Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Interview with Dawn McCullough-White

Briefly describe your journey in writing your first book. 
The first book I ever published came after years of writing novels (about 12) that aren't good enough to actually publish.  My first published novel is Cameo the Assassin a dark fantasy that follows the life of an unwilling assassin with some supernatural abilities.  I had written about Cameo from the time I was a teenager and several more times in my twenties, so I know her pretty well.  This time (age 37 at the time) I determined I was going to publish, though I didn't know how.  Then I got an offer for a friend, who is a professional editor, to edit my novel and another offer by a graphic artist to do the cover of my book for free.  Everything just fell into place as if I was supposed to publish this time around. 

Did you query agents or traditional publishers before publishing on Amazon?  Not with this book, although I have sent out a smattering of queries years ago and was pretty disillusioned by the process.  A good share of those queries were answered with form letters by people who had never even cracked open the novels.

What factors influenced your decision to self-publish?
I received advice from a couple different people, one self-published and doing well, and the other a well known trade card artist, to consider self-publishing and after looking at it that was the route I took. 

Did you design your cover art?  If not, would you care to share your graphic designer’s information? How involved were you during the creative process for your cover? 
My cover artist is Kurt Hanss.  He's a great artist and a good friend, and I believe I'm lucky enough to be the only author he's working with.  Here's his website:  http://www.hanssdesign.com/index.html

How did you feel when you got your first sale?  Are you pleased with sales so far? 
I was stunned when I received my first few sales, and yes I'm thrilled with my sales so far.  I spent a good twenty years writing novels no one (save a few friends) would ever read, so of course it puts a big smile on my face to think other people are actually writing my writing now. 

What is the biggest thing you’ve learned during your self-publishing journey? 
How to be my own advocate.  How to market myself and my novels. 

What kinds of social media [twitter, facebook, webpage, blog, writing forums] are you involved with trying to garner attention for your book(s)?  I have a Facebook fanpage and a website~  http://www.dawnmccullough-white.com  & a Facebook page.

Besides Amazon, are there any other sites where your books are for sale?
Cameo the Assassin  & Cameo and the Highwayman are offered for sale at Barnes and Noble, Smashwords, for Kobo, Sony, Diesel, iPad.  Cameo the Assassin is also offered in paperback at many other sites including Books a Million.

What’s next for you? 
I'm currently working on the 3rd book in the Cameo Series, and after that I'm planning to write something new, although I am considering a couple other projects that may take place in the world of Cameo.