Monday, October 20, 2014

Twitter: DON'T READ THE COMMENTS

Lately, there have been a lot of people getting in a lot of trouble because of exposure through social media.

First, there was Gamer Gate. A feminist commentator does a YouTube video on how some video games use women "characters" in sexist and demeaning ways in order to further the storyline for the male protagonist, and suddenly treasure troves of gamers get so pissed off that she's publicly said this, she's now getting death threats.

Death threats, people…

Over her opinion about a few video games.

Then there was John Grisham.
Genius that he is, apparently he had one too many bourbons (or something) and tweeted how a buddy from law school was convicted and sent to prison for looking at kiddie porn, but it was completely overblown because he wasn't looking at videos of 10 year old boys, but of 16 year old girls, and that's not nearly as bad.

First, off, reporters and tweeters alike have already proven that his law school buddy WAS caught looking at videos, one of which included a 12 year old girl - so, Mr. Grisham's argument is already completely invalid.

But, the underlying problem is, of course, why is GIRL kiddie porn OK (in his mind) but boy kiddie porn not?

Sexist, much?
Disgusting, much?

Ugh.

The latest travesty to hit social media pertains to an author, Kathleen Hale, who writes Young Adult, and how she got so obsessed with a reviewer for using a fake name, she investigated, tracked down, stalked and eventually SHOWED UP AT THE WOMAN'S FRONT DOOR, called her work and then wrote this "article" about being "catfished" - and the whole time I'm thinking - Why do you think the reviewer was using a fake name? Uh, maybe to avoid upset/out of line/stalkerish authors?
DUH.

Now, what do these stories of human stupidity have in common?

Social media.
Twitter has played a major part in exposing, hashing, continuing, and otherwise, beating these stories to death over and over again - with trolls, haters, apologists, everybody alike, offering their opinion on each story, as if the world needs one more opinion in the ether.

I'm guilty of it.
You're probably guilty of it too.
Sometimes, I can't HELP but sub-tweet about it. It's like I need to get my opinion out to somebody that might care/listen/understand/agree.

However, by continuing to discuss these "stories" the people involved, ie. John Grisham, Kathleen Hale, the trolls of Gamer Gate, they are getting the chance to be in the spotlight (be it good or bad), and I am reminded of the commonly repeated adage -

DON'T READ THE COMMENTS…

After any news article, YouTube Video, explosive blog post, etc. there are always haters, trolls, idiots, apologists, extremists and just plain crazy people who do their best to continue the conversation.

And it occurred to me today that my Twitter feed has become one long COMMENTS section.

We're all commenting on what's happening, and I agree it's good to stay informed.
But, for me, personally, I'm going to (try!) to stop making comments about explosive stories, because really, I don't want to further these idiots any farther than their own idiocy can do.

I'm part of the problem.
Perhaps, so are you.

Let's stop furthering craziness and get back to connecting with each other on a civil level, because right now, Twitter is just a cesspool of hate, anger, and finger-pointing, and I can't stand it any more.

DON'T READ THE COMMENTS...

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Authors Pirating Endorsements

I am witnessing a trend on Twitter, which I must say, it rather disturbing to me.

Writers, be them traditionally or indie pubbed, are creating pictures to promote their books using photos of celebrities, TV shows, and movies.

Now, you might think, "This is marketing genius!" Post a pic of Brad Pitt (just an example!) next to a pic of your book and people's eyes will stop on Brad's picture, and then scan over to see your book cover, and WHAM! A possible book sale.

The problem with this philosophy?



You cannot use the likeness of any celebrity or model, TV show or movie, without PAYING for the right to do so.
No, you cannot scroll through Google and pull pictures of hot guys and use them to promote your book.
No, you cannot steal photographs of celebrities and do the same.

By PIRATING these pictures (that's right, you stole the image) and not paying the photographer and the celebrity for the right to use their image for promotional purposes you CAN (and should) BE SUED.

Don't believe me?
IT'S HAPPENED!

