Surviving Self Publishing


Surviving Self Publishing

Alexis Anne, Mary Chris Escobar, Anne L. Parks

RWA 2015

Below you will find a list of the topics that we covered in our workshop and links to resources that we have found helpful related to each area of discussion. Because we are always learning and the indie publishing landscape is constantly changing, we have continued to update a resource list at and encourage you to stop by there for additional information.

Also, we have included all our contact information at the bottom of this handout. We’re excited about indie publishing and all the amazing things authors can do and are doing. Please don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions you have, or just to say “hi.”

Most importantly, you’ve got this. Keep running your race in the way that feels most authentically, awesomely you. We’re right over here, cheering for you!

All the best,

Alexis, Mary Chris, & Anne

Resource List:

  1. Managing expectations: knowing what to expect, measuring success, finding readers, working with retailers, defeating the green-eyed monster (i.e. watching others succeed more quickly than you).

How Much Do Authors REALLY Make?

How I Make Six-Figures

Stages and Expectations of the Indie Writer’s Career

Industry News and Information

One author’s results from a Bookbub Ad

2.  Building a community: finding other writers for support, identifying good relationships, developing and nurturing a fan base, working with bloggers and promoters


Social Media and Building Relationships

Writer’s Cafe

NaNoWriMo Forums

3.  Selling books: advertising, promoting, and working with retailers- when do you get help, when do you pay for services, and when do you exercise patience?

The Art of Asking

Your First Pages and Selling Books

Tweeting is Not a Marketing Strategy

Building Your Email List to Sell Books

Tim Grahl: Your First 1000 Copies

The Basics of Marketing Your Book

4.  Having fun: using your outside talents and interests to feed your writing career

Example: Books & Brews:

Sharing Your Inspiration

5.  Staying positive: dealing with things that will bring you down (i.e. checking sales and rankings, reading reviews)

Dan Blank on Risk (and a great resource in general. Sign up for his newsletter!)

7 Things Indie Authors Are Doing Right

Success and Positive Thinking

Pepper Winters Epic Post on Reading Reviews

  1. Getting organized: developing a publishing schedule and setting short and long term goals

An Author Business Plan

JA Konrath is another tireless resource. Follow him. Tend Your Garden is a great one to read.

Author Entrepreneur

The Gold Rush and working in the publishing industry long term

Join our Facebook Group

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Presenter Bios & Contact Information

Alexis Anne is the author of The Storm Inside Series, The Tease Serials, Filters, and Undressing Cara in the anthology, One Week in Wyoming. She holds a master’s degree in Applied Anthropology and uses her experiences as a consumer ethnographer, archaeologist, and oral historian to write and market emotional, character-driven romance. She is a member of the Contemporary Romance Writers chapter of RWA, and the First Draught chat series.

Email: /Twitter: /Facebook: /Website:

Mary Chris Escobar writes women’s fiction. Her debut novel, Neverending Beginnings was published in 2012. A novella, Delayed, followed in 2013 and her latest novel, How to be Alive came out in June 2014. In addition to her weekly blog, her personal essays have appeared in the The Write Lifestyle magazine.

Mary Chris led a popular discussion about indie publishing at the 2013 James River Writers conference and participated in a panel discussion about research in fiction with the Focused Inquiry program at Virginia Commonwealth University. She holds a master’s degree in Counselor Education and is a member of James River Writers and the Women’s Fiction Writers Association.

Anne L. Parks has penned and self-published six novels, including a standalone and a completed five book series, since 2013. Her debut novel, Strangers, was published on her 45th birthday. Since that time, she has written four more full-length novels and a novella, completing her first full series, Return To Me. This year will be another busy one for her. In May, her first venture into paranormal romance will be published as part of an anthology. In late June/early July, she will have a Fourth of July themed short story included in a boxed set with eight other talented authors. A new series, Tri-Stone Demons Trilogy, will publish in mid-July, Mid-August and Mid-October. She also has plans for a suspense serial to be published throughout the year, as well as a fun, contemporary, blog-only serial.

Anne lives outside of Washington DC with her Navy husband, four children, and one very spoiled German Shepherd. When she is not writing, she loves reading (duh!), hanging out with her family and friends, and drinking wine. She has a full schedule of conferences and signing events this year, so find her and say “hello!”

You can contact her at:


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