Ebony McKenna is an indie writer from Melbourne and is the author of 7 young adult romance novels, including The Ondine Series – The Summer of Shambles, The Autumn Palace, The Winter of Magic and The Spring Revolution, several short stories, and her non-fiction book Edit Your Own Romance Novel featuring the ‘How-To’ of writing a back burning backstory, the 13 main romance scene cards, and the staircase of turning points.
But for the release of her latest novel, The Girl and the Ghost, a YA paranormal romance, she wanted more than just getting her books on the YA shelf in bookstores. As an indie author there is a lot more to do behind the scenes and part of that is being brave enough to put yourself out there (the dreaded self promotion) and as Ebony said when I spoke to her about her book launch that ‘2017 was her year of showing up‘. So, after attending several book launches at Dymocks Melbourne she steadied her nerves and introduced herself to Louise and Emma from Dymocks and showed them her books with a view to getting them on the shelves. After attending another book launch for YA author Ellie Marney with her first indie release, No Limits, Ebony asked Louise at Dymocks whether she could launch her next book – The Girl and the Ghost – in their space. The answer – yes.
For Ebony this was an exciting moment for indie authors. ‘You really can launch your indie book at a mainstream bookstore,’ says Ebony.
As an independent author there are so many challenges and so many things to learn but it’s all worth it in the end. With the wonderful help of Dymocks Melbourne Ebony launched The Girl and the Ghost on Friday 13th October (a great day for a book launch about a ghost!) and as Ebony says ‘…it was a blast.’ People came, they bought books and she signed them. It all sounds very normal for mainstream authors but for indie authors it is something that we really have to step up and organise ourselves – and for Ebony – being able to launch at Melbourne Dymocks was a big win and helps with further promotion of her books. As Ebony says, having a book launch ‘….shows you’re doing things and getting out there, and the upshot was all seven of my novels were on the shelf at Dymocks in Collins St.’
‘I had plenty of books for readers to check out. I took loads and loads of photos and couldn’t stop smiling. I did a reading and made a speech and I signed books. I loaded heaps of pictures on to Facebook and twitter and kept spreading the word.’ – Ebony McKenna.
For more information about Ebony McKenna or her other books click here
Lisa Fleetwood is a book lover, writer and blogger at Welcome to My Library, creator of Bookends Publishing and author of travel memoir Destination Dachshund: Three Months, Three Generations & Sixty Dachshunds. She loves tea, travel and is obsessed with dachshunds. Follow Lisa on Twitter @LisaFleetwood or Facebook.