Where Writers And Authors Meet Interviews:
Mandi M. Lynch!
Mandi Lynch was our Featured Spotlight author last week and visitors were encouraged to ask Mandi some of their own questions! Here is a link to that Spotlight! Feel free to ask more questions, and we might just be able to get Mandi back for a follow up interview!
1. What are the 3 most important lessons you’ve learnt about the writing industry since your career began? (Asked by: Jo Linsdell)
– You never know as much as you think you know.
– You should always be learning.
– Whatever you thought you knew is already obsolete, so go learn something else.
Seriously, the writing industry is a fickle thing. Learn everything you can and never stop. What you know today won’t be what works tomorrow, and as new technologies and outlets are released, that learning curve gets steeper. Don’t fall behind.
2. How has it been to run a small press these days? Any advice in how to choose a good one? (Asked by: Jennifer Eifrig)
Challenging? One thing I’ve learned is that there are a million small details and every time I think I’m just about done, fifty of them are out of whack. What should take ten minutes (in my head at least) often takes a couple hours to fix.
As for choosing one, due diligence. Research it, talk to the people that are already published there, etc. Read the contract. READ THE CONTRACT. A good one will never charge YOU for anything. In fact, just a couple days ago I was talking to a friend who refused a contract because they wanted to pay her very little money and also charge her for things like publicity copies for book reviewers and made her do her own PR. The point of picking a publisher vs doing it yourself is that they’re supposed to do those things for you. Another thing – if they don’t seem to have a good web presence, you don’t want them. If you can’t find them, how could anyone find your book?
3. Indie publishing is a big.challenge. What do feel are the most important things an author needs to focus on to keep the buzz on (ie. social media wise, local area…ect)(Asked by: Cabin Goddess)
You have to be talked about and seen. If you don’t want a buzz, then publish wherever and be done with it. But if you want the buzz, you need the business cards and bookmarks and to go to cons and sign your books and do readings and… it’s like having a second (or third) job in addition to the writing if you want to do it well. But trust me, if you’re reading this for tips, you’re a long way from being Neil Gaiman where they seek you out just because your writing proceeds you. He started somewhere, you have too.
Also, I know this sounds obvious, but it’s not always so simple in practice. KEEP WRITING. It’s easy to get caught up in editing/researching/publicity/etc, but if you’re not giving PRODUCT, then what are you doing? And a quality product. The visual of the end result should match the quality of the writing therein.
4. What does it take to run a small press?(Asked by: ruthie67)
An industrial-sized bottle of Pepto.
Seriously, though, it takes an attention to detail, a willingness to listen and learn, and a lot of patience. Because inevitably, when you say that you’re trying to get something done by Spring, you’ll get seven angry emails in February wondering why it isn’t finished yet. *facepalm* With a small press, you have to know everything and do everything. Sometimes others won’t or can’t come through for you and you have to do it yourself.
5. Hi Mandi, congratulations on building success as a writer and as a small press! I’m going to sneak in two questions, since there aren’t a lot here: Inky Monkey is a fun name, and it lets you wear that cool hat… how did you pick the name? (Asked by: Janet Sketchley: janetsketchley.wordpress.com)
Ink Monkey actually came about because of Minkey – short version of the story, Mom had him for Christmas and then me for Thanksgiving, so he’s sort of like an older brother. We have baby pics where we’re about the same size sitting together on a chair and I’m holding his hand. So when I started the mag, I decided my thing was going to be that he was in every piece of cover art. (The only exception I’ve made is for the 1000 Words anthos, since they’re based on a photo, and I use that as the cover art…) With a visual like that, you can’t really call it Spaghetti with a side of Prose or something.
6. And which do you prefer, writing your own work or editing your acquisitions? (Asked by: Janet Sketchley: janetsketchley.wordpress.com)
I always prefer my own stuff. Editing is the suck.
7. Also what is your biggest vice you have while writing (chocolate, cigars, Disney movies)(Asked by: Cabin Goddess)
I really don’t have specific/regular vices. I’m a kind of moody writer, so sometimes I need a busy room and a word war (a 15-ish minute writing sprint against another person – or your cat if you’re despirate. Or Minkey if you’re *really* despirate.), other times, I need an actual desk and it to be quiet. But I don’t drink coffee or tea, don’t smoke, and don’t drink all that often. Oh, and a deadline. I can have six years to write something, but make it due tomorrow, and I’ll kick out 10k in a few hours.
8. So I always ask this question because seriously…. cake or pie and what flavor? (Asked by: Amanda Jones)
Did you seriously just ask a fat kid a dessert question?!
Apple Pie for sure, although when I need to make something in a pinch, I’ve done chocolate or butterscotch (probably a thousand times each). But cake is definitely my favorite. Chocolate, White, Raspberry, I don’t care, but it absolutely has to have homemade buttercream icing on it – none of that crap that they whip with cool whip and pass off from grocery story bakeries, actual honest-to-Bob buttercream. Chocolate buttercream is better. But no nuts, caramel, coconut… Keep it simple. Also, you’ve now made me hungry.
9.Are you a mac or a pc person? (Asked by: Virginia Jennings- www.virginialorijennings.com)
PC. Always have been. Much too poor to do the Mac thing.
10. If you could take any character on vacation- who would it be and where would you go? Tell us what you would do on your trip? (Asked by: Virginia Jennings- www.virginialorijennings.com)
If I could take a character on a date…
Hawkeye from the Avengers. We’d go out to dinner and end up back in his nest for some one on one… ermm… archery. That’s it. An archery lesson. (Is that an arrow in his pocket or is he happy to see me?!)
From the Admin:Oh YUM! I liked your dessert answer! I’m a cake person too- with icecream preferably… You caught me by surprise with an Avenger character! I never expected that one!
You can find Mandi‘s Book‘s on Amazon here