Wednesday, November 02, 2016

The Insecure Writer's Support Group - Mâtowak: Woman Who Cries and CassaSeries

It’s time for another edition of The Insecure Writer’s Support Group, founded by Ninja Captain, Alex J. Cavanaugh.

For those who are enjoying the prompt, November's question is: What is your favorite aspect of being a writer?

What goes into producing a book?

Recently I saw a self-published author, Sandra Almazan, post a list of what it takes for her to produce a book. You can read it HERE.

Now as a publisher, I’d like to add a few more layers to that list. At least twenty. Maybe more.

Can you make it as a self-published author? Yes. It’s just you, though. No, you won’t make a fortune. You’ll work your ass off. But everything you make will be yours.

What more could a publisher offer? Got an hour or so?

Formatting - professional, print and eBook, bar code, ISBN, CIP block
Cover art - professional, marketable
Professional editing
Review copies - both print and eBook; to pre-publication reviewers, periodicals, book bloggers, authors for blurbs, media, etc.
Marketing - large database, connections, experience, giveaways, funds, etc.
Extra - audio books, merchandise, foreign rights, etc.
All of the above - paid, researched, contacted, created, and risked by publisher

It’s a huge task.

But my team and I do it every day. I suppose it's now my favorite thing about writing. Because the results are amazing:

Mâtowak: Woman Who Cries

The follow-up to Broken But Not Dead, an IPPY Award Silver Medalist

A murder enveloped in pain and mystery...

When Canada's retired Minister of National Defense, Leland Warner, is murdered in his home, the case is handed to Corporal Danny Killian, an aboriginal man tortured by his wife's unsolved murder.

The suspect, 60-year-old Sally Warner, still grieves for the loss of her two sons, dead in a suicide/murder eighteen months earlier. Confused and damaged, she sees in Corporal Killian a friend sympathetic to her grief and suffering and wants more than anything to trust him.

Danny finds himself with a difficult choice—indict his prime suspect, the dead minister's horribly abused wife or find a way to protect her and risk demotion. Or worse, transfer away from the scene of his wife’s murder and the guilt that haunts him...

“From its gripping beginning to its thrilling end, Matowak: Woman Who Cries delivers a fast-paced ride in this skillfully-written mystery from Joylene Nowell Butler.” - Mystery writer Elizabeth S. Craig

“A psychological puzzle unfolding from two very different points of excellent whodunnit for the thinking reader.” - Patricia Stoltey, author

“…as complex in its plot as it is in its character development.” – Stuart Aken, author

Release date - November 1, 2016
$18.95 USA, 6x9 trade paperback, 312 pages
Thriller/Psychological (FIC031080) and Mystery (FIC022020)
Print ISBN 9781939844231, eBook ISBN 9781939844248
$4.99 eBook available in all formats

Joylene, Métis, is the author of Dead Witness, Broken But Not Dead, and Break Time. She and her husband and their two cats reside in Canada for the summers and Nayarit for the winters. They believe life should be an adventure.

Follow her blog tour for reviews, excerpts, interviews, guest posts, and your chance to win a copy of Mâtowak: Woman Who Cries.

Now an audio book:

CassaSeries by Alex J. Cavnaugh

The best-selling Cassa Trilogy
CassaStar - Will Byron’s skills be enough as he and Bassa embark on a mission destined to stretch their abilities to the limit?
CassaFire - Tensions mount as Byron deals with a fiesty woman pilot, an overeager young scientist, and potentially deadly weapon.
CassaStorm - Byron is caught between a galaxy-wide war, a strange alien transmission, and his son’s nightmares.

“…calls to mind the youthful focus of Robert Heinlein’s early military sf, as well as the excitement of space opera epitomized by the many Star Wars novels. Fast-paced military action and a youthful protagonist make this a good choice for both young adult and adult fans of space wars.” - Library Journal


  1. Great book and cover! And congrats to Alex, too!

    Publishers have a ton of work to do...and assume all risk. A never-ending list!

  2. Great book by Joylene, Congrats must also go to Alex on his great achievements as a writer of an excellent seris of books.

  3. From a reader's viewpoint, we sometimes forget all the hard work and long hours that goes into producing our favorite books. Congratulations to Joylene on her release and to Alex on his series on audio. Loved the first two stories in the series and I'm loving the third too.

    Thoughts in Progress
    and MC Book Tours

  4. Congrats to Joylene! Love her cover. And yes, there's a lot of work to getting a book published. I admire authors who self-publish but I'd rather have the expertise of a publisher like you to do some of these tasks.

