Please welcome the now published author, NANCY S. THOMPSON!
Thanks, Livia, for having me over today.
If you’re a writer seeking publication, you’ve likely heard that you should “build a platform.” I didn’t know what that meant two years ago when I wrote a book out of the blue and started researching what it took to get published. In a nutshell, it means that, as an author, you need to have a voice, a way in which to make yourself heard and, more importantly, get noticed. Most often, this means having a blog or website where you can share your wisdom or experiences. This platform is a way to connect, mostly with other writers, but also with publishers and literary agents and anyone else who might have a hand in the industry.
I found building my platform—my blog—to be a major chore and a challenge. It’s labor intensive and was very slow-going at first. But, day by day, I made more and more connections and built a solid following, at least for someone who wasn’t yet published. It was these very connections that helped me get published. When I found a blog I liked or thought useful, I followed and began commenting. The blogger, in turn, usually reciprocated, as is the custom, except sometimes with rookie bloggers who often don’t understand the “rules.” Soon, many of those connections became friendships. Some turned into partnerships as we exchanged manuscripts and critiqued each others’ work.
I entered as many blogfests and contests as I could. Those are usually a great resource for new followers. Hopping from blog to blog, I would hear about so-and-so just landing an agent, or you-know-who finally scoring a book deal. That gave me hope that I, too, might find some measure of success someday, after I had paid my dues, of course.
But more than that, these connections, this network of writers and authors, both aspiring and published, gave me advice on invaluable resources that would improve my craft, help write a query, advise me on finding the appropriate agent, or research which publishers accept submissions without representation. And best of all, they assisted in making my novel all it could be. My critique partners pulled things out of me I never even knew existed. They enriched my book beyond mere words.
Some writers think, since writing is a solitary profession, that they can go it alone. But I’m telling you, you shouldn’t. I have more friends now—people who understand my desire to write, my obsession with characters, other worlds, quirky mannerisms, and gaping plot holes—than I ever had before. And whereas most professionals are determinedly competitive, it’s not unusual for writers to refer their associates back to their own agent or publisher, giving them a foot in the door and a leg up in the decidedly depressing circle of hell that is getting published.
Without my blogging, I wouldn’t have found my critique partners. I wouldn’t have learned the ropes and honed my craft. I wouldn’t have had the insight I received from querying my friends’ agents. I wouldn’t have known how to write a query, let alone polish one. I wouldn’t have understood how the publishing business is changing at an alarming rate. I wouldn’t have found my publisher and therefore wouldn’t have signed a deal, which means my friends who followed right after me might not have penned their own deals.
Sure, I wrote a book. But being an author is so much more than just reaching a word count. We writers in this blogosphere are a real community, supportive of each other in the good times and bad. We pick each other up after every rejection, and, after a gentle shoulder-shaking, send each other back out into the big, bad world that is publishing. I am where I am because of my experience with blogging, with building my platform. So take it seriously and devote a good amount of attention to it. You never know when you’re going to make that one connection that will change your whole world.
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Obsessed with revenge following the violent death of his pregnant wife, Tyler Karras pledges the woman responsible to sex-traffickers in San Francisco’s Russian Mafia. In exchange, they’ll finally let his brother leave the business for good—with his debt wiped clean and his heart still beating. But when Tyler mistakenly targets the wrong woman, he’s forced to protect her from the very enemy he's unleashed, and the Russians are holding Nick as leverage to force Ty to complete their deal. Caught in a no-win situation, Ty must find a way to save himself, his brother, and the woman, but with the Russian Mafia, even two out of three makes for very long odds.
Early praise for The Mistaken
“A deliciously slow burn that builds to a ferocious crescendo, Nancy S. Thompson's THE MISTAKEN kept me riveted until the very last page. Tyler Karras is a complex and flawed protagonist, and his redemptive journey makes him the perfect anti-hero. This psychological suspense is a standout, and I can't wait for Thompson's next book.” ~Jennifer Hillier, author of CREEP and FREAK
“Nancy S. Thompson's debut novel, The Mistaken, is a first-rate thriller full of hair-raising twists and turns. Pursued by the police and the Russian mafia in San Francisco, brothers Tyler and Nick Karras are fascinating, fully-drawn, desperate characters. The action is non-stop. Thompson's taut, intriguing tale of revenge, mistaken identity, kidnapping and murder will keep you enthralled and entertained.” ~Kevin O’Brien, New York Times Bestselling Author of DISTURBED and TERRIFIED
“Fast-paced and emotionally gripping - once the ride begins, you won't stop reading until it ends." ~Alex J. Cavanaugh, author of CASSAFIRE and CASSASTAR
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