Self-Published Book Review: My A.R.R.A.: Growing Into Me

Book reviews are a great way for self-publishing authors to gain exposure. After all, how can someone buy your book if he or she doesn’t know it exists? Paired with other elements of your book promotion strategy, requesting reviews is a great way to get people talking about what you’ve written.
When we read good reviews, we definitely like to share them. It gives the author a few (permanent) moments of fame and allows us to let the community know about a great book. Here’s this week’s book review:

My A.R.R.A.: Growing Into Me J.C. Sykes

cipa evvy 3rd place book award

My A.R.R.A.: Growing Into Me

by J.C. Sykes

ISBN: 9781478787051

 

Synopsis*:

“A bird doesn’t sing because it has a voice, it sings because it has a song”

  • Maya Angelou

A memoir of inspiring perseverance over misguidance.

In this inspirational memoir, we meet a young woman forced to grow up too quickly when she marries at sixteen.  After only five months of nuptials, she loses her husband to an extended prison sentence, and become a single mother who must quickly learn independence.  Under extreme adversity and depression, the teen finishes high school on time to become a college graduate of her hearts passion.  Carlen shares her life story in the hopes that others will be motivated to persevere in the face of overwhelming  odds.  Inspired by a quote passed down from her father, “A quitter never wins and a winner never quits”, Carlen attacks her obstacles head on.  Will Carlen continue to maintai her sanity against all odds?

 * courtesy of Amazon.com

Featured Review

Your strength and courage to get through every obstacle you encounter is simply Amazing!!
(Verified Purchase)

Other Reviews

Good Read.

Its hard to think that real people do actually experience hardships and tragedies like this but I Love that the author was able to overcome her obstacles and come out better for them. Interested in what the next book will bring.

– reviewed by MissBC on Amazon

Usually when I start to read a book I never finish it but this book was actually good. It’s like you could feel everything she went through just by reading the different chapters. It also brings out different emotions when you start getting deeper into the book, because it’s something you can relate to and I cried a lil while reading it, because it hit so close to home. I can honestly say I love this book and I think she did an amazing job 😍

– reviewed on Amazon

 

 


tuesday book review

Thanks for reading!  Keep up with the latest in the world of indie and self-published books by watching this space!

Self Publishing Advisor

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Self-Publishing News: 9.18.2017 – New Releases!

september

And now for the news!

Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing, specifically new releases written by self-publishing authors and published by independent presses! Today we’ll be featuring brand-new releases in the Outskirts Press Bookstore!

Are you looking to kick off the school year with some current and relevant material on supporting diversity in the American education system? We are! Of course, we may be biased by the fact that we have personal connections to a number of students and educators who might benefit from Joseph T. Mayhew and Robert J. Hudak’s combined experience and expertise–but it would be the rare American who didn’t have some sort of tie to these issues. (The Six Degrees of Separation from Kevin Bacon thing works for a reason!) Suffice it to say, this is one of our top picks both for new releases and back-to-school reads. Disadvantaged children deserve a better future than the one they’re given, and special education–rightly and compassionately and thoughtfully administered–may help them find that future.

Not everyone’s looking for a five-alarm snot bomb of a book on the eve of Fall … but some people are, and here’s a fantastic new example of the form! This is the memoir of Peter Gordon, who was pulled out of his idyllic life (he’d been recently remarried, developed a thriving career, and lived in a beautiful mountain resort) by a case of leukemia. The only solution? A bone marrow transplant, an invasive and dangerous procedure under his specific conditions. The book copy calls this a “real-world healthcare saga for our times, offering insightful lessons for cancer patients, caregivers, and medical professionals,” and it’s not exaggerating the broad appeal of this fantastic book! Just make sure to bring tissues.

Some of us may not have run across a Gothic novel (NOT to be confused with ‘graphic novel’) since grade school, when we had to read The Castle of Otranto and Northanger Abbey and–oh? That was just us? Not you? Never mind. Still, Gothic novels aren’t what you would consider run-of-the-mill mainstream fiction in 2017. Enter Dwight Brooks and Salvage Optic, stage left. Here’s a novel to delight and confound your expectations, what with its embrasure of archaic diction (a la the Royal Society, circa 1674) and its ferocious, beautifully-plotted character arcs. Did we mention there are pirates? Our bad. There are LOTS of pirates. And that’s fantastic, really. This is a book packed with swash, buckle, and literary Easter eggs which will keep the discerning reader busy in front of a crackling fire this Fall. Really, you couldn’t ask for a stranger–or more appealing–hybrid of a book!

