Today on Indie Spotlight I would like to introduce you to accomplished independent author Terry Tyler.
Terry Tyler is the author of twenty-two books available from Amazon, the latest being The Visitor, a post-apocalyptic murder mystery set in the same world as her popular Project Renova series. She is a member of Rosie Amber’s Book Review Team, and likes to read historical fiction (12th-16th century), most stuff about the collapse of society and bleak dystopian futures, and non-fiction based on travel, sociological and anthropological subject matter.
Terry enjoys a TV binge – she is a Walking Dead obsessive, and also likes South Park, political/historical/crime documentaries, crime thrillers, and series that feature Travis Fimmel and Jason Momoa striding across barren landscapes. She used to be a committed rock chick but these days is more likely to agree to a nice walk in the park than an Aerosmith gig. She lives with her husband in the North East of England.
Contact Terry Tyler here:
Here is a list made by Terry of helpful articles for new authors: https://terrytyler59.blogspot.com/2019/02/stacks-of-useful-articles-for-writers.html
Hi Terry, thank you so much for taking part in this week’s Indie Spotlight and for putting me in contact with some of the other participants. I am looking forward to hearing what you have to say about life as an Indie Author…
What made you decide to publish your books independently?
I can’t imagine not having complete control over what and when I write, the advertising budget, the pricing, etc. That’s all it’s about, really. I had some interest from agents for a book I wrote in 2000, and later for You Wish and Kings and Queens, but on each occasion I received what amounted to the same answer: ‘Yes, we like it. Now can you rewrite it according to our specifications so we can sell it to a publisher.’ I’ve never been very good at doing what someone else thinks I ought to do! I sent Kings and Queens on a whim, in 2013, because I thought I’d hit on a rather novel idea; that was the last time, and it made me realise that trad pub probably wouldn’t suit me.
Yes I can see how it must be preferable to be in control of the process if you know what you are doing. It must be somewhat daunting for first time indie authors though. What are the most attractive benefits of being an indie author?
As above, and you get to keep all the royalties. I like being able to decide which book I pay to promote each month, on which sites. Aside from this, my books are exclusive to Amazon, which would not be possible if I had a publisher; Amazon exclusivity means being able to take advantage of Kindle Unlimited, which acts like a library – readers pay a small amount a month (I think about a tenner) and can read all the books they like. The author gets paid by the page, as long as the reader reads more than the first ten per cent. The royalty rate works out about the same as a sale. I do better on Kindle Unlimited than sales, so it’s not something I’m prepared to sacrifice.
Kindle and other e-readers seem to be the way to go these days, although personally, I still prefer physical books.
What challenges do indie authors face?
It’s all on you – that’s the other side of the freedom! Depending on your circumstances, you may have to pay for editing, proofreading, formatting, cover design, the preparation of the paperback, and advertising. For new authors, finding good editors and proofreaders can be a problem, as is getting your books ‘out there’ in a saturated market.
So there are a lot of different processes to learn about and manage. What advice would you give to aspiring indie authors?
Where do I start?! Here’s a (very) brief list, though there are lots of advice articles on my blog; I can point anyone who wants to take a look in the right direction.
Make sure you really want to write, and don’t just like the idea of being a writer. If you’re constantly seeking motivation, it might be that you don’t want to do it as much as you think you do.
Don’t rush to publish – your first attempt should not necessarily be your debut. Most successful writers have stacks of unpublished novels, novellas and short stories.
Get recommendations from established writers before handing money over to editors, proofreaders, manuscript assessors, social media promoters, writing mentors – any of these. There are thousands of people trying to make money out of writers these days, and some are just cowboys with great websites.
If any publisher asks you to ‘contribute towards the cost’ of publishing, run a mile. These days, vanity presses often call themselves ‘hybrid publishers’, and will flatter you and tell you how much they’re looking forward to working with you, then hit you with ‘because we’re taking a risk on a new author, we ask for a contribution towards the cost’. The reason they’re looking forward to working with you is because they want your money. They will publish almost anything, as long as the £££ are being handed over.
Here is a list I made of helpful articles for new authors: https://terrytyler59.blogspot.com/2019/02/stacks-of-useful-articles-for-writers.html
I’m sure other authors will find your tips very useful, thank you for sharing them. What have you learned from being an indie author?
That you never stop learning, about writing itself, reaching readers, promotion – all of it. I’d just like to say here, too, that having to do all the promotion myself (almost solely via Twitter) has led to the making of many lovely writer and blogger online friends, quite a few of whom I now know in real life, too.
It is hard to believe that 2020 is finally coming to an end, but something of a relief. What can we look forward to seeing from you in 2021?
I am currently working on Book #3 in my dystopian Operation Galton series. It is called Megacity, and is the final book to follow on from Hope (which was meant to be a stand-alone) and Wasteland (which was meant to be the conclusion of a two-book series!). I aim to have it ready for publication by May or June, but I’m giving it as long as it needs, because it’s a multi-faceted story that will take time to develop and think through.
