An Honest Interview with A Published Author

Riley Blue

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What is the biggest lesson you have learned after self-publishing your first book?

That it’s not easy. I’ll share how I did it. I started drafting the book and simultaneously worked on designing the cover. It took me almost two months to finalize things. At points, I had a feeling where I thought I won’t be able to make it. Apart from all this, choosing a publisher who can support you as per your conditions is difficult. After all this I was able to publish, however, I had another question in front of me.

How to promote without spending a lot of money in one go? I did a whole lot of research for this as well. Connected with potential book reviewers all over the country. Then shortlisted a few influencers on Instagram, sent them the books. Paid what they wanted to be paid for. Waited for their response. Some of them did well while some utterly disappointed me. Some I am still waiting for a response. So, it was an interesting experience altogether.

The lesson out of all this: plan and don’t trust people on social media (I mean be careful).

What is a book marketing trick you learned the hard way?

Plan and don’t trust people on social media. Some might be very useful while others can be a waste of time and money. So it’s extremely important to plan and spend time to figure out a day-wise structure to follow. Or if you have the money, unlike me, hire a marketing team to do the work. Most importantly, take your work forward to people yourself. You are the face of your book, the more ‘you’ do the hard work, the more fruitful the outcome would be.

Paid reviews are a bad thing. I came across people who were ready to put multiple reviews in less than a hundred rupees. I wanted to keep things real. I wanted to know what people genuinely felt about the book. So, if you come across people who do paid reviews, please don’t go with it. Even if you decide to ask them to be fair to you and your work. This will help you in the long run.

Your book tells the story of the love between a man and a woman through poems. What gave you the idea of putting together a book like this?

Let me start by saying that love is a very strong and relatable feeling. Almost, everyone relates to it, easily. There are numerous countless novels and love stories that you can find and still enjoy them. They take you to another world, somewhere you want to be. Somewhere, you want to go and feel what the characters are feeling. This is the very reason I wanted to write my first book about love. Now the challenge was to present it in a “not before” manner. That’s when I thought I can write a poetry book and present it in such a way each poem exists as an individual poem while playing a small part in the overall big story, at the same time. So my book has poems, characters, characters’ arc and conversations.

Do you write only poetry, or do you have plans to write fiction in the future?

I am writing since the age of 12 years and mostly I have done since then is poetry. Though I love writing stories and have written a few in the past few years. Most of them are short stories so maybe I can compile them as a short storybook. Also, I am working on a few ideas of novels too.

Apart from writing the above-mentioned things, I have written a screenplay for a short film which is currently under production.

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