So with Dragonfly Warrior being released early and my getting to reunite with friends and family, I've had the dreaded question posed to me:
"What's Your Book About?"
I love science fiction and fantasy, so of course my debut novel is science/fantasy-related. Almost all of my family and close friends don't read "that stuff." They either read romance, nonfiction, or just the newspaper. Many of them have purchased my book, but I'm pretty sure a tiny percent of them will actually read it.
While I truly appreciate their support, knowing they did it just to support me makes me a little sad.
So how do I answer the dreaded question? Usually it goes something like this:
"It's science fiction/fantasy. Steampunk actually. Lots of adventure and action." And then I'd kind of dismiss them. Why? Because I'm pretty sure the person inquiring wouldn't want to actually read my science fiction/fantasy novel. And I admit, I'm a little embarrassed to say that I write genre fiction. But I'm also bothered by how quickly I dismiss others.
Now, if I was surrounded by my fellow geeks, I'd have no problem going on and on about the cool steampunk machines in my book. The awesome action scenes, the mix of all kinds of world mythology. I could easily talk their ears off about my book.
But what about those that don't read the kind of books I write?
Not only do I struggle with that embarrassment, but I think I'm a bit of a science fiction snob. It's not right of me to dismiss others like that. Just because someone doesn't exactly fit in our "club," it doesn't mean that they wouldn't enjoy my book or others in the same genre. A few of my beta readers don't read science fiction or fantasy at all, and they said they loved it. They were surprised by how much they enjoyed it? Why? Because underneath all that steampunkery and science fiction/fantasiness...it's just a story after all.
And who doesn't love a good story?
So the next time someone asks me, "What's your book about?"
I will not be such a jerk. I will look them straight in the eyes and reply, "It's about a naive sent on a quest out into a cruel world to save his people."
2014 will be the year of inclusion for me. I will promote and market my book to anyone willing to read/hear what I have to say. Because it's the story that draws readers in. The story, the characters, the conflict. That's what counts.
Oh yeah, and my book has kick ass steampunk in it too.
* The paperback version of Dragonfly Warrior is NOW available. Click HERE to go to the Amazon link. Sales were brisk early on, with friends and family buying my book. Now, I'm dead in the water. It's a marathon, not a sprint, right? If you want a personalized and signed copy, let me know in the comments. I'll reach out to you and get that going.
* I've decided to create a mailing list. I promise not to fill your inbox with junk. Just quick announcements and such. 2014 is going to be a big year, as I've got some pretty HUGE goals set. Wanted to keep people updated of my books coming out. The sign up is below.
* I want to do a very EASY blog tour. I have never done one of these before. I will reach out to those who did the cover reveal and see if you're interested. I'll also put up a new sign up form in the coming weeks. I'm thinking of doing the blog tour sometime in March.