After that, I am not sure. I may write a sequel to The Visitor, if I arrive at a story worthy of telling; a sequel should always have the potential to be better than the first book. If not, I will move away from the post-apocalyptic and dystopian, for a while. I have a few more stories taking shape in my head.
Ooh – I hope a sequel to Visitor pops into your head! I’m looking forward to Megacity in the Summer best of luck with it! It’s been lovely having you join me on my blog this week, Terry. Thanks again.
5 of Terry’s books
In 2024, a mystery virus ravages the entire world. ‘Bat Fever’ is highly contagious and one hundred per cent lethal.
A cottage tucked away in an isolated Norfolk village seems like the ideal place to sit out a catastrophic pandemic, but some residents of Hincham resent the arrival of Jack, Sarah and their friends, while others want to know too much about them.
What the villagers don’t know is that beneath Sarah’s cottage is a fully-stocked, luxury survival bunker. A post-apocalyptic ‘des res’.
Hincham isolates itself from the rest of the country, but the deaths continue―and not from the virus. There’s a killer on the loose, but is it a member of the much-depleted community, or somebody from outside? Paranoia is rife, as friend suspects friend, and everybody suspects the newcomers.
Most terrifying of all is that nobody knows who’s next on the list…
The Visitor is Terry Tyler’s twenty-second Amazon publication, and is set in the same world as her Project Renova series, while being a completely separate, stand-alone novel.
Add The Visitor to your To Be Read list here:
Buy The Visitor here:
‘I didn’t know danger was floating behind us on the breeze as we walked along the beach, seeping in through the windows of our picture postcard life.’
Year 2024. New social networking site Private Life bursts onto the scene. Across the world, a record number of users sign up.
A deadly virus is discovered in a little known African province, and it’s spreading—fast. The UK announces a countrywide vaccination programme. Members of underground group Unicorn believe the disease to be man-made – and that Private Life might not be as private as it claims.
Vicky Keating’s boyfriend, Dex, is working for Unicorn over two hundred miles away when the first UK outbreak is detected in her home town of Shipden, on the Norfolk coast. The town is placed under military controlled quarantine and, despite official assurances that there is no need for panic, within days the virus is unstoppable.
As the country descends into chaos, there are scores to be settled further north….
Add Tipping Point to your To Be Read list here:
Buy Tipping Point here:
Terry Tyler’s nineteenth published work is a psychological thriller set in a dystopian near future – the UK, Year 2028.
Blogger Lita Stone and journalist Nick Freer live and work online, seeing life through soundbites, news TV and social media. Keeping the outside world at bay in their cosy flat, they observe the ruthless activities of the new PM and his celebrity fitness guru wife, Mona (hashtag MoMo), with the mild outrage that can be quelled simply by writing another blog post.
Meanwhile, in the outside world, multinational conglomerate Nutricorp is busy buying up supermarket chains, controlling the media, and financing the new compounds for the homeless: the Hope Villages.
Lita and Nick suspect little of the danger that awaits the unfortunate, until the outside world catches up with them – and Lita is forced to discover a strength she never knew she possessed.
Add Hope to your To Be Read list here:
Buy Hope here:
“Those who escape ‘the system’ are left to survive outside society. The fortunate find places in off-grid communities; the others disappear into the wasteland.”
The year: 2061. In the new UK megacities, the government watches every move you make. Speech is no longer free—an ‘offensive’ word reaching the wrong ear means a social demerit and a hefty fine. One too many demerits? Job loss and eviction, with free transport to your nearest community for the homeless: the Hope Villages.
Rae Farrer is the ultimate megacity girl – tech-loving, hard-working, law-abiding and content – until a shocking discovery about her birth forces her to question every aspect of life in UK Megacity 12.
On the other side of the supposedly safe megacity walls, a few wastelanders suspect that their freedom cannot last forever…
Wasteland is the stand-alone sequel to ‘Hope’, the concluding book in the two-part Operation Galton series, and Terry Tyler’s twenty-first publication.
Add Wasteland to your To Be Read list here:
Buy Wasteland here:
The Devil You Know
Every serial killer is someone’s friend, spouse, lover or child….
Young women are being murdered in the Lincolnshire town of Lyndford, where five people fear someone close to them might be the monster the police are searching for.
One of them is right.
Juliet sees an expert’s profile of the average serial killer and realises that her abusive husband, Paul, ticks all the boxes.
Maisie thinks her mum’s new boyfriend seems too good to be true. Is she the only person who can see through Gary’s friendly, sensitive façade?
Tamsin is besotted with her office crush, Jake. Then love turns to suspicion…
Steve is used to his childhood friend, Dan, being a loud mouthed Lothario with little respect for the truth. But is a new influence in his life leading him down a more sinister path?
Dorothy’s beloved son, Orlando, is keeping a secret from her—a chilling discovery forces her to confront her worst fears.
THE DEVIL YOU KNOW is a character-driven psychological drama that will keep you guessing until the very end.
Add The Devil You Know to your To Be Read list here:
Buy The Devil You Know here:
Who’s next on Indie Spotlight?
Next Thursday I will be welcoming Valerie Poore to the Christmas Indie Spotlight. Hope you will join us for a glass of something and a mince pie!