Actress Katherine Heigl went to a drug store and got photographed coming out with a shopping bag in her hands.

The drug store Tweeted the photograph, basically saying, 'HEY LOOK! Katherine Heigl shops here.'
And she sued them for using her likeness without permission, AND SHE WON 6 MILLION DOLLARS.

http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2014/04/10/katherine-heigl-sues-drug-store-for-6m-for-using-her-image/

UPDATE: Ms. Heigl dropped the case once the drug store made a donation to her charity of choice.

So, let me say this as clearly as possible: STOP IT

You can hashtag all day long, 'People who love #Buffythevampireslayer will love my book!' - but if you post a pic of Sarah Michelle Gellar next to a pic of your book - THAT'S ILLEGAL.

You could be sued.
And that's bad.
You don't want to be sued, right?

SO JUST STOP.

You're stealing.

And if authors are sensitive to anything, it's pirating.

Knock it off.


Tuesday, July 29, 2014

The Line Series Book Two: WALLED Purchase Links




Freedom means brutal choices.

Rebel lovers Naya and Ric have survived one year in hiding, raising Naya’s twins from infants to toddlers in the shadow of the brutal Auberge dictatorship.  They’re alive, and they’re together, but the city is crumbling around them and the haunting memory of Naya’s dark days on The Line have never fully left them. Living in isolation won’t be an option forever.

When a mysterious revolutionary seeks their help to infiltrate  Auberge’s electronic heart and shut it down, it’s an opportunity—it’s risky, yes, but if it works they’ll get out of the city and taste freedom for the first time. Naya needs this. They need this.

Beyond the broken walls of Auberge, Naya and Ric find the paradise they’ve always longed for. But with anarchy reigning and Naya’s children lost amidst the chaos, they’ll need to forfeit their post-apocalyptic Eden…or commit an unspeakable act.


Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Guest Blog at Carina Press

Hiya!

I did a guest post for my publisher's blog where I talk about my inspiration for CARRIER - click the link if you'd like to check it out: http://carinapress.com/blog/tag/anne-tibbets/

XOXO,
Anne

Monday, June 16, 2014

Friday, June 6, 2014

Honorable Mention Worth Mentioning

It's not every day a little known science fiction writer gets included on a list as epic as this.
I want to thank AudioBookaneers for finding me.

Below is the link they posted of the Top 25 Most-Anticipated Books of June 2014.
Among them is listed Stephen King, JK Rowling and the book, Rogues, edited by George RR Martin. I didn't make the top 25, but if you look hard enough you can find me listed under Rogues in the 'Also' section. I'm counting that as an honorable mention. :)

SQUEE!

http://audiobookaneers.com/2014/06/05/top-25-most-anticipated-books-of-june-2014/

XOXO - thanks guys,
--A.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

The Two Paths to Publication

I have noticed via "writerly" friends that many of the receive emails/tweets/notes from fans and/or other writers asking them for advice on how to break into the business of "authoring."
Yes, I realize I've created two new words.

For those who would like to ask my opinion on how to begin a career, I believe there are two ways to go about it.

1) The Traditional Route
Step 1: Write a great book.
Step 2: Query literary agents.
Step 3: Sign with a literary agent. If not, write another great book and begin again with Step 2.
Step 4 (optional - depending on your agent): Revisions.
Step 5: Submission to publishers.
Step 6: Wait.
Step 7: Offers from publishers. If not, return to Step 4 or 5 and begin again with a different book.
Step 8: Revision per editorial notes.
Step 9: More revision per editorial notes.
Step 10: More revisions per copy editor.
Step 11: Promotion, blog tours, cover reveals, etc.
Step 12: Book release.
Step 13: Repeat Step 11.
Step 14: Write the next book and begin again at Step 4 or 5.

