Self-publishing is what you make of it: an interview with the author of The Artemis Effect

A couple Fridays ago, I featured a book cover from a new author, Kasia James. She’s also a blogger, and I’ve been following her writing pretty much ever since I started this site. That gave me the perfect opportunity to reach out to her and ask about her experience, her creative process, the pains of self-publishing, and what aspiring writers can learn from it.

Kasia James (author)Misprinted Pages: Is The Artemis Effect your first book? What is it about, in a nutshell?

Kasia James: Yes, it is, although I have a couple more — which are quite different — in the pipeline. The Artemis Effect follows the stories of three groups of people based in America, Australia, and Britain as they struggle to deal with the breakdown of society sparked by mysterious changes to the moon. It’s fast-paced, character-based science fiction.

You’ve been working on this for about 9 years. During that time, you wrote the book, sent it off to publishers, and then finally chose self-publishing. To get started, let’s talk about your experience writing the book. What inspired you to write this particular story?

Well, to be totally honest, much of the science fiction I’d read up to that point dealt with ideas and technology very well, but rather shallowly with people. I thought that I’d like to have a go at doing something different. I read very widely and eclectically, so it seemed to be a possibility within the genre that could have been more fully explored.

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Awesome book cover Friday: The Artemis Effect

I’m SUPER excited for my fellow blogger Kasia James, whose sci-fi book The Artemis Effect is now on Amazon for $2.99!

I love her blog, so I know I’ll love her book, too. Needless to say, I’m bumping this to the top of my reading list. :) Big congrats, Kasia!

The Artemis Effect by Kasia James

Here’s the description:

Three comfortable lives are shattered when a wave of inexplicable events exposes the fragility of human society. With an unprecedented celestial phenomenon, devastating high tides, a breakdown in global communication networks, and the sudden appearance of violent ring-gangs swarming through cities and towns, Kimberley, Scott and Bryn struggle to understand the vast events unfolding around them. Will they survive the Artemis Effect? Will they discover the truth behind the collapse of society before it’s too late?

In a recent post, she talks about the 9-year journey to write and publish her book — it’s very inspiring, especially to someone like me, who understands how life takes hold even though you have this unstoppable need to write a book.

Kasia actually turned to self-publishing after numerous attempts to interest a traditional publishing house as an unknown. I’m glad she did — that means I get to read her book! — and she’s brave for doing it. That method isn’t any less easy; in some ways, it’s even more challenging and a lot more work.

Huffington Post has a great article about how even in the year 2012, we still have trouble discovering talented new writers. Why? Publishing houses take safer bets on people who come with advantages — and bypass those who don’t. They have to balance reputation and profit, but with self-publishing, opportunity is unlimited.

The article mentions Writer’s Bloq as a safe haven from that — and the ironic requirement that a book “conform” to what’s hot or standard in the present industry. I’m glad I’m not the only one who finds that ridiculous.

Anyway — congratulations again to Kasia. :) This is great news.

Awesome book cover Friday: Die Anderen – or, The Sea People

Die Anderen, which translates from German to The Sea People, was written by Adam Lukens and published in 1959. My research dug up some interesting trivia about Lukens. According to the Feminist SFF & Utopia website, Adam was a she—Diane Detzer, to be exact, who was born on May 13, 1930, and used the pseudonyms “Adam Lukens” and “Jorge De Reyna.”

She was difficult to trace, but I did manage to find a short list of her works. Whether this is a complete bibliography is uncertain:

* Alien World [Avalon, 1963] as Lukens
* Conquest of Life [Avalon, 1960] as Lukens
* Eevalu [Avalon, 1963] as Lukens
* The Glass Cage [Avalon, 1962] as Lukens
* The Planet of Fear [Avalon, 1968]
* The Return of the Starships [Avalon, 1968] as de Reyna
* The Sea People [Avalon, 1959] as Lukens
* Sons of the Wolf [Avalon, 1961] as Lukens
* The World Within [Avalon, 1962] as Lukens

Not a big surprise to me, since women often resorted to male pseudonyms in order to get published, and women especially weren’t supposed to write sci-fi.

Thanks to Cassie for linking to a whole host of awesome German vintage science fiction covers.