The New X Author

Originally posted on the Xchyler Publishing blog, Saturday, May 25, 2013

The New Author Experience: Scott the New X Author—definitely not Scott the Marketing Guy

Today marks the first in an ongoing series of blog posts from Scott the new X author—a very different personna from Scott the X Marketing Guy.

I can speak from authority on all things Marketing—well, kinda sorta, since we’re in the process of inventing all sorts of new marketing stuff to go with The X’s new and different publishing paradigm—but not so much as an author.  In that arena, I’m brand new. Green as grass.

So, what I’ll be doing between now and the publication of Diamond Jubal,  my steampunk treatment of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, on December 1st, is to put down for posterity, (i.e., the other new X authors and wannabe X authors), my experience of the X editorial, graphics, and even marketing processes from the other side of the table.

It will be an occasional series, not weekly by any means, but when I can shoe-horn it in between actual writing, marketing, and Making My Wife Happy (no priority ranking implied, Honey.)

My wife, Jewels, and I are co-authors, did our submission just the same as everybody else, and went through the agony of waiting just like everybody else.

The X difference in that process is that you’re waiting for someone—several someones as a matter of fact—to decide they’re willing to gamble their personal time on your story, your skills, their ability to bring your skills up to publishable-grade, and/or a combination of all three.

At The X, it’s not just about some slush-pile reader being willing to gamble their employer’s money. It’s about several people being willing to gamble their time, which is money.

Ultimately, McKenna Gardner decided to roll the dice. (Penny Freeman, in what was either an act of perspicacious nepotism avoidance, or extreme cowardice, demurred.) [editor’s note: the latter]

So McKenna will be our “content editor”.  She will be the one tearing apart what is, of course, the most carefully-constructed outline in the history of novel outlines. She will be the one tightening, toning, cheerleading,  organizing, and hand-holding.

McKenna and Penny, let it be said, are sisters from different generations. They laugh and joke and have a good time, and then excoriate bad or lazy or just plain thoughtless writing without rancor, without tiptoeing, and without mercy.

Already our writing skills—particularly the planning of writing—have improved dramatically, and Jubal will be the stronger for it . . . and McKenna hasn’t even gotten her blue pencil on it yet.

Next time, I’ll tell you all about the exercises. Not for the faint of heart. After that, all about the Big Manila Envelope—also not for the faint of heart, but in a good way.


The Old Guy Author Scott Tarbet divides his time between his BBQ catering business, marketing for The X, writing, and his family. He and his child bride, Julie, live in Salt Lake City, UT, where they dote on their 12 (going on 13) grandchildren. Scott and Julie’s delightful steampunk adventure, Diamond Jubal, will be released December 1, 2013.

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