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What Makes Self-Publishing Happen?

15 Jan


It Seems with the fall of commercial Publishers, there are more and more out there that are willing to put forth the effort and Self-Publish. I’ve written on this topic many times, but as a young ambitious writer, it’s fascinating to see it become a reality. For many of us, we struggle on a budget, but finding people or even family willing to support your efforts can really work. Here is one writers story, from an article I read in the New York Times by EDWIN MCDOWELL…

A Self-Publishing Budget

Evelyn Kaye, who had written 12 books, recently self-published ”Travel and Learn,” a guide to more than 1,000 study travel programs in the United States and abroad.

Ms. Kaye researched and wrote the book in six months, did the layout on her computer and paid a friend to design the cover. Then she paid to have 1,000 copies printed. ”I budgeted $5,000 for printing, design and postage,” Ms. Kaye said, ”and I’ve kept within that budget.”

To break even on the $23.95 book, she needs to sell just over 200 copies through the mail, or 400 copies in bookstores (which buy at discounts up to 50 percent), or a combination of the two. She said she already had orders for more than 210 copies.

”It’s hard work,” Ms. Kaye said. ”But there is great satisfaction in having control over everything about your book, from how many copies you print to what it looks like.”

She is a seasoned writer, with twelve books already under her sleeve, a painstaking road to getting her name out. But for writers who enjoy more than the profit, it’s just another luxury of finding what it is you contribute to this world. I find a lot of Self-Published writers struggling with the onset of price point, often finding that at 1000 copies, it’s hard to make a profit. Look at it this way, having your book out there, is better than anything. If you intend to share your story with the world, well, you’re doing it! It’s a slow snowball, that takes time to roll into the minds and hearts of all readers.

I am expecting my first run of “Feather” in about two weeks, and I am excited to be able to share it with my audience. Breaking even is the goal, because I believe my story will touch the hearts of all that read it, and perhaps change the mindsets of those expecting less from life.

I want to prove that Self-Publishing works, beyond the world of “Self Help”. There are so many authors out there, that can’t afford to wait for the expensive slow production of major houses, especially in the world of Fiction.

I believe Fantasy is at no loss for self-publishers though, purely based on stereotype, and I apologise. You don’t see many Chick Lit writers out there self publishing, there are the few, but not more than the world of Fantasy, the breeding ground of all computer nerds, including myself.

But back to the fall of major Publishers, it’s coming, and it’s only a matter of time. Already, my friend Brian Rathbone and I have challenged the world of EBook’s, making into the top three on MobiPocket for Fantasy. Both self Published, and both entrepreneurs in our own “write,” we’ve looped around the complicated path of submission and query.

Also from the same article…

The Biggest Paradox

Perhaps the biggest paradox is that at a time when commercial houses are investing a small fortune in money, time and energy trying to publish best sellers, self-published books – including some that were self-published and then bought by big publishers – are making the best-seller list with growing regularity.

Next week, for example, ”Life 101” (Prelude Press), a self-published book by John Roger and Peter McWilliams, will be No. 4 on the Advice, How-to and Miscellaneous list. And ”What Color Is Your Parachute?” by Richard N. Bolles, a guide for job seekers, has been on the Times best-seller list periodically for more than a decade; originally self-published, the Ten Speed Press edition has sold more than three million copies.

In the last year or so, a number of books that were initially self-published have become big best sellers, like ”Leadership Secrets of Attila the Hun” by Wess Roberts and ”The Book of Questions” by Gregory Stock, which was a best seller for 22 weeks (8 weeks at No. 1) and has sold more than a million copies in the Workman Publishing Company edition.

One of the biggest-selling hardcover books of the 1980’s, ”The One Minute Manager” by Kenneth Blanchard and Spencer Johnson, was self-published before the authors sold it to William Morrow & Company.

We have recently welcomed and endorsed Eckhart Tolle, one of the best examples of Self-Publishing success in the new age.

What makes it possible, is the highly networked world of today. People like you, whom have found this article across the lines of media and endless threads. Google, even Amazon help to spread the word, making self-made websites heavy hits, and blogs a fashionable hobby.

It seems the world has changed, and we rely on these changes to bring the voice of all people to a head. The freedom of Speech has never been so accessable, in a world of billions, where the other side of the earth no longer seems that far…

Thank you 🙂

Abra Ebner and Feather Book Series


Final Feather Book Cover…

10 Jan

Here is the final cover in it’s entirety. Look for Feather soon, coming out on paperback January 31st, see website for details…

Final Cover

Final Cover

The Battle over Book Cover Art…Word to the wise, Don’t let Stephenie Meyer design her own…

10 Jan

For most of us, it’s obvious that we leave the cover art up to the professionals…As seen here with Stephenie Meyer’s attempts at her own… craptastic is an understatement…

Being a Graphic artist,  has it’s upsides, but yesterday was the deadline for the cover art to be sent to the publisher, and needless to say it was a nail biter. I literally second guessed myself the whole way, to SEND. I even drove 30 miles to take a picture of my tree, that I love. Unfortunately that tree is on a major Highway, which is not fun when your out there, taking pictures, likely CAUSING an accident…

Anyways, I just hope it’s good, a hybrid of all the covers seen out there right now, the cat the tree the glowing etc etc. all that stuff Fantasy novels love on their covers…

Besides, do you really think that Stephenie could have ever sold her books with THOSE covers?? We can, and DO judge a book by it’s cover, it’s human instinct to do so. Just as we do with humans, the initial interest is purely based on look after all.

So in the end, I guess all we can say is that we did our best, sei la vie…

Book One is out the door, time for book two…

30 Dec

Feather: Book One is officially in production, due to release on paperback in one month, perfect for Valentines day 😉 (Jan. 31 get your’s today through website and Barnes & Noble!)