  5. There are pros and cons whether we go it alone or get a publisher, so we each have to decide which suits us best. It's great that there are different options to try.

  6. Hi Diane - good to see the link across to Sandra's post on self-publishing. Also congratulations on helping Joylene get her wonderfully title and looking good book out ... I still have to read Broken but not Dead .. I will do soon. Then Alex with his series ... way to go ... cheers to you all - Hilary

  7. It definitely takes a lot of work to put a book out into the world. Congratulations to Joylene on the new release!

  8. Diane, I think what you do to help authors is so inspiring.

  9. I've definitely decided I don't have time to self-publish... way too many things to become expert in. If I didn't have a day job, maybe. As it is, time is better invested in making sure the writing is right. Though I should probably invest some time in reaching out to agents and publishers...

  10. Formatting freaks me out! Any publisher does a lot but none more than you!

  11. That's a lot.
    Congratulations to Joylene and so excited about my latest audio book!

  12. Congrats to Joylene and Alex! It does take a lot of work to put a book into the world. You do awesome work!

  13. Mason, I'm thrilled to hear that.

    Natalie, there is more than most realize.

    Patsy that's a good thing.

    Thank you, Karen.

    Hart - LOL.

    Lexa, thank you. Once I figured out formatting, I loved it.

    Alex, it's already selling.

    Thank you, Christine.

  14. WOW - What a fabulous cover!!! Definitely, a lot of work and care goes into publishing a book. Great post!

  15. You do it right, Diane! I love my current publisher, but they are lighter with their marketing. Sure, they try to get reviews by using Manic Readers, but that's it. I'm the one who has to send to pre-publication reviewers. The problem is I never have enough time. My publisher gives me copies about 1-2 months in advance, not the 3-4 that these reviewers want. My publisher also doesn't help with giveaways, merchandise, or other such marketing. I'm on my own with that.

  16. I do prefer a publisher to self-publishing. When done right it is awesome. :-)

    Anna from elements of emaginette

  17. I've self-published, so I know how hard it is to cover all the bases. Exhausting. I've always had a publisher that was less than helpful. You and your team are astounding, Diane. Trust me!

  18. My first release (December 6!) is with a traditional pub. I wanted the experience of a professional editor, cover design, and the publisher's platform. I'm open to and eager to try out an indie project knowing everything that goes into making a book. There are so many resources and options for authors now. I want to do it all :)

    Here's my IWSG post for November: YA Author Stephanie Scott

  19. Good insight into all of the work that publishers do behind the scenes. Congrats to Joylene on her release and to Alex on having all of his books on audio.

  20. Diane, I don't know much about what goes on behind-the-scenes, but I know that you are certainly a professional of the highest order. Authors who are part of your stable are extremely fortunate to have you in their corner.
    I love the cover of Joylene's's captivating!
    Happy IWSG Day!

  21. I'm sure you earn every penny. It has to be a huge job and a big responsibility when you're putting together a project for a writer. Love the books I've seen you publish.

  22. What you've done for me has be awesome! What you do for those you publish, well, you must take a lot of the *worry* out of the experience.

  23. I'm definitely happy I started out in publishing with small publishers - I would've been completely lost trying to do it all on my own.

    Joylene's new book sounds amazing!

  24. Congrats to Alex. Publishers do have their work cut out for them, though I do grumble at the amount of time they take to publish a book.

  25. All the work that goes into publication... It's insanity. I often wonder how publishers make it work from a financial perspective.

  26. Yes, publishers do give a lot in terms of time, energy and the financial input. The result is awesome though!

  27. A great post. Such a lot of work goes into publishing and it seems that your authors are very grateful for all your hard work and dedication, Diane. Congrats to Joylene and Alex.

  28. Congratulations to Alex. Joylene's book sounds fascinating. Thanks for reminding us about the important role publishers play.

  29. Loren, thank you. I will let my illustrator know.

    Chrys, maybe I'm doing too much? LOL

    Joylene, wonderful!

    Michelle, thank you so much.

    Lee, the ones I don't pay my authors. LOL

    Bish, I try.

    Rachna, we try to do it in less than a year.

    Crystal, now you know why they do so little marketing.

  30. Congrats to both your clients Joylene and Alex! Very exciting time for them.

    It is hard work to self-publish, especially when you are just starting out and trying to learn everything. It maybe a quicker process in that your book gets out there as soon as you hit that publish button, but it certainly isn't easier. So much to know and learn and just trying to find the answers online can be a daunting task since there is so much out there.

