Sep 16, 2014
Listen in as KWL Director Mark Lefebvre interviews nonfiction
author Michael Rank, whose titles include HISTORY'S WORST DICTATORS
and FROM MUHAMMED TO BURJ KHALIFA: A Crash Course in 2,000 Years of
Middle East History. Mark and Michael discuss Michael's
podcast, History in Five
Minutes, self-publishing from a nonfiction author's
perspective, and the challenges and rewards of translating
self-published titles. Michael shares his thoughts about:
- His History in Five Minutes podcast, where Michael works to
share stories about things that challenge our assumptions
about the past, and the people who "shouldn't be there" in a moment
of history, according to our idea of that era of history.
- Utilizing the podcast to develop a readership, connect with
fans, and promote his books.
- "Think global, act local." There are many opportunities for
independent authors to go broad and deep: broad, by reaching a
global audience through online sales and translations; and deep, by
cultivating relationships with niche and local readers.
- Michael recommends trying Babelcube for their translation
- Through Babelcube, translators earn a share of royalties,
so they are invested in your success. Michael has worked with
translators to get help with foreign marketing, for example,
through translating reviews, Facebook posts, or tweets.
- It is important to educate yourself about writing and
self-publishing, but mistakes and failures are inevitable as you
work through the process of publishing. Accept and learn from these
failures, and find the opportunities that work best for you. The
podcast worked well for Michael, but he tried many other
things along the way that did not.
- Similarly, find a writing schedule that works for your life and
goals. As a PhD candidate, Michael knows that he can realistically
only write for one to two hours per day.
Following the podcast interview, KWL US Manager Christine Munroe
shares an exciting update: for the second year in a row, KWL is
sponsoring NaNoWriMo! Starting November 1, hundreds of thousands of
writers will endeavour to write 50,000 words within one month.
Several KWL and Kobo staff members are participating this year,
carrying on our KoBoWriMo tradition.
We'll keep the KWL blog updated with the trials and
tribulations of our fearless WriMos, the great prizes we are
offering this year, and more. Stay tuned!