2) The Self-Publishing Route
Step 1: Write a great book.
Step 2: Hire a freelance editor.
Step 3: Revisions per editorial notes.
Step 4: Hire a copy editor.
Step 5: Revisions per the copy editor notes.
Step 6: Hire a graphic artist for the cover and manage creative process.
Step 7: Hire a formatter, or learn how to format your own book per publisher guidelines.
Step 8: Promotion, blog tours, cover reveals, etc.
Step 9: Upload appropriate formatted versions to various publishers.
Step 10: Book Release.
Step 11: Repeat Step 8.
Step 12: Write another great book and begin again from Step 2.

As you can see, both routes have almost an equal amount of steps, although the traditional route does take a significant amount of time LONGER, as you deal with agents and the publisher's staff availability, tastes and schedules, versus hiring freelancers.

Both paths are valid, and hard work and both begin with the same first step: Writing a great book.

I wish you all the best of luck in which ever path you choose.
I know some authors that do both!

XOXO,
Anne

Thursday, May 8, 2014

How to Whore Your Books on Social Media Without Being Annoying

At the behest of a fabulous writer [Kristine Wyllys {THE WILD ONES} - go buy it!] I am endeavoring to write a suggestive blog post on how to market, promote and "whore" your books without being one of those authors you find so annoying you unFollow them on Twitter.

What Not To Do #1:
1) Do not tweet every single hour, even perhaps not every single day, with links to Amazon to buy your book. Psst - It's annoying.

What To Do #1:
1) Reserve tweets and FB posts etc. of links to your books if you get a good quote from a fellow author.
Ex. "[Other author's quote] [link to Amazon or independent book seller]" - then shut up.

I'm in promo-mode right now and I do this ONCE a WEEK. This is a mutually beneficial tweet. It markets the other writer and your book at the same time. Most likely, the other writer (at least, perhaps more) will reTweet you. Thank the other writer for the quote (profusely, they did you a huge favor), and for the reTweet - then shut up.

SIDE NOTE: Do NOT tweet every single blog review you get for your book. Reserve those tweets for a select few which either make you cry, or for a blog with an enormous following. And if you do tweet it, DON'T tweet or FB another link within the same week (including the author quote tweets). Otherwise, it's too much.

SIDE NOTE: If another author asks you to read and blurb their book - DO IT. Then you can promote the other author's book, and get your name around at the same time, which helps your sales. Mutually beneficial exposure is a good thing.

What Not To Do #2:
2) Do not take photos of celebrities, or stock photos you haven't paid for, and post or Tweet them as promotion for your books.
A) It's against the law, and B) It's inconsiderate.
Would you want YOUR picture used to promote a product without your consent?
Recently, Katherine Heigel sued a drug store for tweeting a picture of her holding one of their shopping bags. Actors and models GET PAID for their image. So, stealing their likeness to sell your product is no better than an on-line "library" taking your book and giving away free copies. It's pirating.
STOP IT.

What To Do #2:
2)  Visit the many numerous stock photo websites and BUY and/or LICENSE (legally) a picture, slap a quote on it from your book and FB post or Tweet it - ONCE. You can use it on your FB page or Twitter as a cover photo, put it up on your blog, and post it on your website - but tweeting the same photo over and over again is annoying and repetitive.

SIDE NOTE: If you write erotica, make sure the pic is PG-13. I one time saw a pic of a woman grabbing her crotch as an advert. for an erotica book and I was disgusted. If you want to promote how sexy your book is, keep it tasteful.

What Not to Do #3:
3) Be pushy.
Agents, bloggers, readers and editors alike love to talk about books on Twitter and FB. Do not tweet directly at them with your recommendations, it's considered bad form.

Ex. "I saw on your website you like clown stories [insert link] is my book about clowns!"
Or, "Read my book [link], I need an agent/editor/reviewer."

Um. RUDE! They didn't ask for your book recommendation. STFU!

What To Do #3:
3) If a writer, reader, blogger, agent, editor - whoever - ASKS or tweets, FBs or blogs about how they wish they could find a book like [insert type of book here], feel free to promote yours or someone else's book, if it fits the criteria.