No list of new releases is complete without a seriously awesome picture book! Bertyl, by Sandra Dobozi, fits the bill perfectly. This sweetly rhyming book follows the adventures (not to be confused with the piratey adventures of Salvage Optic) of a turtle looking to nail down answers to some of life’s tough questions: Who am I? What am I here for? Why am I not like other turtles? (Seriously, we can relate.) Fans of R.J. Palacio’s Wonder and its picture book counterpart, We’re All Wonders) will appreciate Dobozi’s take on what it feels like to be “different,” and to want to know one’s place in the world. This is the uplifting, positive, inspiring kid’s book we all need to read in the doldrums of 2017.


spa-news

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry.This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog every Monday to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

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Self-Publishing Week in Review: 3/11/14

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry. This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog every Tuesday to find out the hottest news.

8 Lessons I’ve Learned By Self-Publishing 3 Kindle E-books

This self-publishing author shares her publishing experience. In hopes of helping other writers avoid costly mistakes, she discusses the mistakes she made early in her career. The article covers many aspects of the self-publishing process, including cover design, price, and more. This is an excellent read for anyone considering self-publishing.

10 Reasons Self Published Authors Will Capture 50 Percent of the Ebook Market by 2020

Mark Coker, the founder of Smashwords, estimates self-publishing authors will capture 50 percent of the market by 2020. In this article, he offers 10 great reasons why. This is an encouraging read for anyone considering self-publishing.

The Key to Self-Publishing Your Memoir: Be Confident with Your Story!

Memoirist Dorit Sasson talks about the importance of being a confident author when self-publishing a memoir. She also discusses the importance of building an online presence and offers tips on gaining an audience. This is a must read for memoir writers.

If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

ABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at blog.outskirtspress.com, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog at http://kellyschuknecht.com.

Friday Conversations With A Self-Publishing Writer 1/24/14

WARNING!!!

Two days ago I received a phone call from a former client—a memoir author who created one of the most heartwarming memoirs I’ve helped place in manuscript form.  He was very excited to tell me about a “great opportunity” he’d found in one of his favorite magazines; the “opportunity” to submit his “unpublished” memoir and WIN “big bucks,” PLUS have his work published by a major publishing house!  WOW, indeed!

My dear friend is not what he calls “handy with a computer,” so he asked me to look into the details and “rules of submission.”  That I did and I was shocked by what I read—shocked, angered, and very disappointed in the enterprises (magazine/publisher) that I considered to be among the best-of-the-best.  Imbedded in the “rules” was this statement:

“Submission of an Initial Entry grants sponsors and their agents the unconditional, irrevocable, perpetual, worldwide right to publish, use, adapt, edit and/or modify such entry in any way, in any and all media, without limitation, and without consideration to the entrant, whether or not such entry is selected as a winning entry.”

Now I am concerned for my other clients (yes, I’ve contacted them) and all the folks out there who will read the first portions of the “rules,” follow the submission requirements, and LOSE ALL THE RIGHTS to their own stories simply by sending in an “entry.”  Bottom-line, I believe these publishing entities are on-the-hunt for excellent true stories (memoirs) that can be turned into “best sellers” by their writers—for their profit—and “without consideration” to the authors, the people who have lived those events.

SO IT IS that I offer a few pointers to those who enjoy entering writing contests:

  • READ EVERY WORD of the rules—whether titled Contest Rules or Submission Rules.  If there is ANY HINT of giving up ANY of your author rights, DO NOT SUBMIT ANYTHING to that contest.
  • Yes, there are writing contests that are reputable.  DO your homework and research the contests by contest name, sponsors, and previous “reviews” and/or comments.
  • There are many reasons for entering a writing contest.  What is yours?  Are you looking for an award that will enhance your writing resume or look good on the cover of your book?  Do you think “winning” will finally get your book published?  These can happen.  But, again, be aware of the cost to you—the time spent and emotional investment.
  • Finally, watch out for sales pitches—from associated contacts—that start coming your way.  Too many “contests” out there are simply fronts for finding potential customers in the writing software/hardware and publishing markets.

