Thursday, December 1, 2016

How Julie Archer was inspired to be a rock star writer

Today, Julie Archer is here to talk about her road to publishing her debut novel, Cocktails, Rock Tales, & Betrayals.

Julie Archer grew up in Hampshire and lived in Reading before moving to the beautiful riverside town of Dartmouth in Devon. She still feels like she’s on holiday.

Julie trained as a journalist, then went into teaching (kept meeting the sixth form students in the pub, awkward!). After that she ‘fell’ into recruitment, spending more years there than she cares to mention, where the most creative thing she did was to create a sexy top line for job adverts! Since moving to Devon, she set up her own business offering virtual administration and recruitment services, worked for an accommodation company and is currently moonlighting in the local bookshop…

Also, COYS, Cats, Metal. Underneath this preppy exterior beats the heart of a rock chick. Visit Julie at her website, Facebook, and Twitter.


A bar, a band and a Thorne between two roses…

Caro and Nate are perfect for each other. Trouble is, Nate is really Alik Thorne lead singer of the Next Big Thing in rock music and his girlfriend, Edie, isn’t really prepared to share him…

Caro Flynn leaves behind the sultry nights of Mallorca to open her own bar back home. Romance wasn’t high on her list of priorities, but a last minute fling makes her think again…

Edie Spencer-Newman always gets what she wants. But when she sets her sights on something a little too close to home, she’s about to stir up a whole heap of trouble…

When the consequences of a tragic accident cause relationships to crumble, will anyone find a happy ending?

My Writing Journey

It was just over two years ago (ironically on the day I published the eBook of Cocktails, Rock Tales & Betrayals) that I received an email from Urban Writers’ Retreat to say that I had been accepted on the Six Month Novel Programme. I remember doing a happy dance around my kitchen as I realised that someone thought I had a good story to tell.

The Six Month Novel Programme is something to help writers get to the end of that first draft, with the support of fellow writers. There is structure, accountability and cheerleading. And a place for you to vent about how things are going – good and bad. The Writer’s Playground was a massively important part of my writing journey and without it, I don’t think I would ever have finished Cocktails, Rock Tales & Betrayals. I have made some fantastic virtual and real friends here, all of whom have helped me along the way.

I wrote “The End” on the first draft in early March 2015. Then life got in the way. And I half-heartedly edited the manuscript a few times, shoved it in a cupboard, forgot about it, dusted it off, got a few people to beta read it, sent off a few agent submissions and generally didn’t love it.
Then I went to a World Book Night Event in Stoke Fleming, near Dartmouth where I live, in April this year.

The guest speaker was Lesley Pearce, who regaled us with tales of her writing journey – and penchant for Sean Bean. Other speakers included Jenny Kane, Tony Porter, Jane Gill, Mel Menzies and Steve Stevenson-Olds.

Hearing these authors talk about how they had got their works published, either traditionally or through the self-publishing route, really made me think. And it made me want to be standing up on that side of the table at World Book Night 2017 telling my own story!

Having already submitted to a few agents and received stock replies of ‘thanks, but no thanks’ and ‘keep writing’, I considered the self-publishing route. Not knowing what this might entail, I explored the possibilities out there and looked at “assisted self-publishing” versus “pure self-publishing”.

I went to Tiverton Literary Festival in June and attended a self-publishing workshop by Marissa Farrar. Although I hadn’t come across her work before, she has self-published a huge number of novels in different genres. And made the process work!

I also met Carrie Elks at a Stickwick retreat. As another self-published author she was also able to give me more invaluable advice on how to do things properly, what to focus on and where to start with things like a marketing plan and social media.

After listening to both of these inspiring ladies (and taking copious notes!), I was more determined than ever to get the book out there myself. I was in a fortunate position of being able to have the time and funds available to dedicate to the editing, cover design and marketing processes.

So I did it! I wrestled with Createspace, Kindle Direct Publishing and Draft2Digital and won!

What’s next? Book 2 of course! And along with my fellow chums in the Writer’s Playground, we are publishing an anthology of stories called ‘Off Track’. It will be available in mid-November in both eBook and print formats. All proceeds are going to charity, so it would be great if you could pick up a copy.

Thanks to Julie for this lovely guest post and to HCL Author Services for coordinating Julie's visit. Visit all the stops on Julie's blog tour:

November 27th
Blog on the Run - Promo Post
My Comfy Reading Corner - Book Review
He Said Books or Me - Author Guest Post

November 28th

November 29th
Rachel Brimble Romance - Author Q&A
Living Life With Joy - Author Guest Post

November 30th
Book Lover in Florida - Book Excerpt 

December 2nd

December 3rd
Hello...Chick Lit - Book Excerpt 

December 4th
Novel Gossip - Book Promo/Excerpt 

December 5th
Rae Reads - Book Excerpt 

December 6th
Grass Monster - Amazon Book Review

1 comment:

Janine said...

This book sounds right up my alley. Also the author's name got my attention. Julie Archer was the name of one of my best friends years ago. :)