Hello folks! Today, author Erin Sands will be guest-posting on TBAP as part of the tour for her new book, The Dunes. Please, make her feel welcome!
My name is Erin Sands and I am the author of a faith-based, inspirational book entitled, The Dunes. Although every author’s journey is different, there are three key points that when applied will make your indie author experience far more rewarding.
Strive for Excellence
As an author, writing The Dunes reinforced the most important and the most necessary aspect of writing: Re-Writing. . There is no way around that. To produce excellence as a writer you must be open to re-writing and re-writing again and then re-writing some more after that. A first draft is merely that, a “first” draft. As writers we need to be open to re-examining the way we expose a story or a point of view to the reader. We are not our audience so if you are the only one who understands your writing, that’s a problem. There were times when I was completely blocked and I would write something down on the page just so I could move on to the next thought. Luckily my husband wouldn’t let me get away with it. He would take one look at it and shake his head “no” and give it back to me. I can’t tell you how infuriating that was! How many times I wanted to yell and scream at him but I am so grateful he did not let me fall victim to my impatience of wanting to be finished with my book. He knew that I could express the idea in a better way for the reader and he made me stick to it. The funny part is, my husband wasn’t even my editor, these were just the challenges I went through before I gave my manuscript to my editor, who upon receiving it made even more suggestions on how to make the book better. Writing is re-writing and in the end when you have a book that you are proud of from cover to cover, you will know that it was worth it.
Nothing Beats a Great Cover
The aesthetic design of your book is essential. The cover of your book is your first “hello” to the reader. It is your 3-second commercial and it needs to give readers insight into your story at a glance. Finding someone who is able to graphically illustrate the heart of your book is key. I worked with my cover designer for months before we finally settled on a cover that I believed masterfully articulated the beauty and the transformative nature of The Dunes. Getting the interior design of my book just right was also an integral aspect in my publishing journey. The choice of font, the font size, the layout and page color are all things that can make your book flow seamlessly in the readers mind or be disruptive and jarring. It is important to take the time to make sure that those choices compliment your book and allow for the experience you want your readers to have.
Have Patience with the Journey
When you are in the process of writing your book you are consistently rewriting and working on your manuscript to make it the best that it can be. When you have completed that process you are working with others like cover designers and interior designers to bring your vision to life. That aspect alone requires a great deal of patience and focus because you are bringing other people and their talents to the table to manifest the vision you have for your book. After your book actually becomes a “thing” and an entity, then a whole new journey begins about how to most effectively get the word out about your book and not only that but how to share with readers why your book and what you want to share with them is worth their time. The great thing about social media for indie authors is the ability to promote your books and connect with readers in a much broader way. It is literally a global stage for ideas and promotion. Social media does not discriminate; it has leveled the playing field for content creators. An indie author can promote their book on Twitter and Facebook the same way a traditionally published author can. Take advantage of that fact!
Great writing is more than just a gift; it is a talent that is cultivated through discipline, focus and creativity. Here’s to excellence in writing and a fulfilling, fruitful author journey!
About the Book
In life, sometimes the kernels of wisdom and the richness of revelation can be found in the most innocent of stories; and so it is with The Dunes. Join one man and one woman in an exquisitely simple yet remarkably profound journey as you discover with them that the mountain you must climb in order to live the abundant life of your dreams is located squarely within your heart.
Illuminated in seven revelations; The Dunes carries the reader on a journey to not only examine the obstacles that are holding them back in life but to conquer and overcome them as well. With each revelation The Dunes intimately calls on the reader as the journey companion to face a challenge…a dare if you will that requires an uncompromising commitment to change. In the family of faith-based self help books The Dunes stands alone, simultaneously taking the reader from fiction to life and back again, equipped with a tailor made journal for the readers inner most secrets and reflections. The Dunes is part allegory, part testimony and part journal but the best part is the healing it offers your heart. When you’re ready to step out of your comfort zone and step into the miracle of your life…The Dunes awaits.
Caution: Readers of this book are subject to significant changes for the better. Side effects include frequent smiling and enjoying life in every season.
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About Erin Sands
Born in Cincinnati, Ohio and raised in the Bay Area of Northern California, Erin grew up with an innate love for dance, theater, and, the written word. A graduate of Loyola Marymount University, Erin began her career in the arts as an actress and choreographer. After booking several notable roles in television and film, Erin began to use her gift of writing in blogs featuring political and social commentary, as well as developing content for theatrical use.
Although The Dunes, is a divine departure from Erin’s previous writings it is by far her most cherished work to date. “I wrote The Dunes initially as self therapy because I needed to release some painful experiences and disappointments from my past. I had this thirst to walk in the complete fullness of life with joy as my constant companion. I had no idea what effect it would have on other people. But when I saw people read it and be released from fears that had held them back for years…when I saw people forgive and be able to walk in the freedom forgiveness brings…when I saw people commit and serve and how those things opened up new opportunities in their life, I was just humbled. Humbled by the awesome power of God and humbled that I had been allowed to go along for the ride”.
When asked why she writes, Erin pauses and reflects on the truth of her heart. “I write because although I am only now beginning to truly love the process, I have always loved the outcome. Like a composer, words become my notes. I string them together in song eliciting the response of my reader, grafting a picture of my soul. Where besides the written word can you effect change so utterly and so succinctly? What besides the written word can pierce the universal collective mind? Everything begins with a thought, but it isn’t until that thought is articulated in written word and those words passed down can life changing movement happen. It must be written, it must be expressed on tablet, and when it is, we all become greater, whether the writing be genius or fatuity, it has evoked thought and debate. Why wouldn’t I want to be a part of that phenomenon? Why wouldn’t I want to share my story, give my testimony…add my paradigm to the mix? Whether it is a novel, a poem, an essay or an article, it is humanity visited. An insight into a new or sometimes shared truth. In the beginning was the word, and the word was with God and the word was God. And with that I live my life”.