My guest today is Gayle Trent. Her mystery novel Between a Clutch and a Hard Place has just been released In audio from Always Keepers Press. I shared the exciting news about this new audio publisher last week.
Lillie: Thank you for visiting A Writer’s Words, An Editor’s Eye today, Gayle. Tell us about Between a Clutch and a Hard Place.
Gayle: In Between A Clutch and A Hard Place, Myrtle Crumb buys a purse from a consignment shop and finds a note inside. The note leads her to believe something bad might’ve happened to the purse’s previous owner, so she investigates.
Lillie: I always like to know the story behind the story. Where did you get the idea for the book?
Gayle: I’d never written in first person until I did a story for Belle Books which was accepted for Blessings of Mossy Creek. I found I really enjoyed that. Plus, my grandmother had died about a year prior; and I think there is a lot of Myrtle’s personality in keeping with hers. I think, in a way, Between A Clutch and A Hard Place was part of my grieving process…a way to keep her close.
Lillie: Why did you decide to publish your story in audio with Always Keepers Press? How does it feel to be the author of the first audiobook released by the company?
Gayle: I always enjoy audio books, especially when I’m traveling, so I was thrilled at the prospect of one of my books being made into an audio book. Plus, after the publisher sent me a sample of the reading, I was really hooked!
Lillie: What are your thoughts about different kinds of publishing, such as self-publishing, small press, large traditional publishers? Do you think one is better than the others or do you think different publishers are appropriate for different books?
Gayle: Gee, I think I’ve done all of that! (laughs) All the various publishing methods have their pros and cons. With smaller houses, you have a shorter turnaround time and more personalized attention; with self-publishing, you have total creative control but a considerable investment of your own money; and with traditional publishing, your books are available in more venues. I think all have their benefits as well as their drawbacks. For example, with self-publishing I learned so much about marketing. I’m still able to draw on that knowledge to market my current titles.
Lillie: For many authors, promotion is the hardest part of writing. How do you promote your books?
Gayle: I’m finding new venues all the time. My agent suggested I get more involved in social media. I was already on Twitter; but after talking wtih him, I got involved in Facebook and MySpace. I’ll warn you those can be major time-wasters and they take discipline I sometimes don’t have (it’s more fun to chat than work, you know), but I hope to see an increase in my web traffic. And speaking of web traffic, a well-designed, professional website is the best investment an author can make. Besides those things, I think blog tours are terrific.
Lillie: You’re active as a speaker, teacher, and coach for writers. Tell us a little about that.
Gayle: When I have a speaking engagement–especially at a school–it’s like having a day off from “real” work. I love talking with people and helping them make their own dreams come true.
Lillie: Where can readers learn more about you and your books?
Gayle: Please visit me at GayleTrent.com.
Lillie: Is there anything else you’d like to share that I haven’t asked?
Gayle: Visit me at FreshFiction, where you can enter a different contest for my books (and sometimes additional goodies like a sterling silver locket during the month of February) each month!
Lillie: Thank you for visiting. I’m sure I didn’t ask everything my readers want to know so I hope you’ll check in during the day to answer questions.
Gayle: Thank you for having me, and I certainly will be popping in and out during the course of the day.
Gayle lives in Southwest Virginia with her husband and two beautiful children, a boy and a girl. She’s a full-time writer/editor/mom/wife and chief cook and bottle washer, and loves every minute of it. Okay, not the bottle washing so much, but the rest of it is great.