  31. Congrats to Joylene!
    And, way to go as a publisher, Diane!

  32. Your list is exactly why I chose to work with a publisher rather than do it all myself. There's enough for me to do and any sharing of the work is appreciated.

  33. Good post, Diane. My thoughts are that you go a lot farther in marketing your authors that many small press do. And you always do it in a professional manner. Kudos.
    Oh FYI, on my post today, my wording could have been better on the section about the 'I received a free copy in return for an honest review.' I don''t believe that's Amazon, but my understanding is it's a legal requirement, because it's free.

  34. The more I think about it, the more I think I should sign with a smaller publisher instead of trying to do it all myself. Sounds like a big investment of time to go it alone.

  35. Many congrats to Joylene and to Alex on his audio book - how cool is that?

    You really do work hard for your authors, Diane, and it shows.

  36. I love writing so much. But all the stuff involved with publishing is so intimidating! I'm amazed that people like you can do it for a living. You must have nerves of steel.

  37. It's got to be really satisfying to get these excellent authors out there with such a great reaction. Congrats to both! And to you, too!

  38. All kinds of awesomeness! YAY!

  39. Yes, I'm a big advocate of having a publisher! There is no way I could have done all of this on my own. I feel like I'm drowning with all of the things that are on my end of this, and I can't imagine doing all of that other stuff!

    Congrats to Alex and Joylene!

  40. A lot of work goes into publishing a book. I know because, as a self-published author, I do it all. Or pay someone to do it (cover art & editing). Great cover for Joylene's book and congrats to Alex for the audio book.

  41. So much goes into putting a book out there for folks to read, yet it all looks so simple when you're on the outside.

  42. Publishers make everything so much easier!! And save so much time! So many benefits.
    Another congrats to Alex and Joylene.

  43. I've been seeing Joylene's book everywhere. Good job! I've always self-published, but it's nice knowing there are other viable options.

  44. Joylene is everywhere best wishes to her she sure has a busy tour schedule.

  45. Publishing is such a noble profession.

  46. Publishing is definitely a noble profession. I've seen Joylene's mystery book in my visits for IWSG. It sounds intriguing. So, I might add, is Alex's. All the best with the new releases. This is my first time at your blog. I'm meeting and connecting with so many wonderful writers on IWSG. I've joined your blog!

  47. Diane, you are trooper, no question. Congrats on all you achieved and those who you helped. Also congrats to Joylene and Alex.

  48. Jolene's books sounds intriguing. Lots of drama; and hopefully plenty of intrigue and action.

    Congrats to Alex on his audio book series.

    I'd never make it as a self published author; for all the reasons you list and the 20 or more you did not. I'd be begging Lemur or Fox Press if I did not use so much colorful language, sexual content and violence.

  49. Wow! That cover of Joylene's is beyond amazing. Yes, so much to do in the publishing world, L Diane. It's good seeing the books coming out. :-)

  50. Meka, there is so much to learn.

    Thank you, Tyrean.

    Thank you, Sandra. I did know book bloggers needed to state that on their site.

    JE, either that or I am crazy.

    Victoria, welcome!

    Donna, if you ever write a clean read, let me know.

    Denise, thank you, I'll let the illustrator know.

  51. I'll be reading Matowak someday. Gonna see if I win it first. :)

    Congrats on Bloodwalker. That was an amazing read. It's great you enjoy your work.


  53. Congrats to Joylene and Alex!

    Publishing is a dang lot of work.

  54. I appreciate everything you do for your authors, Diane. Where you find the time is amazing.
    Congratulations to Joylene on her latest and to Alex with the Audio books.

  55. Hi, L. Diane.....

    You are such a busy woman... HOW do YOU DO IT!.... Congrats to Jolene and to Alex as well~ Looks like you're getting some amazing manuscripts!

    Looking forward to submitting something to you at some point. UGH. If I could just settle into a place that makes my creatively happy!

  56. Great post! You do so much, and this is a good reminder of how important publishers are. Congratulations to Joylene and Alex!

  57. Congrats to Joylene and Alex!

  58. Congrats to Joylene and Yay for Alex! So excited for both of them and I am wishing both of them the best of luck! :)

    Hoping you are having a great week and getting lots done!

  59. Well, self-pubbed authors can do a lot of that too by hiring it out or learning the skills, although the reviews are harder to come by for certain publications. Sadly, not all publishers do those things. You've done excellent work with Dancing Lemur Press!

    Congrats to Joylene!