Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Interview with Lillian Brummet - Part III

Welcome, Lillian Brummet, to Reviews and Interviews. It's a pleasure to chat with you once again. [This interview is broken into three segments over three months, and this is the 3rd of 3. Part 1 is here, Part II is here.]

Now we’ll focus a bit on your published writing, particularly your third book.

Please tell us about Purple Snowflake Marketing - How To Make Your Book Stand Out In A Crowd

What inspired you to write this book?
Actually, Purple Snowflake Marketing really is our own personal marketing plan. It is what we use to query or promote each piece we write, whether it is an article, poem, story or a book. The basic plan is the same – who you query changes and how long you market the piece changes… but the basically the same steps are taken along the way.

I found that after years of being referred to as the “pink bunny” because our marketing keeps going and going (you know, like the battery-bunny you see on commercials?) and also as the “marketing gal” or a “guru” on forums, I was being inundated with people wanting to know information about the world of writing. Often I was repeating the same answers over and over, so Dave and I then decided to put an e-book together with our own experience in this career for 10 years or more and resources we’ve continued to use in a step-by-step guide format.

Did you enjoy the research process? What did it entail?
The hardest research chore was researching our competition. I bought, borrowed and begged every writer’s advice book I could find from friends, family, libraries, stores and courses that we took over the years and found that many of them had gaps, just briefly described a step but didn’t cover the whole issue and the various ways it could be applied, or the subject matter was scattered all over the book instead of being in a neat chapter all together. With this in mind we knew we could make a much more user-friendly guide in e-book format for today’s writers, who are online a great deal of the time.

What was the hardest part of writing the book?
The organization and especially the appendices took a great deal of time and effort, as such I would have to say that this would be the hardest for me in retrospect – keeping in mind that patience is not my strongest suit. (She laughs).

Did you learn anything from writing your book? If so, what was it?
Purple Snowflake Marketing, both the 1st and 2nd editions, were our first experiences in the world of e-books as writers, as such it meant a whole new realm of research in how to market this genre and following up on all the amazing online resources there are for e-book authors.

After the completely revised edition of Purple Snowflake Marketing was released in the summer of 2009, we embarked on putting all our books in this format to reach this niche market of readers. We are now developing an online bookstore for our website where people can purchase the e-books we’ve written directly from our site. We are also setting up affiliate programs for those who’d like to sell our books on their site, or through their publication and receive a little kick-back each time someone purchases our work through them.

If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in this book?
That is an interesting question and brings me to one of the greatest assets of an e-book… it can be updated, revised or edited anytime! As such we intend to update Purple Snowflake Marketing as often as once every 12 to 18 months, with rich new content, new resources and tips that we have learned ourselves.

And now for a few fun questions.

What have you read for fun lately?
You really had me thinking about this question since I’ve just not had a chance to delve into a book in the last week or so. Normally, you don’t see me without a book – I’m not kidding! I’d be holding one while stirring the soup, watering the plants, eating… (she laughs).

Let’s see, the last book I read for fun, that didn’t have anything to do with work or setting up for a guest that I’ll be interviewing or something like that, was Prayer of the Dragon by Eliot Pattison, one of the “keepers” on our bookshelf. I’ve read this one a few times. It’s an interesting adventure involving Tibetan and Chinese traditions during a deadly period of political upheaval when the government was doing their best to eradicate certain religious groups. There is a mysterious murder that involves gold, greed and a desperate attempt to keep a tribal village from being ruined by outside intervention. A traveling Navajo American Indian monk was near the scene of the murder and in his trance was arrested and taken to the village. Two monks who are on the run from prosecution are charged with the solemn duty of solving the murder and help the villagers at the same time.

Besides writing, what do you do for fun? What are you hobbies?
My greatest joys in life happen in nature, or when I’m spending time with our dogs. I have a passion for music, lyrics and poetry and I enjoy spending the occasional hour or two pouring over a difficult Suduko or Logic puzzle. Dave and I love to garden and he is really an exceptional cook – whereas I prefer to bake.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
Having way too many screens open on my computer at any one time! This habit can often be helpful when I’m dealing with several programs such as e-mail, ical, and excel while communicating with a radio guest for instance. However, it can also be distracting since I’m notified when an e-mail arrives (which on a busy day is every few minutes) and I can get frustrated if I can’t find a screen buried under the others fast enough.

As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up?
Sadly, I didn’t really believe I would grow up. Even when I was a teenager and young adult I always believed I would die young. I guess it came from the upbringing I had, the chronic nightmares and the lack of hope for the future as a child. Looking back though, a memory arises of my dream to pursue a career in biology – I loved biology courses and really felt this was my calling. At the time, however I made the choice to stay and pursue the relationship with Dave – which I do not regret doing.

Yet I have always found comfort with the pen and when I search my vault of memories I can see many instances that point to a career with words. My earliest memories involve elementary classes where I was awarded several times for my writing. Once I remember being shocked that my story could make a teacher cry – it was a bit scary and I stopped writing for a while. The story? I remember clearly – it was about an elderly woman who wore bright gaudy clothing and thick orange lipstick and walked every day about town. I wrote about how meticulous she was in choosing each item that day and how it helped fill the gaping hole of depression and loneliness inside her and helped brighten her day – at least visually. I wrote that story before I was 7 years old, and although I do not have a copy of it – the teacher’s response must have shocked the memory permanently into my mind (she laughs).

And to wrap up…

Would you like to share a little about your blog with the audience?
Sure, I’d love to – Thank you. Well, the Brummet's Conscious Discussions Blog – is where you will find environmentally-conscious tips for every-day living, quote of the day and many resources for green living. You will also find interesting views into the world of writing, literacy, updates on the Conscious Discussions and Authors Read radio shows, prize contests and more.

Would you like to give a little information about your radio shows?
Ok – Conscious Discussions Talk Radio began back in 2007 on the Blogtalk Radio Station – which is now the #1 online talk radio station in the world. Conscious Discussions has now grown to air several times a week – on Tuesday and Thursdays I interview interesting individuals from around the globe who have found a way to make a positive difference. Every other Sunday offers Positive Eco-news Segments and in the growing season (April-September) I also offer a special episode called Sunday Gardening, where I talk about sustainable, organic gardening using bio-intensive, inter-cropping methods and open-pollinated crops. Listeners may hear me speaking about pollination issues one day and then tune in to hear me discuss growing a particular plant variety or giving composting advice the next time. It varies with each show.

Do you have a website where writers can learn more about you and your writing?
Yes, it is: - this site has links to everything we do, excerpts from all of our books that you can access for free to see if it appeals to you or not… you’ll find articles, resource links and much more there.

People can easily contact us via that same website address – just click on the “contact” link and follow the instructions on how to email us from there. Its really very easy and we love to hear from people.

Thank you for your time in answering my questions over this three part interview.
It has been a sincere pleasure, thank you for inviting me to be a part of this wonderful project!

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