Ex. Agent Tweet: "Gee, I wish I could find some gritty NA."
Me: "You'd love THE WILD ONES by Kristine Wyllys, in that case."

Ex. Reader: "Looking for a book that tackles childhood depression. Any recommendations?"
Me: "I humbly suggest SHUT UP by me [insert link]"

Then shut up.

If they don't ask. Don't pimp.
If they ASK, politely pimp away.
Then shut up.

You catching on yet?

Other Methods of Social Media Whoring:

A) The cover reveal.
 - These are great. If you participate in a cover reveal for your soon to be released book, thank each person for tweeting your cover, but DON'T retweet every single one. The people on your feed are already getting bombarded with your book cover, don't make it worse.

B) The blog tour
 - These are great, too. Same rule applies. If a blogger tweets a link to their review, thank them, but don't retweet every single one. Same reason. Too. Much.
- If you feel the need to retweet ONE, do so. Then?
You guessed it!
Shut up.

C) The book trailer
 - Book trailers are a fantastic way to spread awareness of your book. I caution, however, don't make a bad one, because it will have the exact opposite affect.

Ex. I saw a romance author re-enact the love story in her book using pictures of her dogs and their squeaky toys.
NO JOKE.
Perhaps it was meant to be funny - but all I kept thinking was, "She's kidding, right? Please tell me she's kidding. Please. Omg, this is soooooo horrendous."

If you don't have the means to make a good book trailer, just don't make one. It's better to have no trailer, than one that is embarrassingly bad. Embarrassingly bad also equals stock photos put together on your iPhone with stolen music and a crappily recorded voice over, or floating text. There are a billion of these types of book trailers out there and they don't help with book sales. If you want to make one to entertain yourself, just show your mother and best friend - because in all truth, they're the only ones who will think it's as cool as you do.

If and when you produce and/or pay for a professional book trailer, put it up on YouTube, perhaps hire a PR firm to do a trailer reveal (similar to a cover reveal), post it on FB, Twitter, etc. ONCE - and then…

Care to guess what I'll say…?

That's right!

SHUT UP.

The simple truth to whoring your books on social media is just that…Keep it simple.
Yes, promote yourself.
Yes, promote other books and other writers.
Yes, do the cover reveal, blog tour and have a book trailer professionally produced - but then...?

I don't even have to say, do I?

AMENDMENT:
Once your book is out and in the world, you should stop with the weekly promotional tweets, unless you get an incredible review from a blog with an enormous following.

The best promotion you can do AFTER the cover reveal, blog tour, book trailer and launch?
WRITE THE NEXT BOOK AND DO IT ALL OVER AGAIN



Wednesday, April 30, 2014

An Attack on Privacy

A terrible thing recently happened to a friend of mine that called attention to an issue with Facebook, and I thought it prudent to blog about it.

As many of my regular readers know, I have many an issue with Facebook, my most recent complaint being their change in their saturation algorithm which makes having a professional page useless unless you pay them to "boost" your posts - but there's something else which bugs me.

I have two Facebook "accounts." One is my now useless professional page which I maintain for the people who think having a FB page makes me look legit, and the other is my personal FB page which I keep to people I know in real life, with a few minor exceptions (writerly types I've met and conversed with extensively through other FB pages or Twitter).

If I change my cover photo on my personal FB page, it automatically becomes a public post. This means I can NEVER use a picture of my kids, my house, or anything snarky and sarcastic (like memes or scenes from movies) because it automatically goes to everyone in the entire universe who looks me up on FB, and I don't want to be sued for copyright infringement.

All my regular posts are secured to show on my 'Friends Only' setting, but it's always bugged me about my cover photo - but whatever, right?
No big deal.

But apparently, it's trickier than that.

Frank Piccioli is a union leader for the City of Phoenix medics, 911 operators and various other public workers, and posted a news article to his PERSONAL page calling a member of the city council an asshole.

