A few weeks ago I wrote a book review for “Evertaster”. I’d like to introduce the author, Adam Sidwell, who has kindly taken a few minutes from his busy schedule to talk with me.
Adam, thanks so much for stopping by. I have to ask my burning question concerning part of “Evertaster“. Where did the joggling of the bovines idea come from? lol LOVE those happy, smiling cows!
Joggling of the Bovines comes somewhat from Tillamook, Oregon where you will see the most amazing udders dragging on the ground they are so big! They are as big as you or I, and they produce the most delicious cheese and ice cream known to man. Even Storfjell would approve of the fruit of those bovines, the nectar of moooo that comes out of those babies. It tastes so fresh when you eat it right there in Tillamook. So I thought, what if you could get it fresher? What if you could churn the butter while it was still inside the cows? This is the best, proven method of doing so.
What was your writing process like? Did you outline? Did you have a writing schedule?
When I write a story I like to outline the idea in a few brief sentences and then take notes about character, settings, plot outlines. These are very loose. I like to think about them for a few months, usually while I’m working on another project. I let it percolate. There’s a magical moment when that mixture ripens just enough and you have just enough detail and understanding of the characters’ struggle that the story pops out of your head. That’s when I begin to write. Once I start, I dont’ stop. I usually write 2000 words a day. I finish my first draft in 90 to 120 days. After that I step back for a few weeks and think about something else then go to revisions. When it’s revised 3 or 4 times. When I’m confident enough in the draft, I send it off to my agent and we continue to revise it together.
So, you do have an agent? How did you find them?
I do. Her name is Alyssa Henkin of the legendary Trident Media Group in NYC. She’s great, and she’s always been fighting for Guster. I found her by sending out queries, and one magical day she replied and said she was interested in the book!
Did you consider self publishing, or only traditional publishing? What was that process like?
Evertaster is actually a new hybrid of self-publishing and traditional publishing. I describe it in detail here: How an Unknown Debut Novelist Became An Amazon Bestseller in a Single Day http://www.evertaster.com/2012/06/16/how-an-unknown-debut-novelist-became-an-amazon-bestseller-in-a-single-day/
Can you share a bit about your marketing process?
Certainly! The secret is to tell everyone! Tell your grandma, tell your dad, tell your high school friends and kids from your 3rd grade class. Above all, make sure you tell Jen Owenby! You have to build up to the launch day and build a following on either Facebook or twitter or YouTube beforehand, then be willing to engage those readers individually. For me, it’s really fun, because I get to talk to people and hear what they think about the book.
Using Facebook as a platform for an online launch, my debut novel Evertaster shot up into Amazon’s top 100 list in a single day. It rose as high as #51 in overall books and claimed the #1 spot in Children’s Mystery right next to John Grisham’s latest novel and one of the Percy Jackson books. On that day, Evertaster passed up many of the currentNew York Times bestsellers as well.
And this all happened without the help of a publisher or an experienced marketing team. My agent at Trident Media Group was astounded at Evertaster’s immediate viral success, and she’s been around the publishing block. She said she’d never seen anything like it.
There were certainly a number of circumstances involved, but the Facebook Online Launch Event was a powerful tool to help Evertaster rise so high. Here’s why:
Facebook allows users to create events that differ from wall posts in the following ways:
- Events have a specific time and date associated with it.
- Friends can join, then decline or accept the event.
- Friends can invite other friends.
In the months leading up to the launch, I was very excited to tell all my friends about the book and show off the killer cover art that was being done by Goro Fujita, Dreamworks concept artist.
So naturally I wanted to show it off, and Facebook was a great place to do that. It is the perfect platform for authors to announce to the world and their friends that their book is coming out, especially because it allows so much interaction. In the months prior to the launch, the fan base for Evertaster grew to over 2,250 fans. Some of those were friends, but the overwhelming majority were not. This was an incredible place to start for the online launch event.
After you’ve created your Facebook event, you can click on “invite friends” to spread the word. You can also encourage others who are attending the event to invite friends as well. The advantage to having a specific time and place for your event is mostly this: people will remember to buy your book. We set our event for 12-2pm on launch day, and people were clamoring about it beforehand. It’s like having an online party — one that stretches across the world — and nobody has to get into their car or dress up to go. Once they get there though, they are expecting something fun. So in the case of Evertaster, I released a snippet of the book trailer I’d promised them. Then we also did a video recap of how things went. You can think of other creative media to share as well. It allows people to feel they’re part of something larger — which they are, and really makes for a fun hour in the middle of an otherwise boring work day. It is a great way to celebrate with the friends and fans of the book.
And the result? Well check it out:
How has “Evertaster” changed your life now that it’s reached the top 100 on Amazon?
It’s given me the encouragement to move forward. It’s a scary thing, when you put your work out there. It doesn’t mean you are a millionaire if you hit the bestseller list. It doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll even be able to make a living writing yet. But what it does mean is that there is a wonderful audience for your work that is beginning to grow, and it’s very exciting. It means that I get to write the rest of the series!
Will there be a follow up to Evertaster? A movie?
Well, we do have a mini movie: Click Here to see it.
And I’ve been approached by people looking to make a movie out of Evertaster. But those things take time, often decades to materialize. So right now I’ll just concentrate on writing the sequels. Look for Evertaster- the Delicious City to come out sometime next year! There will be 3 in the series.
What one piece of wisdom would you like to share?
The person you have to prove yourself to most of all is yourself. People will try to tell you that you can’t follow your dreams. You know what? Most of the time they’re right. But if you set a small goal, and then accomplish it, and then move on to the next one, you will know inside yourself that those dreams aren’t dreams anymore — they’ve become realities. Always do the right thing, I say.