This month’s interview is a little different. You see, Alessandra Torre began her career as a self published author and became a New York Times bestselling author. The publishers then came calling and she did traditionally publish but despite getting what most writers dream about, she continues to self publish as well as publish traditionally. On top of this, some of her books are being turned into movies! Not bad for someone who once said she never saw herself as a write before she wrote her first novel. Let me introduce you to, Alessandra Torre.
1) Tell us a little about yourself
Hmmm… I’m a homebody. I am married to a ridiculously typical alpha male, we have three misbehaving dogs, and entirely too many books. I love to ride horses, take naps, and read. I started writing four years ago, and it changed my life in so many wonderful ways.
2) What is your writing style, what do you like to write?
I don’t know how to describe my writing style, except to say that it is always described as ‘unique’. I think that’s probably due to the fact that I am not trained in writing. My only training was a lifetime of incessant reading. I learned what I enjoy in a book, and the things that I hate. I think my style developed as a blend of hundreds of other writers. As far as what I like to write, that often varies. We had a tough year last year, and I wrote a contemporary romance as a way to escape the hard things we were dealing with. There are times when I’m compelled, like right now, to write darker fiction. It all just sort of depends on my mood and what plots are really pushing on my brain.
3) Why did you self-publish?
Originally I self-published because it was my only real option. I didn’t have the confidence in my writing to go through the traditional query process, and I didn’t feel any desire to be traditionally published. I saw an easy way to put my first book online, and I took it. If it wasn’t for self-publishing, I strongly believe that I would never have started to write novels, and I certainly wouldn’t have had any published. The idea of sending out 10-20 copies and waiting on rejections… I just didn’t have the confidence to go through that process.
4) You have been traditionally published yet continue to self-publish as well, why?
The pros and cons of self-publishing versus traditional publishing is one that I weigh with each and every book. My erotic romances — I can pub those myself at a lower price point and make more than I can if I traditionally pub–plus I can maintain all of the control. In that market, I have a loyal readership, and don’t need the marketing push of a publisher. In that market, it doesn’t make sense for me to give the majority of the sales revenue to a publisher. In other markets — such as the suspense or contemporary fiction market — I need the publisher presence. In those books, it often does make sense to go the traditional route–both financially, and for the best success of the novel.
5) Do you prefer one type of publishing over the other?
I prefer self-publishing. Both for long-term financial reasons, and because I’m a bit of a control freak. 🙂
6) What were the advantages of being traditionally published over self-publishing?
Traditional publishing can open more doors than self-publishing. It’s often easier to get foreign print deals if you are traditionally published. The same with film deals. There are certain trade publications that won’t consider self-published works. Also, bookstores are often resistant to stocking self-dubbed titles, though that is beginning to get easier as my brand and audience grows.
7) What are the best and worst parts of self-publishing?
The best: Total control over my pricing, promotion, and presentation
The worst: The workload and the out-of-pocket expenses involved in the development of the novel.
8) What are you currently working on?
The Ghostwriter. It is a contemporary fiction novel about a famous novelist who hires a ghostwriter to complete her final book.
9) What advice have you got for people who may be thinking of self-publishing?
GO FOR IT. I am a huge advocate of self-publishing. I have a lot of helpful articles on my website, and the indie community is a huge source of support and information. One big piece of advice — invest in your novel. Get a great editor (I have two!) and a great proofreader (I have two!). Pay for proper formatting, and for an eye-catching, professional cover. Your book won’t succeed if it isn’t properly presented.
10) Book or eBook?
I prefer book, but 95% of what I read is ebook, just out of pure convenience.
11) If you held a dinner party, which literary characters would you invite and why?
Every one of my characters. And then I’d grill them over what they hated about their roles.
1) What was the last book you read? The Bourbon Kings by JR Ward.
2) Who is your favourite author? Gillian Flynn
3) What can’t you leave home without? pen and paper
4) What was the last song you heard? some cuban love song
5) What is your favourite word? (Can be in English or another language) biscuit (it’s my husband’s nickname for me)
For more from Alessandra you can find her at the following:
Instagram: Alessandra Torre4