Indie Author Caroline Peckham is releasing her debut novel “Creeping Shadow”, the first in her series “The Rise of Isaac” on kindle, December 10th this year. I was lucky enough to get an advanced copy of this imaginative and entertaining YA fantasy. Caroline was kind enough to answer some of my questions about indie publishing and what her path down that avenue was like.
What led you to indie publishing?
I decided to publish independently after submitting my first book to literary agents and subsequently not receiving representation. I knew I was going to write this series no matter what so decided to go down the route of self-publishing. Amazon Kindle was a no-brainer for me as I myself buy all my ebooks through them. When I looked into their unlimited scheme I knew it was for me.
How many books have you published? Through what venues?
My first book, Creeping Shadow, is due to be published on December 10th 2015. I’ll be publishing through Amazon KDP and plan to have the second book in the series, Bleeding Snow, published in January or February 2016. The series will be five books in total and, depending on my experience with KDP, I currently plan to publish them all in this fashion. I’ll also be releasing a print version of the books through create space and can’t wait to have a solid copy of Creeping Shadow in my hands!
What are some tips you have for other writers?
I think the best thing I’ve learned is to write a first draft without stopping to look back over what you’ve already written. If I try to edit as I go then it slows down the process of getting the entire story down and I think it’s best to get that first draft done as quickly as possible then deal with the mistakes later. It’s also a good idea to not ask for feedback in these early stages or else their influence may change where you originally wanted the story to go.
What resources have helped you?
I’ve found WordPress and Goodreads the best resources as a writer. Blogging on WordPress has connected me with so many people that are as passionate about writing and reading as I am. Goodreads is brilliant for connecting with a community of readers that love reviewing and recommending books. It’s enabled me to have honest reviews on Creeping Shadow before its release date from those who have read ARCs. This will give it a platform to build on when it’s published which is invaluable as an indie author.
Tell me about your latest project:
I’m in the process of writing the following books to Creeping Shadow which is the first in The Rise of Isaac series. I’ve written book two and three which are currently in the editing stage and I’m focusing on this before writing book four. The series is a YA fantasy that follows the story of Oliver Knight as he sets out on a journey across seven worlds to save his sister from a lethal curse.
How has your work developed since you started?
When I first began writing I really had no idea about formatting, editing, blogging or even publishing. I was a complete newbie to all the processes! I have learned so much by taking each stage as it comes and spending the time to get feedback and advice from a range of people. It’s been a long road to get where I am today but I’ve enjoyed every minute of it. I can now write a draft of a book without making the millions of basic mistakes I used to and although my work always needs a lot of editing I have a stronger piece of work to start with which is due entirely to practice, learning and taking advice from the right people.
What does your editing process look like?
I start with a first draft of my book which has a beginning, middle and end but often has many gaps or holes in the story. I then go through it and fill in those gaps so a 70 or 80 thousand word first draft will usually end up around the 90 or 100 thousand word mark. Then the real editing begins! I’ll work over the second draft several times to fix any grammar and spelling then, when I’m generally happy with the quality of the writing, I’ll have it proofread by my sister (who also writes) and friends then ask for opinions on plot line and characters to get an idea of if the story flowed well and if there were things that didn’t make sense etc. After fixing these things I then get more feedback until I’m happy with the manuscript. At this stage, once I’ve read through it and not changed anything, I know it’s ready for review! It sounds simple but it can be a long process reading and rereading it over and over until it’s complete.
Tell us about your books for sale, include links please!
Book one of The Rise of Isaac series, Creeping Shadow, will be available to buy on Amazon from December 10th 2015. Here’s the blurb:
A man waits in Vale, a world void of humanity.
A mother vanishes, her disappearance concealed by the police.
A girl collapses, black magic invading her blood.
And a boy linked to them all must fight to save his family.
Earth is just one of seven worlds. Gateways divide the realms and those who pass through must earn keys, participating in challenges that will separate the fearful from the brave, the weak from the strong, and the witless from the cunning.
Sixteen year old Oliver Knight knows nothing of the other worlds or his family’s dark past. But when his adopted sister succumbs to a deadly curse the truth is revealed and he is plunged into an unknown land in a desperate bid to save her. However, a sinister enemy is on the rise and the danger they face at every turn throws those around them under suspicion. In order to survive, Oliver must figure out who to trust, who to believe and, ultimately, who to fear…
It is currently receiving honest reviews on Goodreads from people who have been given advanced reader copies. It has an average 4.5 stars and you can check out all the reviews on Creeping Shadow’s Goodreads page here: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/26526373-creeping-shadow
If you’re interested in finding out about me and my writing you can check out my website at: http://www.carolinepeckham.com
I’d like to say a big thank you to Lindsey for the interview and wish her well on her fantastic blog!