It’s now time to focus my energies on Book Two, Guardian. so far I have a convincing outline, a couple good dreams, and 20,000 words. It’s a good start. I’m not sure how long GUARDIAN will end up being, likely longer than the last by a few. (last was 352 pgs.)

So far I’m excited about the chemistry between all the characters, a lot of tension, twist, and humor. I live with a smart aleck, so it’s pretty easy…

I’ve been doing a lot of research, watching the old Highlander, The thrilling Golden Compass (it’s been on Dish a lot lately) and also Pirates of the CaribbeanFringe, and Gladiator

with a little The Saint thrown in there 😉

I love mixed inspiration…

The Most Inspirational Place in the World…

26 Dec

       One of the most inspirational places in the world. The North Cascades. This is where I got the inspiration For Feather Book Series, both from a small secluded institute, the North Cascades Institute, and Stehekin, Wa. Stehekin is a small secluded community I have been traveling to since I was very small, I have four friends that were raised there, and it’s interesting to see how different their lives were from mine in Seattle. They had real wood stoves to cook on, no cars or gas, no TV. and a very small log school. The only way to get to Stehekin is by hiking in, boating the 55 miles, or flying in on the seaplane.

The Hut from the scene in "The Meadow"

The Hut from the scene in "The Meadow"

     The North Cascades institute is located on Diablo Lake, on Highway twenty through the North Cascades. The two places are close, but you would have to hike into Stehekin. The world out here moves slow, a world where the forests still rule, and we must succumb to their needs and desires.
       There is magic here, and I encourage you to check out my new Flickr Photo roll of pictures my family has collected over the years.

Twilight, to me, was like being in love with my Peanut-Butter Sandwich…

22 Dec

It’s lunch time folks, and sad to say my sandwich and I are not eloping…

Who on earth can love their food THAT much, other than Edward Cullen.

I certainly haven’t told my sandwich that “We need to slow down, I have morals.”

and I certainly am not about to give it a diamond, or even attempt to make it pregnant, besides, I’m already married, and not to mention, straight.

The fact of being in love with your food, or anything you would ingest for that matter is a bit off…

I could see if she smelled nice ‘perfume’, not smells nice ‘num num.’

But really, wheres the flood here!? How did we let this happen!

Feather: Book One available on ebook and Kindle @ amazon

19 Dec

the book was released on kindle and ebook last night. you can find the Kindle at Amazon, and the ebook on the site…

you can also request a two chapter sample with a buy now button included if you want to try it out first

email either or for details…

I’m tired of reading books where the author just likes to hear themselves talk?…

11 Dec

I’m tired of the pages after pages of ongoing and unnecessary graphic explanation. What that tells me is that the author simply can’t sum it up in a few powerful and elequently placed words…

I like a story that flows, from one fact to the next. My last great example is probably “The DaVinci Code”

this book, for as controversial as it was, was so entertaining, so many plot twists and expertly mapped out mysteries. I found myself compelled to analyze the paintings in question to find the answers myself.

I enjoy a read that is pure entertainment, controversy aside, and beliefs aside.

But back to my point, I’m tired of the novels with a forced 100,000 words, instead of the beautiful and powerful short story version.

I think its different when the 100,000 words end up being what it took to tell the compelling story, but what i think we are getting away from is the books natural order.

A book is done when its done, and thats it.

so happy writing…

I need help choosing my inside cover artwork! :)

10 Dec

so here are the choices, I need votes people! THANKS 🙂





I drew them last night right before I went to bed, and I need to know if their even worth it ha ha

The inspiration behind “Feather,” and no it’s not “Twilight!”

10 Dec

I’ve been getting a lot of flack recently, and its sort of heart breaking… I’ve noticed in the list of top searches that a lot of viewers are searching the two together…  but they are SO different…

I just want to clarify where the inspiration for my gook came from, and it wasn’t Twilight, I just read those books two weeks ago, it is impossible to write an entire novel that fast…

Fringe: on NBC. there are some seriously eerie things going on with that show right now, and its a huge HUGE inspiration for me right now, especially with Book Two, which I haven’t yet named, and I’m hoping to hols a contest for that.

Highlander: the immortal warrior movie with the wonderful Sean Connery. There is a lot of good stuff in that film, love it! its a classic. The main character loses his love and is forced not just to live one life, but an eternity without her. That’s horrible. That and when he kills the other highlanders he gains power, I was inspired by that too. Besides, both my characters are inhumanly talented, not just one, and they do a lot more than suck blood, act strong, and run fast, I assure you.

and then Ghost: the great love story that spans across even death. when EVER have you seen a movie where the main character dies in the beginning and you’re still compelled to watch it! Amazing use of an idea, and I love it.

I don’t want to spoil my book for anyone out there, but assure you, it has nothing in common other than the horrible happenstance that the two names seem the same, but here are my inspirations/reasons for the names:

Edgar: Was my grandfathers Name, he died last year after a battle with blood clots and pneumonia. I loved him, and he was a strong man, saved his family from the Nazi German’s with nothing more than a leather wallet. I owe my life to him.

Estella or Elle: Okay so anyone who’s seen Legally Blonde could relate, I love that name, and my main character is naturally platinum like me, and no I don’t like blonde jokes…

So this is my nasty “I really didn’t want to have to” explanation…

It’s just that I don’t like being overshadowed, though it happens. I appeal to another audience anyways. I don’t really recommend people under 17 read my book. It can get rather gory, and the story is complicated and heavily woven. Theres a lot more to my book than a human loving a vampire, and better yet, theres no mention of a vampire anywhere in it!

but it is based on a real location. A college called the North Cascades Institute, beautiful place. My parents have a Sea Plane travel company, so they went there. Anyone can finds inspiration from that alone…