Now, I don't personally know if this council member is an asshole. But I know Frank very well, and I trust his judgement thoroughly. So if Frank called him an asshole, he probably is.

That being said the article somehow became public and the lovely vice mayor of Phoenix, Jim Somebody I Won't Even Dignify With His Real Last Name, printed Frank's comments (including Frank's personal FB picture which featured him and his fiance's daughter) and then passed out copies at a city council meeting.

Of course, the press then got a hold of Frank's comments, and then the press started Tweeting, writing, blogging, and posting articles of their own, all featuring pictures of Frank's Facebook post and comment.

Now, in case you missed it above, remember Frank's profile pic?
The one with him and his fiance's daughter?

Now, I don't know about you - but I have daughters. Two, to be precise.
Given that I have a public on-line persona, I try my very best to keep pictures of my kids off the internet.
If they ARE on the internet, I don't want them tagged with my, or their names.
They don't have FB accounts. They don't have Instagram, Twitter - nothing.
I'm a little crazy with the over-protecting thing, but I've also had friends LOSE their teenage daughters after meeting some dude on Facebook - and that's not even an exaggeration, a friend's daughter RAN AWAY with a guy she met on Facebook and they NEVER SAW HER AGAIN.
She's gone.
She's either trafficked, or dead, or who knows what, and it's a horrible horrible nightmare no parent should endure - so I am not light when I say you should not allow your minor children to interact with strangers on-line, and a part of that, is not allowing their photos to be spread all across the internet, or the press.

I am personally FLABBERGASTED that a public official like the Vice Mayor of Phoenix would willfully endanger the safety of a minor child by passing around her photo to a pack of reporters who are then OF COURSE going to spread it all over the internet, all in the interest of punishing Frank and his union for calling another council member an asshole.

This, my friends, is why I HATE 99.9% of politicians.
They simply don't give a fuck who they hurt if it serves their purpose.

Also, add this to another reason why Facebook is becoming more and more dangerous.
Your private opinions are not private.
Your photos are not private.
Your political rants are not private.

It is open season, folks.
Anything you say WILL be used against you in the court of public opinion.

Be careful.

UPDATE: 5/3/14

The press did a surprisingly nice move the other day and upon finding out that the profile pic contained the face of a minor, they blurred out her face.

THANK YOU!
I am not a fan of most "news" organizations, but I am impressed that integrity still exists amongst the press.
Well done.

HOWEVER -


Apparently the asshole politician? You know the one I wasn't sure if he was actually an asshole? He took the flyer with the Facebook post and the profile pic, and posted it on HIS Facebook page - so, now he's distributed the SAME pic of a minor - AGAIN. Apparently, he IS an asshole. 

His name is Sal DiCiccio. My hatred of politicians remains intact.

UPDATE: 5/6/14

First I want to thank all of you who continue to keep apprised of this situation. As you can guess, it has been quite traumatic for my friends, and I wish them some semblance of peace.

Sadly, however, this circumstance will not end to their satisfaction. And if you have a soul at all, you will understand how very unjust this ordeal really is, and the pain it has inflicted.

My friends had a meeting with the Vice Mayor in regards to his taking the picture down and/or issuing a public apology. He FLAT OUT refused, but he was kind enough [sarcasm] to give my friends a speech about the proper use of Facebook.

In other words, he couldn't care less if he endangered the life of a minor by publicly facilitating the publication of the photo of a minor child, not his own. He really doesn't give a fuck.

This, of course, makes me desperate to find a photo of him sunbathing nude, or bending over to pick a penny off the pavement, or some such embarrassing thing, but then I would be as soulless as that asshat and frankly, he isn't worth the effort.

He's also not worth the air he breathes, but, you know…sticks and stones.

All I can say is that if you feel the weight of injustice and wish to do something about it, I encourage you to contact Jim Waring's office, and be sure to tell them how you feel about this situation.

I also encourage anyone who lives in the Phoenix area to remember this come election time.

