Remix, discusses her book, her journey as a writer, and self-publishing on Kindle.
DAVID WISEHART: What can you tell us about Remix?
LEXI REVELLIAN: Caz Tallis restores rocking horses in her London workshop. When shabby but charismatic Joe and his dog turn up on her roof terrace, she is reluctantly drawn into investigating a rock star’s murder from three years before.
It’s a feel-good page turner.
DAVID WISEHART: How do you develop and differentiate your characters?
LEXI REVELLIAN: Before starting chapter one, I write loads of notes; the background of my characters, where they live, their childhood, pets, photographs, snippets of scenes. I don’t use all of this in the book, but it gives them depth. Getting the name right is important. And when I start writing, they tend to become wilful and go in directions I hadn’t expected. Corny, but true.
DAVID WISEHART: Who do you imagine is your ideal reader?
LEXI REVELLIAN: Someone who reads the novel as I wrote it; and I know from many reviews on Amazon UK that there are people who do. Some readers email me when they’ve finished the book, and this makes my day.
DAVID WISEHART: What was your journey as a writer?
LEXI REVELLIAN: My daughter suggested we wrote a fantasy novel together; I started and couldn’t stop. It was the most fun… I’d always been too much in awe of my favourite writers to attempt fiction before that.
DAVID WISEHART: What is your writing process?
LEXI REVELLIAN: I work out the theme, the beginning, the key scene at the end, and some of the characters, then go for it. I polish each chapter before moving to the next, revise when the first draft is finished and get the opinions of six to ten beta readers to pick out plot holes and bits they don’t like.
DAVID WISEHART: What authors most inspire you?
LEXI REVELLIAN: Jane Austen and Mary Renault—but I’ve enjoyed a lot of novels. I love the unputdownable-ness of early Dick Francis thrillers, and tried to emulate this quality in Remix. There are several dozen novels so good I reread them at regular intervals.
DAVID WISEHART: What one book, written by someone else, do you wish you'd written yourself?
LEXI REVELLIAN: What a difficult question! Probably Emma by Jane Austen. Fiction does not get much better than that.
DAVID WISEHART: How did you create your cover?
LEXI REVELLIAN: I have a passionate love/hate relationship with Adobe Photoshop 7.0—but at least I have mastered lettering. My daughter posed for me with the rocking horses, and later I changed to another, simpler shot for Kindle as the original did not reproduce well as a thumbnail. Red lettering bleeds on Amazon, for some reason, so I changed to white.
DAVID WISEHART: How have you marketed and promoted your work?
LEXI REVELLIAN: I’ve had a writing website and blog for years. I can’t cope with Facebook, but I tweet. Remix has appeared on several review websites; the American ones are terrific, but in the UK they hardly exist. I was very lucky to have Remix chosen as October’s Book of the Month on KUF. And once you hit the top 100 UK Kindle chart, your book becomes highly visible and sales increase.
DAVID WISEHART: Why publish on Kindle?
LEXI REVELLIAN: It’s free, a huge growth area, and costs no more than your time.
DAVID WISEHART: What advice would you give to a first-time author thinking of self-publishing on Kindle?
LEXI REVELLIAN: Write an excellent book; it’s much harder to promote one that is only okay. Then make sure you edit properly (get help if you need it). Use beta readers, and listen to what they say, don’t argue. An attractive cover helps, and correct formatting is essential; check EVERY page on the Preview facility on the Digital Text Platform. Once published, like a child off to school, your book will still need you, so don’t leave it to struggle on its own.
DAVID WISEHART: Thanks, and best of luck with your books.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
"The Kindle version of Remix has spent 79 days in the UK top 100, and sold 6,500 copies since August so far. I haven’t promoted much in the US (should do more) but Remix is mostly in the top 5,000 there.
"My day job is designing and making jewellery and silver under my real name, Lexi Dick. I've made pieces for Margaret Thatcher, 10 Downing Street and Her Majesty the Queen."
Visit her website.
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