This week’s featured Writers Wednesday writer (try saying that five times fast…) is Catherine Ryan Howard, self-published author extraordinaire. She hails from Cork, Ireland and has written and self-published three books, two of which I’ve had the pleasure of reading, Mousetrapped and Self-Printed: The Sane Person’s Guide to Self-Publishing; she also has a fantastic blog Catherine, Caffeinated, which I subscribe to on my Google Reader. So yes, I guess you could call me a fan…(or, perhaps, a stalker? Bah, semantics!)
I stumbled across Self-Printed while looking for an e-book to write an honest-to-God book report for a publishing course I was taking at NYU called Digital Strategies in the Book Industry. Great course, btw, if any of you would be interested in taking it. Felt strange to write a book report again… felt strange to be in class at all again, actually!
But, I digress. The assignment was to read an e-book about digital publishing. I wanted to know more about the e-book self-publishing boom phenomenon, and found Catherine’s by doing a quick search on Amazon for “self-publishing.” There were a few other self-published e-books written on the topic self-publishing, but her reviews were great, and she had a beautiful cover that didn’t plaintively wail “self-published!” at first (or any) glance.
If I wasn’t before, I was 100% sold after a quick Google search pulled up her blog. Her voice is witty, accessible, and fun. When you read her writing, you think to yourself Self, I want to be friends with this person IRL! (“in real life” for those of you unfamiliar with this Internet meme. Welcome to the party—grab a drink and mingle!)
The book outlines how to successfully self-publish your manuscript and use an online platform to generate sales. She’s very realistic in her approach, and writes with a no-nonsense attitude and a zero tolerance for whiners.
Her sales tactics totally work—at least they have in my case. After reading Self-Printed and subsequently following her blog, I found myself realizing more and more that I just had to read Mousetrapped, her debut book, a memoir on her brief stint in Orlando, Florida working as a front desk clerk for a hotel in Disney World. The kicker: most of this period she was car-less and, effectively, mousetrapped in the “happiest place on earth!”
Great book. Great writer. Great things. OK, so, sort of a longer #ww post, but, the short of it is that I highly recommend that you all head over to Catherine Ryan Howard’s blog and click around a while! Perhaps purchase a self-published book or two? Go on, live a little!