On a more positive note, the office of Sal DiCiccio retracted the photo on Facebook, and issued the mother a written apology - so I guess he's not as much of an asshole as Waring is.
Good on ya, Sal.
Don't do it again.


Thursday, April 24, 2014

Book Trailer Reveal

Want to be a part of the CARRIER book trailer reveal tour?

Sign ups are here:  http://xpressobooktours.com/2014/04/23/trailer-reveal-sign-up-carrier-by-anne-tibbets/


Here's a sneak peek:
Photos by Jordan Rassulo






CAST:
NAYA: Briana Wilson
RIC: Connor Ficcadenti
AUBERGE GUARDS: Alex Vaiangina and Justin Goslee
GIRLS ON THE LINE: Anna Ross, Beatriz Adriana, Dana Hathaitham, Hannah Bank

Monday, April 21, 2014

The CARRIER Book Trailer Shoot - Anne's Diary

If any of you follow me on Instagram or Twitter, you would have seen some pictures I took of the CARRIER book trailer that was shot this past weekend.

I wish I could adequately describe to you what it felt like to watch CARRIER be brought to life in front of my eyes, but I can't seem to find the right words.
Here, let me try...

I've written scripts for television before, so I know what it feels like to have my words spoken back to me through the television set - but these were all freelance scripts I sold to someone else's show. These were not characters I created, but ones that already existed. I was just putting words in someone else's mouth.

But to have the world of Auberge come to life (the city where CARRIER takes place), to have characters I'd only seen in my head come running past me - it was an emotion I can't quite articulate. To say the least, it was overwhelming. If I didn't know any better, I'd say it was freaky enough to make me lose touch with reality for brief moments in time. Like some sort of sick and twisted deja vu.

The first location of the book trailer shoot was in an alley in downtown LA. This alley was off 6th street and came with it's own cardboard house, yelling homeless residents, a discarded rubber glove on the ground next to a glob of petroleum jelly, smears of and an actual pile of human feces, and a river of urine running down the middle of the road, which pooled at a drain that had long ago stopped draining anything.

The smell! Oh my God. The smell!

In CARRIER, one of the most distinguishing factors of Auberge, the corporation that owns the city, is the smell. The air is so toxic it makes Naya nauseous throughout the entire book.

To then have the lead actress playing Naya coughing and covering her nose and complaining about how the air tasted badly, and then to experience that myself! - it was like listening to Naya step outside the Line for the first time. It was like being Naya as she stepped out of the Line for the first time.
There were actual moments as I stood in the alley, smelling that horrific stench, that I teared up - because if I could barely stand it for just a few hours, imagine what it must have been like for the people in Auberge to live in that 24/7, not to mention the real life man who lived in the cardboard box down at the end of the alley. It was too much to bear. Too much. By the time that location wrapped I was cranky as hell and desperate to get out of there. Desperate. If I could have, I would have run back to base camp and left the rest of the crew in my dust.

Another aspect of the shoot which brought me to near tears was when we created the hallway of the Line. In the book, naked girls are lined up, inspected, and assigned "appointment" rooms. These imaginary girls were then expected to get raped by ten men a day, seven days a week, until their bodies gave out, or they died.

Since we were limited by the confines of REAL LIFE (thank God!), we couldn't exactly hire actresses to strip down naked and line up in the hallway of a sex factory, so our director, Wes Armstrong, found a hallway in a television studio, dressed it with Auberge logos, and we hired four actresses, plus our lead, to wear distressed tank tops and underwear and to simulate the motion of an assembly line of girls entering and exiting an appointment room. Plus, we had a "guard" in full tactical gear patrolling the hallway. And - WOW - the image of these girls - HOLY MOTHER OF GOD - did these actresses knock it out of the park - I WAS A MESS!

If I stood on set and saw the girls, their real life faces with smiles and laughing and chatting between takes, I was fine. But the moment the camera was rolling, and they were in character, and I was in the control room watching them from behind the screen, them suffering as girls on the Line suffered - I couldn't handle it!

