Independence is ingrained is some authors. Lexi Revellian didn’t set out to be a rebel, but being an Indie author suits her just fine. While the publishing industry is roiling in turmoil, Indie authors are taking advantage. Amazon, take a bow, not that Amazon set out to destroy the big publishers. (Or are they?)
With as few as 120 new fiction authors being published each year by U.S. publishing houses, is it any wonder that fiction authors are writing eBooks and publishing themselves? The fact that they make more profit selling a $2.99 eBook than a $24.95 hardback might also have something to do with it, and once an eBook is published it’s potentially on the shelves forever, and as prominently displayed as their mainstream counterpart if you can drive the traffic. Actually, Lexi sells Remix for a mere £0.49UK and $0.99 US and Replica for £0.99 UK and $0.99 US.
Her first stories were fantasy, but her recent work is contemporary, so from really make-believe to reality make-believe, it is mostly a matter of the world your characters play in. She also has 2 short stories you can read from her website.
1. Many authors have multiple occupations. You are a jeweller and silversmith. Do you use your work experiences to help make your writing feel real?
I think writers use all their experiences; a novel is a patchwork quilt of thoughts and observations. In Remix, the heroine restores rocking horses for a living, which is a hobby of mine, so I was able to put in authentic details which readers say they like. I haven’t used jewellery as a background; maybe I’m too close to it. I also use some of my daughter’s experiences, too – for instance, she studies Jitsu, and advises me about fight scenes. That’s very handy; the main male character in Replica is a Jitsu brown belt.
2. I love English movies and humor. With a little humor, do you suppose the English are just more sophisticated than most of the world?
We like not to be seen taking ourselves too seriously. American humour is great too, and exports nicely to this country. I dislike novels with no humour at all, and can’t imagine writing one.
3. It sounds like your impression of the publishing industry is much the same as mine. Amazon seems to be the savior for writers, but for how long? There are a lot of desperate writers?
I don’t think the number of writers, however desperate, is the problem. Bad books will sink to obscurity and trouble no one except their authors; readers will be able to pick out the good stuff.
Amazon did not set out to support Indies, that’s just how it’s working out right now. This may be a golden window of opportunity that will never come again. The publishing industry is in turmoil, and has not got to grips with eBooks. But it can only be a matter of time before they actively seek to get the same stranglehold on eBook sales as they have on bookstore sales. If they got their act together, they could squash us like a bug. I feel lucky to have published at this particular time.
4. In seeking fame and fortune, the odds are pretty poor for writers. For me it’s almost an addiction. Are you compelled to write no matter what?
I wouldn’t say no to fame and fortune. Writing is a lot of fun when it’s going well, like reading a really good book but even better. I’m quite a persistent person, so I peg away through the harder bits of completing a novel, and don’t give up easily. Right now I’m taking a breather and thinking about my next book. I don’t feel compelled to write every day no matter what.
5. Blogging is fun. How has blogging helped your career?
Blogging is good discipline as well as being fun and helps to clarify my thoughts. I write at least once a week. I started because it seemed a good way to promote my writing, but I’ve no idea how much it’s helped – I think my website is more for readers, my blog for fellow writers. I’ve met some nice people through my blog, and picked up a couple of beta readers for Replica who were great.
6. Few writers have ulterior motives. I find I have quite a few. I write about hope for the future. Do you hope to change anyone’s habits, tolerance, politics, religion, or anything else with your writing?
No, though I agree with Plato that the artist has a responsibility not to make things worse. I do wonder about all those serial killer thrillers packed with gruesome details, and the people who want to read that for light entertainment. Slightly worrying. I don’t read books if I suspect they are trying to preach to me (I know Christian novels are big in the US, but they hardly feature over here). I write to entertain. Having said that, I’ve certainly been influenced and inspired by the behaviour of characters in novels; but that wasn’t the purpose they were written for, more of an accidental benefit.
7. I love movies so I write like I’m writing for the movies. I’m not sure if that’s good or bad. What is your take?
Good, definitely. It’s a compliment when readers say they can imagine your book as a movie. It means your novel is vividly alive in their minds.