Kobo Writing Life Podcast
KWL EP 008 - Johnny B. Truant

Kobo Writing Life Director Mark Lefebvre interviews Johnny B. Truant author of the Fat Vampire series, and co-author of The Beam and Unicorn Western.  The two discuss:

  • How Johnny is continuing and concluding the Fat Vampire saga, which began as a joke during a discussion on the Self-Publishing Podcast, but became a series featuring a loveable, sympathetic and genuine hero (Reginald) rather than just a simple series of fat jokes.
  • Johnny’s evolution as a writer – specifically, how Johnny’s first novel, The Bialy Pimps, described as “Clerks” in a bagel shop, took him twelve years to publish it; compared to the incredible weekly word count he is currently producing (ie, 270,000 words for the Fat Vampire series in a single year)
  •  Giving oneself permission to simply write fast
  •  Johnny’s first collaborative novel project (along with Sean Platt) entitled Unicorn Western, and the hilarious origin story of how the series stemmed from a research argument on the Self-Publishing Podcast that led Dave to crack a joke about unicorns appearing in a western.
  • The Beam, an intellectual science-fiction series that Johnny is co-writing with Sean Platt
  • How outlining, or creating “beats” for a story helped Johnny to write fast
  • Johnny’s continuing experiments with his writing, including the layout and placement of the tools, such as keyboard, monitor, etc
  • Eminem as Johnny’s “go-to” musical artist to listen to while he is writing
  •  Johnny’s evolving philosophy on pricing strategies and funnels for writers, including making the first book in various series free
  • The call to action including choice of links to the other books and bundles in a book published as part of a series.
  • How the product image for The Beam books one through six is a three dimensional image conveys something one might normally only see when holding or looking at a physical boo
  • How there is no instant fix or easy solution, but that being successful requires thinking long term, being patient and involves a lot of hard work
  • The satisfaction of helping other writers that Johnny receives from producing the Self-Publishing Podcast

For this episode’s side-bar note, Mark speaks about social media strategies, including how it’s not about “broadcasting” a message (such as “please buy my book”) but, rather, engaging with and participating and adding to a community (with a reference to Episode 004 with Mitch Joel)



Direct download: kwl_008_Johnny_B_Truant.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:46pm PDT

KWL EP 007 - Jacqueline Garlick


Kobo Writing Life Director Mark Lefebvre interviews Jacqueline Garlick, author of Lumière: A Fantasy Steampunk Romance Adventure (http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/lumiere-1).

Mark and Jackie discuss:

  • Jacqueline’s background in writing and experience working with SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators - http://www.scbwi.org/ ) under the mentorship of Ellen Hopkins (http://ellenhopkins.com/)
  • How Ellen Hopkins helped promote and nurture a beginning writer, helping them to believe that they could do it
  • The Niagara Retreat and Conference event (http://niagararetreatandconference.com/) that Jacqueline is a driving force behind
  • The self-publishing approach that Jacqueline’s agent suggested and supports
  • Taking the long-term approach as a writer, in both the indie and traditional publishing spaces, determining where a project best fits in an industry that is in flux
  • How the X-Ray machine used to be seen as a cure for everything
  • Themes in the novel, such as:  Science created for good being done for bad; and the concept of inclusion for a person with an internal affliction (epilepsy) vs a person with an external affliction (visible birth defect)– and what is more terrible to live with
  • What it was like winning and participating in the Donald Maass Breakout Novel Intensive Scholarship (http://maassagency.com/)
  •  How self-publishing actually “takes a village” or, in Jackie’s case, a team that includes a photographer and an animator
  • The types of questions that are important to ask when hiring an editor, a designer, etc

As part of this episode’s soliloquy, Mark speaks about the importance of networking for writers, why attending local writing groups, conferences and seminars can be invaluable for a writer.


Jacqueline Garlick’s website: http://jacquelinegarlick.com/

Facebook Page : https://www.facebook.com/pages/Jacqueline-Garlick/1395763840647691

Twitter: https://twitter.com/jackie_garlick

Lumière on Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/lumiere-1


Direct download: kwl_007_Jackie_Pynaert.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:34am PDT