happened to the authors who signed with them and the wonderful people who USED to work for them. Really a shame the way it's all played out.

Best of luck to you! It really is a brave new world of publishing.

AJ said...

You're a brave lady, Angie! And kudos to you for forging forward and not giving up. You're a great inspiration to those of us looking to publish one day.

Jeanie said...

I am so excited for you, Angie. May you have continued success in all your writing ventures!

Lexi George

Laurel said...

Good for you! This series sounds right up my genre alley and I'm not sure how it slipped under my radar thus far.

I just went to Amazon to buy this for Kindle and it's coming up with a message that says "Sign up to be notified when this item becomes available." Also, I'd like to read the series in order but I don't want to buy the earlier versions if you aren't going to get paid. Any thoughts? Library, maybe?

Happy release day. Not the sort of press you hope for to boost your sales, but I hope it works out that way and you end up with a great success story on this title!

Laurel said...

Update: When I click through the buy link here it goes right through. When I type the title into the Amazon search function I get the message about the title not being available.

rita said...

Happy Release Day and good for you. Stepping into the new and unknown world of today's publishing is a big step for sure. It will be a success. take notes to share with those of us who will follow.

Jess Granger said...

For the record to clear up some confusion. The Amazon store still has the old Dorchester version available for sale.

If you are looking for Angie's new book, look for the word "The" in the title. It's "The Last of the Demon Slayers." NOT "Last of the Demon Slayers."

No "the" not the right book.

If that doesn't work, on the cover of the correct version, Pirate is wearing a red bandanna, and the sword is straight up and down.

I hope everyone enjoys the book. I got to read it early and it's awesome!

http://www.makealivingwritingromance.com said...

Thank you for sharing your experiences! Every author's journey is different and it really helps when we can learn from each other.

Alli Sinclair said...

Angie, well done to you and Jessica for taking this plunge. I am sure it will work out brilliantly as I am sure you have a legion of fans of your work (me included).

Congrats on the new deals and I love that you are able to release this new book as PC compatible (I've yet to go down the ebooks route).

Yay for you and I wish you all the success in the world.

Vicki said...

I'm thrilled to know the last book in the series is out and so excited to know about your new contract!

Cindy Procter-King said...

Way to go, Angie. I'm getting a Kindle in January and can't wait. I know from my experience buying multiple ebooks that I won't read them on my computer. Not even on my netbook. This comes from my need to read lying down. I can do that with a Kindle. If I'm sitting up, I feel like I'm reading a textbook. I just don't like to read sitting up!

Helena said...

I hope your sales go through the roof! As a once-published (Bantam) author who's about to embark on her first self-publishing venture, I feel inspired by your resourceful determination to take your success into your own hands.

Douglas L. Perry said...

You can also get the Kindle app on your iPad. I have it on mine and it works well. So there's a few more million potential customers.

Layla Fiske said...

Thank you so much for sharing your story! It's fascinating to hear first hand from published authors. I wish you the best of luck...keep us posted on your progress.

p.s. I'll buy one!! Always glad to support a fellow writer.

Debra Lee said...

Bravo, Angie! I think you are going to be extremely happy with your kindle sales.

Debra

L.C. Gant said...

Wow. Thanks for such an informative post. I have to admit I didn't realize stories like yours existed. I guess I always assumed getting published was the hardest part of the process.

Anyway, best of luck with the new book, Angie! We're all rooting for you!

Faye Hughes said...

Just downloaded my copy, Angie! Best of luck!!

Faye