For the first Author Interview of 2020, it gives me great pleasure to introduce you to one of my fellow Jersey Writers Social Group members, Dreena Collins. In September last year, Dreena entertained a packed Maria Richie Room at the Jersey Arts Centre, during the 2019 Jersey Festival of Words captivating us all with her engaging wit, and her passion for creative writing.
During 2019, Dreena self-published three volumes of her excellent short stories and flash fiction, The Blue Hour, The Day I Nearly Drowned and, most recently Bird Wing. The Amazon reviews alone are glowing.
Thanks to the wonders of the Internet, I very recently ‘met’ the Canadian author, Gila Green, who is based in Israel. Since then, I’ve got to know her a little better, as she kindly agreed to be interviewed.
To date, Gila has written four novels, and her work has been shortlisted for many awards, which is no surprise. Her books focus on everyday people tackling immigration, racism, alienation, war, politics, romance, poverty, terrorism, and surviving. After I read those words, I was instantly drawn.
Gila was a joy to interview, honest, funny and an example to us all in terms of her gutsy determination to see her work in print. She finishes up the interview with a few of her top tips for us aspiring writers.
Without an agent, your labour of love, AKA your novel, isn’t going anywhere and, with each rejection, you are engulfed by an overwhelming urge to self-publish. A few of your friends, as well as people you have never met, have read it and given you favourable feedback, but if your MS isn’t attracting an agent, then maybe you should think twice as to whether your labour of love is worthy of self-publication.
Over a million authors self-published during 2017, so there is plenty of competition out there. But, before you chuck your manuscript in the bin, be buoyed up by this…
Stephen King’s first big novel, Carrie, was rejected 30 times. He tossed it in the wastebasket but his wife fished it out. He earned $39 million in 2012.
I am impatient, true to my birth sign, Aries, but my dotage years are too close for comfort, so I need to get on and resolve my dilemma. Cultivating patience and continue to try and find an agent to work with, or give way to my impatience and join the ever-swelling ranks of the self-published?