Continuing on the Indie Giveaway theme, I’m pleased to share an interview with the author of the highly imaginative ‘Lana Harvey, Reapers Inc.’ series, Angela Roquet. You can win the first book in the series, Graveyard Shift on the giveaway.
While my series doesn’t contain vampires and werewolves, it is still considered Urban Fantasy, as the story takes place in modern time and it contains a variety of mythical deities and creatures commonly found in fantasy.
Where do you get your ideas for your books from?
I love studying world religions and mythology, and like most story ideas, mine began with a series of daydream questions. What would a modern afterlife look like? What if all the deities of every faith had to coexist on the other side, the same way we have to coexist on this side? What kind of terrorism might threaten a society like that? And who might I need to keep those rebels at bay? And that is how I met Lana Harvey, a Reaper employed by Grim at Reapers Inc., a thriving business in LimboCity, the capital of the afterlife.
Your covers look great! Did you pay an artist to design them?
I am a graphic designer, so fortunately, I was able to design my own covers. I get asked a lot about cover design from new authors who want to design their own covers, but don’t really know how to go about doing it or don’t think they’re talented enough to handle it. There are some really nice, simple cover designs out there that did not require a professional artist. If you can afford it, a professional cover design is great. But if you’re on a tight budget and want to DIY, my suggestion is to keep it simple. It’s okay to use fonts that are fancy, but make sure they are still easy to read. Go for a bright background color, or one that contrasts nicely with your text and images, and don’t underestimate the power of a simple, symbolic graphic. Get on Amazon or Goodreads and really look at the covers. You’re bound to find some inspiration and some examples that are simple enough to replicate.
How do you handle editing as an indie author?
I had three professionals with English degrees edit my first novel, and I still had a few typos slip through. I still find typos in traditionally published books too. It happens. As an indie author, I do not have a ton of books in a warehouse. They’re printed on demand, so I’m able to make corrections if I find an overlooked error. Which, as a perfectionist, I love! If you don’t have a few professionals at your disposal, there are still a few steps you can take to help ensure a grammatically correct novel. Make a list of the things you have the most trouble with, whether that be then vs. than, or grey vs. gray, and do a search in Word to make sure your usage is proper each time. Also, when you do your final read through, start at the end of your novel and read the pages in reverse order. This will help keep you from getting lost in the story. You’ll read slower and more carefully. If you want more tips on how to self-edit, subscribe to my Youtube channel. I’ll be posting a video in the next few weeks covering some common editing pitfalls.
What do you have coming out next?
“For the Birds” the third novel in my series “Lana Harvey, Reapers Inc.”, will be out in April 2013. I’m running in circles trying to finish it and simultaneously do edits. I would also like to release the fourth book in the series later this year, and possibly a standalone YA, either at the end of the year or early 2014.
Check out Angela’s amazing website