Friday, July 7, 2017

PUYB Virtual Book Club Chats with Joseph Bendoski, author of 'When the Sky Falls'

Joe Bendoski studied psychology in college and was fascinated by all the insights it provided into human behavior, only to realize most the information never reach people, and when it did, rarely was it in a form that allowed for practical application. He started writing non-fiction, but soon came to understand how few people read that genre and began the difficult transition into fiction writing. His non-fiction works include; the Chemistry of Attraction and the Language of Emotion. 
He worked as the head writer for the television show ‘Saved by Grace.’ After being frustrated with comments like "make this scene cheaper," "What's my motivation?", and "Do we need this scene?" he decided to go in to literature.
His latest book is the thriller/espionage/conspiracy/historical novel, When the Sky Falls.



About the Book:

Author: Joseph Bendoski
Publisher: Independent
Pages: 408
Genre: Thriller/Espionage/Conspiracy/Historical

“What makes you believe a lie? I’m not asking how you know someone is lying. What makes you believe? Because if you don’t understand how that works, then you won’t know when you’re being manipulated.”

In 1938 the War of the Worlds hoax panicked millions of Americans, then in 1988 another fictional media broadcast convinced nearly half of Portugal that sea monsters had risen from the ocean to destroy their cities. A team of CIA agents was sent to study the aftermath of this 6th Skyfall Event in the hope that they could turn it into a weapon of war. When the team consultant turns up dead, everyone scrambles to be the last man standing: the one who will decide if or when the sky falls.


Before you started writing your book, what kind of research did you do to prepare yourself?

I studied a lot of mass hysteria and group sociology as I prepared to write the book, along with a lot history involving media persuasion.

Did you pursue publishers or did you opt to self-pub?

I went indie. After I was made a very small offer and informed that I would need to develop my own platform on social media and use it to sell books, I didn’t see the need to share royalties with the publisher.

If self-published, did you hire someone to format the ebook version for you or did you do it yourself?  Can you tell us what that was like?

I just watched a YouTube video for the formatting. Honestly, Amazon’s software does most of the work.

If self-published, how did you determine the price?

At the moment, I’m keeping the price about low as I can and still get 70% royalties. The reason is that I’m an unknown author, and if people see two books by unknown authors side by side they will pick the cheaper of the two. I have set certain goals that once I reach them I will increase the price of the book.

Did you purposefully choose a distinct month to release your book?  Why?

No. I wanted to be done. I’d been working on the project for seven years. It was ready, so I released it.

How did you choose your cover?

I’ve spent a fortune on the cover and messed it up multiple times. Initially, I hired an illustrator, but when it was finished, I didn’t love it. I then tried 99 Designs, and I got the exact cover I wanted, but soon realized it was miss communicating my genre so I had two more done and this final cover is awesome, but it’s taken a long time to get here. What really worked about this final cover is that I had very little say in the early drafts. I gave the designer a one paragraph summary of the book, the title, and genre. They took it from there.

Did you write your book, then revise or revise as you went?

Both. I revise a lot as I go. I think this has a lot to do with working in a critique group. As I get feedback from them, I incorporate into the book, but I also record the alpha and beta drafts and send those out for overall feedback.

Did you come up with special swag for your book and how are you using it to help get the word out about your book?

I have planned for those things, but right now I’m focusing on the book marketing specifically. Once I have that down, I’ll move into merchandising.

Did you consider making or hiring someone to make a book trailer for your book?  If so, what’s the link?

My brother does commercials and films, so he created the trailer. Currently, I’m the one doing the narration, but my Audiobook narrator Bill Nevitt plans to do the voice over of the final draft.

What’s your opinion on giving your book away to sell other copies of your book?

I think most writers don’t like the idea of giving away their book for free. We work really hard on them, but I understand that it’s a proven method, so I’m working on prequel right now that will be a giveaway.

What are three of the most important things you believe an author should do before their book is released?

Get feedback. Make sure your cover matches your target audience. Have all your marketing ready before the launch; it’s a lot more than you expect.

What are three of the most important things you believe an author should do after their book is released?

Tweak your marketing regularly. Reach out to other authors. Know that you’ll suck at marketing in the beginning.

What kind of pre-promotion did you do before the book came out?

None. Big mistake on my part.

Do you have a long term plan with your book?

Finish off the series

What would you like to say to your readers and fans about your book?

I always wonder what people’s favorite part is. I wonder if it changed the way the watch/read the news.

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