Outside the box
publication date February 21
Seven authors, all with impeccable writing credentials, present their anthology called OUTSIDE THE BOX: Women Writing Women.
We’ve each proved our worth with awards, fellowships, teaching posts and commercial success. We’ve all self-published to keep our hard-earned independence and our artistic identity. Now we’re teaming up for an ebook collection of our full-length fiction featuring a diverse collection of unlikely heroines. There’s no one genre. Each novel is a character-led page-turner.
We want to prove that fine, original writers are creating work of value and quality. And we want to entertain you.
The anthology will be available for 90 days from February 21, 2015.
BLUE MERCY by Orna Ross
The book: Mercy stands accused of killing her elderly and tyrannical father. Now, at the end of her life, she needs Star, the daughter she fought to protect, to know what really happened that fateful night in 1989.
The author: Orna Ross writes novels, poems and the Go Creative! book series. The Bookseller calls her “one of the 100 most influential people in publishing” for her work with The Alliance of Independent Authors.
CRAZY FOR TRYING by Joni Rodgers
The book: A regional bestseller short-listed for the Barnes & Noble Discover Award. In the 1970s, a troubled young woman heads west to create a new identity and shake off the burden of her mother’s radical past, but love and loneliness take her life in an unexpected direction.
The author: Joni Rogers hit the New York Times bestseller list with her cancer memoir Bald in the Land of Big Hair. She is also ghost-writer of numerous other bestsellers and founder of the League of Extraordinary Authors. Joni lives in Houston, Texas.
MY MEMORIES OF A FUTURE LIFE by Roz Morris
The book: In this work of literary fiction, a brilliant pianist’s career is ended by injury. She turns to a mysterious healer and faces the possibility that her life is someone else’s past incarnation.
The author: Roz Morris earned her spurs as a ghost-writer, selling more than four million books writing the novels of other people. She is a writers’ mentor and a radio show host, and she teaches writing masterclasses for The Guardian newspaper.
THE CENTAURESS by Kathleen Jones
The book: Bereaved biographer Alex Forbes goes to war-ravaged Croatia to research the life of a celebrity artist and finds herself at the centre of a family conflict after she uncovers a mutilated photograph, stolen letters and a story of indeterminate gender, passion and betrayal.
The author: Kathleen Jones lives in Italy and is a Royal Literary Fund Fellow. She is best known for her award-winning biographies, and has also written extensively for the BBC.
AN UNCHOREOGRAPHED LIFE by Jane Davis
The book: Alison gave up the chance to be a prima ballerina when she became pregnant and turned to prostitution to provide for her child, but the tempting hope of a better life may come at a terrible price.
The author: Jane Davis won the Daily Mail Award for her first novel, which secured her a publishing contract. She has now gone on to self-publish four other novels and isn’t afraid to tackle the trickiest of subjects.
ONE NIGHT AT THE JACARANDA by Carol Cooper
The book: Diagnosed with cancer, Sanjay has no time to waste. Laure is a successful lawyer, Harriet is a struggling freelance writer, and Karen is a single mother of four. Before they can find a soul-mate, they each need to confront who they really are.
The author: Carol Cooper is a London-based journalist and award-winning non-fiction author. Her debut novel was a finalist in the Indie Excellence Awards 2014. In her spare time she’s a doctor.
WHITE LADY by Jessica Bell
The book: Sonia, unfaithful wife of a Melbourne drug lord, yearns for sharp objects and blood. But now that she’s rehabilitating herself as a “normal” mother and maths teacher, it’s time to stop dreaming about slicing people’s throats. Easier said than done.
The author: Jessica Bell is an Australian novelist, poet, singer/ songwriter /guitarist who lives in Athens, Greece. She is Publishing Editor of Vine Leaves Literary Journal and author of the bestselling Writing in a Nutshell series.
OUTSIDE THE BOX: Women Writing Women (February 20, 2015 for 90 days) £7.99/$9.99 from Amazon, Nook, iBooks, Kobo and more.
Some of the authors have kindly answered a few questions.
“Most collections are from just one author, or one publisher, or at least in the same genre, whether that’s historical romance or detective fiction. But these seven books are very different. [How] do you think the mix [of genres] will work for readers?”
We also want to prove that fine, original authors are self-publishing as a mark of independence and integrity, and doing work of value and quality. You might ask: is that still necessary? Does anyone still consider self-publishing to be ‘vanity’ or second rate? They clearly do, because this is one of the issues we’ve been asked about most frequently. And we have all encountered attitudes in the books world that demonstrate we are regarded as inferior. Try joining a professional body, applying for a grant or entering an award, or requesting a review. Happily, we are already changing minds. Book bloggers and journalists who are normally wary of self-published books have welcomed us.
“What made you self-publish instead of going down the traditional route?”
I have an agent, and all my previous books were traditionally published, in fact they were all commissioned. But they were non-fiction, mainly on child health and parenting, and I believe that’s very tough to get in front of the right readers without the backing of a trade publisher. My first novel was a different proposition. Nobody had asked me to write it, and I realised that, even in the best case scenario, it would take some time to find someone to publish it. I was also keen to write One Night at the Jacaranda as I wanted to, without the constraints that traditional publishers often impose. The publishing landscape had changed, and I had no qualms about self-publishing. Now I realise it’s the best thing I could have done, though my non-fiction will still be trade-published. I’m what some call a hybrid author, with a foot in each camp.
Why do you write?
Why? has to be one of the most complex questions people ask me, and also the most frequent. You’d think after five years of being asked Why? I’d have prepared an answer. But my initial reaction is always, I don’t really know. Erm … because?
I write what I’m inspired to write, and inspiration comes in various forms, and often in no form at all, but as a mere sweep of energy that tempts me to sit down and type. Sometimes I type not knowing my intention, creating characters out of thin air who eventually become fully-developed creatures who star in the show. Sometimes, as with White Lady, the star of the show doesn’t show her face until the third draft and I am forced to reshape the entire book around her. So, as you can see, there is no why, but there is definitely reason. I suppose that reason is, “because I love it.”
I hate to sound clichéd, but writing, for me, is something I do because I would dissolve into nothing if I didn’t. I really hate saying something like that. I know so many writers play the “I can’t not write” card, but I truly think it’s because it’s so irrevocably true. You’ll see we work so hard for very little return when you compare the hours we put in with the money we make. Any logical person would think thrice about diving into such a profession. But we don’t. And that determination can only come from a deep desire to fulfil ourselves creatively.
1st Prize- brand new kindle pre-loaded with the book
10 runners up prizes – A Digital swag bag