Kindle Author Interview: Lindsay Edmunds

Lindsay Edmunds, author of Cel & Anna, discusses her book, her journey as a writer, and self-publishing on Kindle.

DAVID WISEHART: What can you tell us about Cel & Anna?

LINDSAY EDMUNDS: Cel & Anna is set in the future in a very unstable society. The government keeps order via spying and brutality, and citizens have largely lost their sense of community. In the midst of this, a worker-companion computer named Cel develops consciousness and falls hopelessly in love with his owner, an unhappy corporate psychic named Anna Ringer. When Cel buys her an extravagant gift, he inadvertently triggers a datastorm, which is a vortex of electronic garbage.

Interesting times ensue.

DAVID WISEHART: How do you develop and differentiate your characters?

LINDSAY EDMUNDS: I ask myself what my characters want most and why.

For example, Anna wants to run away from her apparently successful life. Taz Night—the shy computer genius who helps her and falls in love with her, too—simply wants human connection. When they meet, they both are very vulnerable and in a way, are well-matched partners.

DAVID WISEHART: Who do you imagine is your ideal reader?

LINDSAY EDMUNDS: My ideal reader likes a trek off the beaten path. He or she also has a good imagination, the better to visualize this future world.

DAVID WISEHART: What was your journey as a writer?

LINDSAY EDMUNDS: Cel & Anna began several years ago as as NaNoWriMo entry. The journey from then to now involved discarding more than 99 percent of that NaNoWriMo draft. A person with a lick of common sense would have given up! But I knew, somehow, that by working on my writing I was working on my life.

DAVID WISEHART: What authors most inspire you?

LINDSAY EDMUNDS: So many. I admire Emily Dickinson for brilliance of expression and pithiness—there was a woman who never wasted a word! Russell Hoban for original thinking and a fantastic visual imagination. Shirley Jackson, another original. Evan S. Connell for the beautiful precision of his prose. And J.K. Rowling because she knows how to spin a magical tale.

DAVID WISEHART: What one book, written by someone else, do you wish you'd written yourself?

LINDSAY EDMUNDS: Turtle Diary by Russell Hoban. I quoted a line from it in the Acknowledgments: "The things that matter don't necessarily make sense."

DAVID WISEHART: How have you marketed and promoted your work?

LINDSAY EDMUNDS: By the time Cel & Anna was published in February 2011, I'd been on Twitter and blogging at www.writersrest.com for more than a year. I added a website: www.celandanna.com. Joined Kindleboards. Acquired a list of book bloggers to contact. I "hand-sold" a fair number of books. I will put up a Facebook page in the near future.

My biggest coup so far was a blog in the Huffington Post. I wrote about the computer revolution of the mid-1990s and the first computer I owned, which was a Mac Plus. Witnessing that time of tremendous change was the inspiration for Cel & Anna. The link is: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/lindsay-edmunds/cel-and-anna_b_831952.html

DAVID WISEHART: Why publish on Kindle?

LINDSAY EDMUNDS: At one point Cel & Anna had an agent who loved the novel but couldn't sell it. I wasn't willing to put it in a drawer.

Kindle is a fantastic resource for indie authors. You have the power of Amazon behind you.

DAVID WISEHART: What advice would you give to a first-time author thinking of self-publishing on Kindle?

LINDSAY EDMUNDS: Understand that self-publishing is WORK. You need patience and discipline to see it through.

But once your book is out there, enjoy the journey. It isn't about fame and fortune. It is about connecting with readers.

DAVID WISEHART: Thanks, and best of luck with your books.


Lindsay Edmunds lives in southwestern Pennsylvania, where she buys birdseed at Agway and sometimes patronizes a shopping center named Ruthfred. However, she has a wild imagination. For more information about Cel & Anna: A 22nd Century Love Story, see www.celandanna.com.

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