For better or worse my two daughters were at the shoot with me, and they wouldn't leave me alone.
"Mom, are you crying?"
"Mom, are you okay?"
"Why are you covering your eyes?"
"Mom?"

It was like watching my worst nightmare. My. WORST. Nightmare.
It's one thing to have written about it, and create that horrible place - it was all in my imagination, safely locked away in my mind's eye. But to have it VISUALIZED - and done sooooo well -
it quite literally wrecked me.

But because I'm a "professional" and because my daughters were there, and because I didn't want anybody to know what I was REALLY going through, I made a few comments about how it was really, really disturbing and sucked back my emotions - but the truth was, I wanted to go hide in a corner and bob back and forth like a lunatic.

It was like shoving a person with claustrophobia in an elevator.
IT FELT LIKE THAT!

I was beside myself. And then, thankfully, mercifully - it was done.
I shook hands with the actresses (again, they REALLY did an amazing job), and handled business and was all smiles. But internally - holy shit in a bucket - TURMOIL.

For the second half of the studio shoot, we moved to an "appointment room," and had the main character inside, Naya, while several different "johns" entered.
There was not much to it, technically. And it was shot minimally, but creepily. It was not AS disturbing as the girls lined up in the hall.
BUT STILL -
It was damned uncomfortable.

The actress, Briana Wilson, did a fabulous, fabulous job of showing Naya's vulnerability and her strength, and Wes, the director, kept asking me questions about her frame of mind, and how did I like this shot? And how was that? Keeping me involved and keeping the mood of the room just on the cusp of fun and business.

But all I kept thinking was that I wanted to leave and go hide in a corner, any corner - maybe have a gin and tonic, or go stand in the parking lot, alone, and smoke a cigarette, or two, or six (and I don't even smoke!) - but no, I'M A PROFESSIONAL and I held it together.

They finished the shoot. I was all business, took care of closing down and cleaning up the studio - gave out tee shirts and pens to the crew as a thank you - all smiles and hand shakes and thank yous.

But I'm telling you right now - after you have seen the darkest regions of your imagination come to life - you are never the same again.

Or, at least for the last few days since the shoot, I haven't been the same.
Maybe I'll feel "normal" again after a day or two?
Maybe?
I hope?

But even despite all that mental anguish, torture, and uncomfortable feels - to show you, my readers, just a taste of what I was trying to show in CARRIER - it will change you. And to me - that's worth every ounce of angst.

It's true what they say…

A picture is worth a thousand words.






Wednesday, March 5, 2014

The Art of the Blurb

Let's say you are a writer!
That's not a far stretch of a guess, considering you're reading my blog.
But let's assume you are - even if you're not.
Got it?

Let's say you're a writer who has an agent, and has been out on submission, has gotten a multiple book deal from a real life publisher, and you have two books coming out this year …

You're sitting pretty sweet. Aren't you?
It's all up from here! WOOT! Good for you! ;)

Let's say you are in the beginning stages of planning your marketing push for the first book to launch this year, and all that confidence and knowledge you've gained from getting an agent, being out on submission, getting a multiple book deal from a real life publisher, and having two books coming out this year - IT'S GONE.

Poof!
Like a wisp.
You are back to feeling like a complete idiot and a nobody. Just. Like. That.

Do you want to know how someone who appears to be sitting so pretty can all of the sudden be reminded of how a creative business like publishing has a 95% rejection rate?

Blurbs.

Author blurbs are those lovely little quotes other famous writers give to someone else's book.
"A fantastic read that kept me up all night!" - Signed, some writer you've probably heard of

To get these blurbs for my first book coming out this year, I asked a few traditionally published authors that I knew:  "How do you do it? Is there a particular procedure one needs to go through to obtain author quotes?"

I'm the first of my writer's group to publish so unfortunately I had no close buddies to ask, but the authors I approached were kind enough to respond.

