Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Indie October Author Interview and Giveaway: G.S. Johnston

Today I'm interviewing G.S. Johnston, author of Consumption. Welcome to him and make sure you check out the giveaway at the bottom of the page!

A picture of the author.

1. How did you get the idea for Consumption?

It came from a number of things. For a while I'd wanted to write something about
the limits of friendship. When you've been great friends, almost like a sibling, it's
very hard to break that off, even when the prevailing winds would suggest that's the
warranted thing to do.

A long while ago the allure of material objects waned off for me. People seem so
ready to define themselves by the acquisition of consumer objects, as if these mass-
produced objects, like a car or a fur coat, even a pair of sunglasses or jeans, some how
express their unerring individuality. This seemed an inexplicable contradiction.

So I started thinking about bringing these two things together, that is, a long
term friendship cleaved by Sara rejecting conspicuous consumption and Martin
wholeheartedly embracing it.

2. Can you tell us who your favorite character in Consumption is? Why?

I love all my characters equally but Martin did precipitate well as a narcissistic
sociopath, the scourge of modernity. But I like Peggy too. She's the type of friend we
all need. She opinionated and decently forceful yet very self contained.

3. What's the best thing about being a self-published author? What's the hardest?

The best thing is getting a book published. Doing it through e-publishing means my
novel is read by people all over the world. That's fun and inspiring.

I guess the mid-ground advantage is total control. I had to work with a designer on
the cover. It was his idea and then we were able to manipulate it together. But having
too much control is a bit like letting a gambler loose with your credit card. So a good,
strong editor in the person of Renni Browne from The Editorial Department http://
www.editorialdepartment.com/, slapped the text into a better shape than I could have
achieved on my own with total control and less distance from the text.

The hardest thing is creating publicity that reaches readers. A lot that's available
online is about writers and I wager they don't have much time to read. So it's hard to
find the people who actually consume books. But there's been an upside to that too,
meeting people like you who run these review sites and are incredibly generous with
your time, enthusiasm and help.

4. What advice do you have for aspiring writers, especially self-published writers?

If you're going to self-publish, make sure the text is edited and line-edited. It has to
compete against professionally prepared books and whilst these also have formatting
and editing problems, you have to do better than best. The cover design is vital and
the set-up of the novel. Because of the way the sample chapters works, format the
novel so it starts immediately. You want people to read as much as possible of the
novel and get hooked to buy it. There's no point having a Gwyneth Paltrow Oscar

speech thanking all and sundry in the opening - whilst all that is great, put it in the
rear of the book. You don't want people reading it in the sample chapters.

Also the good thing about e-publishing is that it's a long haul. You're not going to get
pulped for lack of sales so be prepared to make adjustments to the marketing along
the way as you learn. And "forge every stream" as it were; make as many contacts as

5. What three books would you take with you on a deserted island?

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - words as sustenance.
Thus Spake Zarathustra by Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche - for comic relief
And something on wound care in the wild.


Mr. Johnston has graciously offered to giveaway one ebook copy of Consumption!!! I'm very excited to give away a copy of this book.

- You must be 13 and over
-  Open internationally
- You must be a follower of A Bookish Affair
- Giveaway ends October 18! 
Just fill out this really simple form and you're entered! 

The Other Details:

Website address - www.gsjohnston.com
Amazon.com - http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0052YX8K8


Hi! Welcome to A Bookish Affair. If you leave a comment, I will try to either reply here or on your site!

As of 6/6/2011, this book is now an awards free zone. While I appreciate the awards, I would rather stick to reviewing more great books for you than trying to fill the requirements.

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