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Friday, September 5, 2008

Author of the Week: Alyice Edrich

Hi Alyice! Welcome to Grit for the Oyster!

Can you give us a little bit of information about your publishing history?

I started writing professionally back in 1999. I started out writing for small print publications and a few online sources. One day, I thought I had a book in me and began researching the possibilities of getting it published. I opted to self-publish the book.

A year or so later, I was asked to take my grief journal and turn it into a book. I sought publishers, but was told that my particular idea for a grief journal—while intriguing—had too narrow a market. I eventually found a small publisher willing to publish the book, but just as the final edits were completed, the publisher went out of business. At that time, I opted to pull the book as too many grief journals were now making their way to Christian bookstores. Of course, it could have just been that my eyes were opened since researching the industry, but I felt it wasn’t a necessary book, so I pulled it. Now, I only hand it out to people I feel will be blessed by it and I do so, in e-book format.

Today, I’ve written ten e-books, two of which are distributed as free downloads and the rest I sell online.

I’ve also been included in a few print books, but never had one of my own, or even co-authored one.

What are the titles of your books?

Electronic Books: Author
Tid-Bits for New Signing Agents, e-book © 1999, 2003, 2005
Tid-Bits For Making Money With E-books, e-book © 2005
Tid-Bits for Marketing Your Business With Articles, e-book © 2004
Good Mourning Lord, e-book © 2004
Tid-Bits for New Daycare Providers, e-book © 2003
Mystery Shopping Earns You Perks!, e-book © 2002, 2003
Work-at-Home or Stay-at-Home? You can do both, e-book © 2002
Build Upon a Firm Foundation: Financial help with a biblical twist, e-book © 2002

Electronic Books: Compilation Editor & Contributor
Krack'd Pot Moms Anthology, e-book © 2005
TDM Speaks With Successful Authors, Vol. 1, e-book © 2005
Queries And Published Samples Anthology, e-book © 2005

Print Books: Contributing Writer
Fear of Writing, sequel to be published
Girlfriend's Guide To Grief, to be published
What Can I Do: Ideas To Help Those Who Have Experienced Loss ,
ISBN: 0-806-65327-2, published by Augsburg Books, 2007
From Entrepreneur to Infopreneur: Make Money Selling Information Products , pages 118-123
ISBN: 0-470-05086-1, published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2006
The Writersville Charity Cookbook, pages 96-97
ISBN 1-58961-108-X published by PageFree Publishing, 2003

eBooks: Contributing Writer
Daily Marketing Ace's Top 200 Tips (So Far), e-book © 2004
Copywriting-Success, e-book © 2003
I’ll Write when the Kids are Grown, e-book © 2001
Writers-Exchange 2000, e-book © 2000


What struggles have you had on the road to being published?

Since I am an author of electronically downloadable e-books, my biggest struggle is convincing potential buyers that my books are not “crap” and they offer real value.

What has been the best part about being published?

I can’t lie. It’s the residual income.

Second to that, it’s knowing that something I’ve written can help someone long after the research, the interviews, the writing, the editing, the tweaking, the promoting, the marketing, the interviewing is all done. It’s knowing that something I have written can possibly make a difference in the life of another human being.

Will you share with us how you come up with ideas for your books?

Currently, I write books based upon my personal experience. Once I feel that I’ve mastered a particular topic or skill, I set out to show others how to do it. Aside from that, I do like to see what’s currently available on the market and if the market is oversaturated for my idea, because if it is, I won’t be able to sell a thing. There is a drawback, however, I can sometimes pick a topic that has yet to be tapped into and within two years the market will be flooded with like-minded books.

Do you plan your books first with an outline or does it come to you as write it?

I plan a generalized outline on how I want the book to progress. I don’t go into huge detail, just enough to help me get from point A to point B.

Are you a morning writer or a night writer? Any tips or suggestions for writers?

I am a spur of the minute writer. I write when the mood strikes. That can be morning, noon, night, midnight. It all depends on when creativity hits because once I start writing I can’t stop. If, however, I force myself to write, it can take hours just to get started.

Do you have plans to write another book?

Yes, I have five outlines already written—four for e-books, and one for a print book. I’m currently slimming down my workload to make room for more writing time as writing a book takes more time and concentration than writing an article.

What is the most valuable piece of advice you have been given/learned in your life as a writer?

Never stop learning. It’s important to not allow pride to stand in the way of corrections or critiques. We must listen, take a step back, and see things with an open mind. Sometimes change can actually make the piece stronger. Other times, the change isn’t really necessary and you can leave it alone.

What do you wish you had known when you first started out as a writer for publication?

That it was a hard road, especially financially. You send in a query letter to request permission to write on a specific topic, then you must wait weeks—sometimes months—for an acceptance or a rejection. Once you get the acceptance and write the piece, you may not see publication or payment for another 6 months to 2 years.

Has it been a bumpy ride to becoming a published author or has it been pretty well smooth sailing?

When it came to self-publishing it was a fairly smooth ride. I did a lot of research, a lot of interviewing, a lot of learning before I ventured out onto my own. Then as I learned new things along the way I implemented them. It’s been a fairy tale ride—even if it can be difficult at times.

When it comes to print publications, definitely a bumpy ride. There’s lots of competition out there and sometimes it’s a matter of who you know or if you can beat the next guy to the punch. It’s unbelievably surreal how many of the same ideas are floating around out there.

How important do you think self-promotion is and in what ways have you been promoting your book offline and online?

It is VITALLY important to the success of any book—whether in print or download. It’s also vitally important to the success of a freelance writer who wants to write for magazines and/or small businesses.

Promotion comes in many forms: interviews, press releases, article marketing, blogs, social networking in person and online, workshops, conferences, newsletters, and definitely word of mouth.

Where can readers find a copy of your book?

The Dabbling Mum’s e-bookstore at http://thedabblingmumpress.com or http://thedabblingmum.com/ebookstore.

Is there anything else you would like to share with the readers here (advice, website, etc)? Do you have a website for readers to go to?

Don’t hesitate to stop by my magazine’s writing center where you will find a wealth of free information for aspiring and veteran writers: http://thedabblingmum.com/writing

And finally, don’t forget to invest in a website and/or blog. A lot of writers I know have gotten great paying writing gigs from their online presence.

Alyice, thank you very much for stopping by our blog. We wish you great success!

2 comments:

Patricia said...

Great story about Alyice. I've respected her work for quite a while.

I wanted to offer to conduct an interview with you about my work, as well. I've been writing for publication for 35 years, having found a way to support myself through my writing bout 25 year ago.

I am the author of 28 nonfiction books. I am the president of SPAWN (Small Publishers, Artists and Writers Network) www.spawn.org. I am also a teacher, workshop leader and editorial consultant. Check out my website and blog.

Patricia Fry
www.matilijapress.com
www.matilijapress.com/publishingblog
Contact me at PLFry620@yahoo.com

PAM KUMPE said...

I'm a writer on the Dabbling Mum. Love that Alyice!

She's dedicated, and committed to writing and helping others.

I have a new book coming out soon, would love to talk about it on your site. The book is "See You in the Funny Papers" - a bit of Good News. This book is a collection of fun-light, God-light stories from this Funny Newspaper Lady in East Texas. I'm your Pray & Play friend, and I've written this book to give "women" permission to have fun.