The procedure? The "correct" way to get an author blurb?
Just like there is no one way to getting published, there is no one way of getting an author blurb.

The advice I got from the other authors was all different.

Method #1: Have your agent contact the agent of the other writer, and do the asking for you.

Method #2: Ignore method #1, that won't get you anywhere. Ask the author's directly, they respond better to the personal touch.

Method #3: Ask your writer friends for referrals. Don't email writers you don't personally have a connection to - it's like Six Degrees of Separation - "We both mutually know [So-in-So] and he/she suggested I contact you. Would you like to read my book, and if you like it, give a blurb?"

Method #4: Ask your editor and agent if any of their other writers would be interested in giving a blurb.

Now, remember how I mentioned that traditional publishing is 95% rejection?

Well, it's 95% rejection all of the time, for everybody, even if you have an agent, have a publishing deal, blah blah blah - unless you are one of those authors that gets asked to give blurbs (in other words, unless your name and work are widely known by the public), then I imagine, it's quite a bit easier.

But for the rest of us commoners, it's a bit trickier - and I have a truck-load of sympathy for any author out there who is contacting their favorite writers, and querying for blurbs - because MAN -

There is nothing like having one of your favorite authors ignore you.

And here you thought agent and editor rejections were bad?
(Not bad for all of us, I am one of those sick and twisted individuals that didn't mind agent and/or editor rejection - I always figured that if they passed, it was for the best)
…But to have your idols reject you?

That's way rougher on the ego.

Ego.
Ha.

As if this industry allowed one.

Don't get me wrong!
This is a good problem, and any person sitting in this position would be a fool to wish it otherwise - but I just have to say, with each new lesson I learn about the publishing industry, my skin thickens and callouses and my mind grows sharper and more shrewd.

I have just begun the blurb process, and I have 1 writer willing to read the book without guarantee of blurb - but it's a good reminder.

Don't sit back.
Don't relax.
Selling books is a hardcore business.

Even the small parts are hardcore - even a one-line quote on the book's Amazon page which most people don't bother reading anyway.

Just keeping it real, folks.
--Anne


Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Carrier Links



CARRIER
By Anne Tibbets



Publication Date: 6/16/14


Twenty-two -year-old Naya has spent nearly half her life as a sex slave in a government institution called The Line. Excommunicated after getting pregnant with twins, she's left with no way to earn a living and a horrifying choice to make: find someone to replace her at the institution by the time she gives birth, or have her babies taken in her stead.
Ric Bennett wants to help. A doctor with a history of aiding ex-Line girls, he runs a team of rebels that can delete Naya's records, prevent her from having to make an impossible choice, and free her forever. But when his plan is sniffed out, things get bloody, fast. The Line wants them back. The organization has discovered information about Naya and her twins that make them more valuable than just sex slaves. It makes them dangerous—and part of the The Line's larger plan.
As they hide from government search parties, Ric comes to admire Naya's quiet strength. And Naya realizes Ric might be a man she can trust. If they make it off the grid, they could build a new life. But first they'll have to survive the long, vicious reach of The Line.

QUOTES ABOUT CARRIER:

"It takes guts to tell a story like the one in CARRIER, and author Anne Tibbets has got plenty. The life that she creates for Naya is informed by our present day troubles and placed in a dystopian future. Yet, it feels as real and troubling as any of today's headlines.  It will compel your attention and haunt your dreams." - Bryce Zabel, author of A.D. After DisclosureSurrounded by Enemies and creator/Executive Producer of Dark Skies.

"CARRIER immersed me in Naya's world from page one and didn't let up until the end. This is a story full of strength, courage, and above all else -- humanity. A must read and I'm on pins and needles waiting for book 2!" -- Megan Erickson, author of MAKE IT COUNT

"CARRIER has all the makings of a breathtaking read: Vivid settings. Thought-provoking story. Swoony love interest. And a plot that will keep you turning the pages.” — Stina Lindenblatt, author of TELL ME WHEN