How am I counseling my memoir client?  After sending him a copy of ALL the rules and statements associated with that “contest”—and my warning NOT to submit his memoir to them—I sent him my review of a reputable self-publishing house where he WILL RETAIN ALL of his author rights.  He had not wanted to “publish” his memoir prior to seeing the advertisement for this contest.  However, several acquaintances who have read the manuscript have encouraged him to “get this story into the hands of more people.”  I hope he does.  It is a wonderful love and life story.

Royalene ABOUT ROYALENE DOYLE: Royalene Doyle is a Ghostwriter with Outskirts Press, bringing more than 35 years of writing experience to authors who need “just a little assistance” with completing their writing projects. She has worked with both experienced and fledgling writers helping complete projects in multiple genres. When a writer brings the passion they have for their work and combines it with Royalene’s passion to see the finished project in print, books are published and the writer’s legacy is passed forward.

Self-Publishing Week in Review: 12/31/13

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry. This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog every Tuesday to find out the hottest news.

B.I.G. Discusses Power and Perils of Self-Publishing

B.I.G. women’s networking group hosted a panel discussion on the ins and outs of book publishing. In this video, four women discuss their self-publishing experiences.

Five Mistakes KILLING Self-Published Authors

This writer offers great advice that will help self-publishing authors avoid ruining their book and reputation. She offers tips on when to publish, how to market, and more. This is a must read.

Self-publishing was way easier than I thought it would be

Nathan Bransford, author of How to Write a Novel: 47 Rules for Writing A Stupendously Awesome Novel That You Will Love Forever, talks about self-publishing his book and his success so far. He also shares advice for other writers considering self-publishing.

If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

ABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at blog.outskirtspress.com, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog at http://kellyschuknecht.com.

Self-Publishing Week in Review: 12/24/13

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry. This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog every Tuesday to find out the hottest news.

Obama’s Brother Is Self-Publishing an Autobiography to Set the Record Straight

Obama’s half brother Mark Obama Ndesandjo is self-publishing an autobiography detailing the abuse his mother suffered at the hands of their father. The book, Cultures: My Odyssey of Self-Discovery, will discuss Mark’s relationship with his brother as well as address supposed inaccuracies in the president’s own memoir.

My Long Road To Self-Publishing

John Biggs shares his publishing journey, which includes both traditional and self-publishing. He also discusses why crowdfunding is a viable alternative to traditional models.

Writing Memoirs: Telling The Ugly Truth in a Beautiful Way

This is a great article for memoir writers, even if they don’t plan to self-publish. The author talks about the process and  challenge of writing a readable, uplifting non-fiction book that deals with difficult facts. This is an inspiring article for memoir writers.

If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

ABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at blog.outskirtspress.com, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog at http://kellyschuknecht.com.

Self-Publishing Week in Review: 12/17/13

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry. This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog every Tuesday to find out the hottest news.

5 Lessons From a Proud Self-Published Author

One of the best ways to improve your chance of success as a self-published author is learning from the mistakes and triumphs of other self-published authors. In this article, self-published author Jessica Smock shares five lessons that will help you improve your book. Every writer should read her advice.

10 Tips For Self-Publishing A Multi-Contributor Anthology

If you are planning to self-publish a multi-contributor anthology, this is a must read. The author shares 10 tips that will help the project go smoothly and make working with writers easier.

Self-published Seattle Author Tops Amazon Book Category List for Memoirs During Prime Holiday Shopping Season

Being on top of one of Amazon’s book lists is always a huge accomplishment, but to do it during the prime holiday shopping season is even more astounding. This article shares the success story of self-published memoir author  Molly McCord, who reached #2 on Amazon’s Memoirs: Adventurers and Explorers category.

If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

ABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at blog.outskirtspress.com, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog at http://kellyschuknecht.com.