TCR: When did you discover you were a writer?
VW: My background is that I have an Industrial Engineering degree and a Masters in Business Administration. English classes and writing were my escapes from the math and science aspects of my coursework.
TCR: When did you start writing?
VW: I started writing in high school, but I really didn’t get into it until I was laid off from my job in 1996. That’s when I started going to writing and poetry groups. Then life got in the way, I still had to work, and I went to graduate school. It took about five years to write Nice Guys Finish Last.
TCR: What was the writing process like for Nice Guys Finish Last?
VW: I mostly write poetry. But I came to a low point in my poetry writing. So I started writing NGFL as a short story. Then the short story became chapters. I would write a chapter, and then set it aside. I literally just let things happen. I didn’t do an outline. Instead, I let the characters take me where they wanted to go. Plus I observed and listened to the people around me to get ideas for the story.
TCR: What is the story about?
VW: Nice Guys Finish Last is a story about the struggle of the female-male relationship. That relationship is complex and the characters try to deal with it and give their own opinions about it. Everybody thinks they have the answers, but it‘s not that simple.
TCR: Why did you decide to self-publish? And how has technology advanced story writing?
VW: I honestly had no clue as to how to categorize my book. So I decided to self-publish and find my audience on my own. I used Lulu.com, a self-publishing website. Lulu gets faster feedback and gets to market faster. I used their formatting, proofing and cover design services as well. Technology, in general, has helped with the development of a draft faster. Not writing by long hand and typing the manuscript makes it easier to re-read and re-write. Plus revisions are easier. Global distributions through a website gives the writer access to many more readers.
This Common Reader, on self-publishing:
Self-publishing is a game changer in the world of the traditional publisher-agent dynasty. The author can now pen their great American novel and manage the other tasks of getting the great work to us, the readers.
With the advancement of the print process to print on demand, retail to online retail (hello, Amazon.com) and book to eBook, the self-publishing entrepreneurs are filling the gap with do-it-yourself formatting, editing, design, and promotion services.
According to one random publishing directory site I visited; there are about 500 e-publishing organizations around the world, 85 of which are in the United States. It will be interesting to watch this industry unfold and see how it impacts the common reader.