Indie Rambles #6 – My Troll Bridge to Publication

The publishing world is changing by the second. No one can predict what will happen next. What worked for publishers yesterday, won’t necessarily work tomorrow. There are no rules, no sure things. As Sean Platt said in one SP podcast, it’s a bit like trying to walk over a bridge as you build it.

I agree, except my bridge has a giant troll underneath it. As I place two bricks on the bridge, he scratches one away. His name is Uncertainty. You know him. He lurks in the shadows of our lives scraping away at our confidence with his razor sharp claws. He whispers, “You can’t do that…” I tried to draw him in action, but I couldn’t capture his evilness.

Mostly, he gets in the way. I told him to get lost and in the daylight he mostly does.

Beware of trolls, my friends.

Now, Elizabeth Gilbert would say my fear is boring, because we all have those fears. But I say–it’s real.

Other News…

I’m Making my own Audio Clip

Using  free software called Audacity, I’m creating an audio file of a chapter of Covert Danger. 

I’ve read stories out loud for years, but never into a microphone. Boy, do I need to practice. The sound of my breathing adds a nasty hiss to my words, kind of like the creepy-guy who stalks women for fun. Not the effect I’m looking for.

It’s a fun project. I’ll be putting the clip in my November newsletter as a special treat for my followers. (See below if you want to become one.)

Book I –  is off to my Copy Editor in Australia

Covert Danger‘s now in the hands of Philip, my copy editor. I’m looking forward to his edits. I chose him, because I really liked his sample edit, he responds to my emails and he’s affordable. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Joanne Levy’s Marketing Spreadsheet

I downloaded an awesome excel spreadsheet for marketing (I heard about at the Nationals). It cost $15.00. You can find it by going here.

Website Reno

I decided to do a “reno” of my website. With my new cover and my branding message I created a clearer picture of my writing. I think. Check it out:

Blog Traffic

People aren’t leaving many likes or comments, but I have to tell  you, they are visiting me. My last post had 199 hits on the first day and generated great discussion on the Sisters in Crime, Guppy writer’s loop. I think they wanted to keep their discussion in-house, so to speak. They debated the merits of series vs stand alones, and whether rules that apply to other genres effect mystery.

How About You?

Are you on a first name basis with any trolls? Do you have any indie tales to tell this week? Love to hear from you.


Newsletter Contest Reminder

If you’re interested in receiving my newsletter click here to sign up. At the end of October one subscriber’s name will be drawn for a ten dollar Amazon gift card. My November edition will name the winner and have a blurb and an audio clip from Covert Danger, the first book in my Mata Hari series launching April 1st.


Author: Jo-Ann Carson

About Jo-Ann Carson Where magic happens … Reports of Jo-Ann Carson’s death on a Gulf Island are greatly exaggerated or, at the very least, premature. The eclectic crew of ghosts that haunt her head spill onto the page in two series: The Gambling Ghosts and The Ghost & Abby Mysteries. A Viking with existential issues, a broken hearted Highlander, a Casanova man-witch and a Pirate with a secret are just a few of the males her strong heroines encounter in tales of fantasy, adventure and romance. A firm believer in the magic of our everyday lives, Jo-Ann loves watching sunrises, walking beaches near her home in the Pacific Northwest and reading by the fire. You can visit her on social media: Website * Blog * Twitter * Facebook

19 thoughts on “Indie Rambles #6 – My Troll Bridge to Publication”

  1. I’m just so in awe of all you’re doing, Jo-Ann! I’d love to do the audio thing. 🙂 I’m a pretty good reader. I should look into that. Is there a way I could hear you and give you pointers? (Though I bet you really don’t need many.) Could I put something like that into a blog post? I don’t get how you’re putting it in your newsletter. Guess, I’m going to have to bite the bullet on that, too. But I generally don’t open other people’s newsletters. I have all the info form FB, Twitter and blogs. So, see I just talked myself out of the newsletter. LOL


    1. Hi Marsha
      I’m really new in the audio world. What I’m doing right now is reading into a little mike attached to headphones and creating an audio file. Easy-peasy. I need to learn how to convert it to MP3 because I think (as opposed to know) that that format is more universal.
      I’m working on my annunciation. You know, the regular practice thing. When I get the file to a quality I’m ready to share I’ll email it to you. I’d love your feedback. Thanks for that offer.
      I’m not going to get fancy with background music etc. It’s too much to do and I’d rather write.
      Still, like you, I’ve had the experience of holding rooms filled with children spellbound by nothing more than my voice. It’s cool. It’s fun. It’s my new project.
      I’m excited that you are going ahead with a boxed set. I wish I had a book ready for it. Maybe in the future.
      Thanks for stopping by and chatting.

      That being said, when I hear my voice on a tape, it sounds much weaker than I imagined.


    1. Hi Marsha
      What new web site? I’m confused. But I have been wondering if there’s problems with commenting on this blog, so please let me know.
      Thanks. You are an awesome writing buddy.
      Best always


      1. No new web site by renovated. I decided to do a “reno” of my website. With my new cover and my branding message I created a clearer picture of my writing. I think. Check it out: When I clicked on the link above, I got an oops message. Will try copying it into a new…whatever that word is. LOL Oh, I definitely want to do a boxed set with you, Jo-Ann. My 3rd book, SECOND CHANCES will be out in winter 2015. Now that Jan/Feb to me, but maybe March to my e-publisher. 🙂 I’ll bring out print at same time. You’re April 1. Think we can pull this off. Just need to find a couple others. 🙂 Now off to try another whatever that is. 🙂


      2. Hi Marsha
        I’m new at all this. I need to get my titles out first, mess around a little with pricing and then box set, so that’s a ways down the road. I know if I take on too much at once, I’ll drop the ball or balls, or books…or whatever. But you go ahead. I can join you after you’ve done a set or two.
        the slower one


      3. Jo-Ann, you have a link in the article for but it actually loops back to your blog (hover over it and you’ll see the URL), but there’s a typo of something in it and you get an error. Maybe you can fix the original post?

        Meanwhile, I love the idea and image of a troll under the bridge. That is what it feels like sometimes. The website is uncluttered and it’s easy find things. Nicely done. I like the idea of a podcast of a chapter or excerpt. As you say, it takes practice, but should draw more readers over time.

        Best of luck.


      4. Claire
        Thanks for the heads-up on my technical glitch. I fixed the link.
        And… thank you for your kind words.
        Best Wishes


    1. Hi Pat
      It may be a huge messy belly-flop, but what the heck. I won’t know unless I try.
      Thanks for stopping by.


  2. Hi Jo-ann I’m very impressed with the audio idea, unfortunately I’m horrible at reading aloud, lol. I wish ACX was available for Canada, I always come away feeling like a second class citizen, 🙂 I was scared also about publishing, just remember you’re an awards finalist!! Stay positive, my friend, it’ll all come out in the wash, 🙂


  3. Hi Jo-Ann

    I’m pretty sure you won’t be belly-flopping anytime soon. From what I can see you’re way more prepared than I am now and I can’t wait to read the books you’ve written. I’m suspecting that I’ll learn a lot from you since you really are learning a lot about indie publishing even before you dip your toe in.

    Take care



    1. Hi Pat
      It’s good to know I have a fan. You’re awesome. Sorry to hear you’re missing tomorrow’s meeting.


    1. Hi Jacqui
      Thanks for your sweet words. I’m gathering armor to battle him as I move forward. Missed you yesterday at our meeting.
      Best Wishes


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