Sunday, March 29, 2009

Author Spotlight: J.A. Konrath

J.A. Konrath ain’t Southern. Neither is his alter ego, Jack Kilborn. Konrath does, however, write a thriller series featuring a female police homicide lieutenant with the very Southern name of Jack Daniels. All of the books in the series are named after drinks that are made with Jack Daniels: Rusty Nail, Bloody Mary, Cherry Bomb, Dirty Martini and Fuzzy Navel,

Recently he’s branched off to write a horror novel called Afraid under the pen name Jack Kilborn. The excerpt is so scary you’ll be hollering for your mama.

Joe Konrath is also master at self promotion. His blog, A Newbie's Guide to Publishing, is a must-read for authors who want to make a lot of noise. He’s also written a free e-book for writers that’s invaluable.

Here’s a little Q and A with Joe/Jack:

Q. What is the elevator pitch for your latest novel?

A. You know, my father was an elevator operator, one of the last in Chicago.The job had its share of ups and downs. He hated it, because people really used to push his buttons. Finally, one day he got the shaft.But seriously, my book, Afraid, is coming out March 31. It's written under my pen name, Jack Kilborn, and is the most frightening book of all time. In fact, it's probably too scary, and I really can't recommend anyone read it.

Q. Why did you decide to depart from the Jack Daniels series?

A. The sixth Jack book, Cherry Bomb, comes out on July. I haven't departed, exactly. It's more like I'm taking a break to do other things for a bit.

Q. You're known in the writing world for your extensive promotion efforts. Did you have a background in marketing? What made you become such a heavy promoter right out of the gate?

A. I don't have a marketing background, though I've been asked that many times. I just use common sense, and try to do things that work on me. I think about what makes me buy books, and use those techniques.The reason I'm so into self-promotion is because it took me a long time to get published, and I vowed that if I ever got into print, I'd do everything I could to stay in print.

Q. You once visited 500 bookstores to promote your latest release. Would you do it again? Why or why not?

A. I'd do it again, if a publisher sponsored me. It's a lot of hard work, but worth it.

Q. How do you balance promotion time with writing time? Any tips?

A. Sleep is overrated.

Q. What's your number one promotion tip?

A. You have to be relentless and open-minded at the same time. Set goals, then try to figure out why you did or didn't reach those goals. Then adjust accordingly.


jane, candid said...

I love this blog, ladies! Very entertaining stories. I'll be back to read more past (and future) posts.

Go, Joe, go. Almost there!

Karen from Mentor said...

I want to give a shout out to Carolyn Haines, I love the "Bones" series and own them all. If you ever retire it, I want Jitty to come live with me. :)

Thanks for having Joe here today.
I've really been enjoying the tour.
Karen Schindler:)

Marilyn Brant said...

I've been following Joe's blog tour, and I was delighted to see this post on yours, Karin! Thanks for the fun author spotlight :).