Creative income streams as a creative | Episode 018 transcript

This is the transcript for Episode 018 | Creative income streams as a creative with Stephanie Hornsby. In it, we talk about finding freelance work, selling face-to-face, and still a lot of pirates. Visit this post for show notes.

Jack: Alright everybody I hope you’re still there because we still are. It is time to get to art. I’m as always your favourite host, the most handsome, the most talented Jennifer Roach.

Jennifer: I was about to say I’m… I think I’m the most favourite and the most handsome.

Jack: As always I’m the world’s funniest indie author and I’m joined by my lovely first wife, Jennifer.

Jennifer: The world’s not funniest wedding photographer from Atlanta.

Jack: I don’t know. You get a few laughs.

Jennifer: Yeah, I get them to laugh at me when I’m trying to I guess.

Jack: And we are joined once again by Stephanie. Stephanie say hello.

Stephanie: Hello! Glad to be back.

Jack: Now guys before we get started I have another book review I want to read to you, “The Comeback Kid has the job that I want or at least the wit for the job. If you could take Sam Spade and Al Jaffee and crossed them you would have this character. It is a good read several laugh out loud sections. This is pure entertainment.”

Jennifer: Gone with the Wind.

Jack: Yes.

Jennifer: Awesome.

Jack: And you can buy Gone with the Wind by going to, that’s Don’t be confused because it’s going to come up with a link that says Naan of Your Business by Jack Roach. Just go ahead and click “Buy Now” maybe three or four copies. It will be all set. Alright, so that’s enough making enough money for me. Stephanie let’s talk about how you make money.

Stephanie: Alright, you got them.

Jack: I’ve asked you back again because you have done what so many people are trying to do which is make money through your creativity.

Stephanie: Yes, so I started with writing my own stuff for a while but I realized that in order to do this full-time which is really what I wanted to do is write full-time I was going to have to find another means of income and that is when I found ghostwriting. I actually never heard of ghostwriting before but believe it or not this came up on an aptitude test for me.

Jack: Really?

Stephanie: It did. So I went to school for English, no surprise there. And also got certified for education but I knew even then when I was doing education wasn’t really my calling. And so after graduation I was kind of in this very brief funk where I was trying to find a job. I went to a family friend and applied to work as an intern and he was so awesome. He just went to me and said, “You know work in the insurance so I am not going to hire you.” And I was like, “What? No, I really need a job.” And he pulled out this really awesome career assessment like it looks into different parts of your personality, your values, your interest and what you are already qualified to do and says, hey here are some cool ideas you might not have considered. The group is called Career Dimensions. It is amazing and I would recommend anyone look into it and who is looking into starting a new career and it came up with about 30 different results for me and surprised it was all like writer, journalist, author, but ghostwriter popped up on that. And after doing a little bit of research and I learned kind of what that was all about I booked my first client actually within a week. It was crazy and it just go through there.

Jack: Stephanie, how many times have you won the lottery?

Stephanie: Never.

Jack: I guess going around and get a job. I guess I’ll make one.

Stephanie: That’s pretty much what I did. I started my own business. This was back in 2014 kind of the end of the year. It was the holiday season so it was a great time. I started it was just strictly word of mouth at first. A lot of people in around town had known me as the pirate lady for so long. Everyone knew I already wrote books so I just kind of put the word out there and said, “Hey, I want to start writing books for other people. You can hire me.” So I pick a few clients here and there and help some authors who’d already had some work, They were in the process of doing that through different events I’ve done in the past and I help them finish their works. Finally, I went online started promoting myself there and one website for really any freelancer because this is a freelance position whether you are a creative freelancer or something different. But that great is Upwork, U-P-W-O-R-K. They are kind of the name for freelancing online these days. The websites takes a few chunk of your earnings but it is really worth it if you stick in it, the longer you are with the website, the more they promote you on their website. That’s why I get probably a good 60% of my clients.

Jack: So who are your clients? Who’s your typical client?

Stephanie: Well, there’s really two different types of clients I worked with. My favourite to work with are independent authors. Those are the ones I usually get through word of mouth. I find them on Upwork on occasion. But those are the people who really want to write, really have a cool story to tell, they either just don’t have the skillset or the time and so it’s really fun collaboration kind of thing where we are bouncing cool ideas off each other. We are improving the ideas they already have and we are creating something really cool out of it. The other client I have would be a publisher. So they are a publishing companies who actually will hire people too write under the same pen name. I obviously can’t use an actual pen name as an example on disclosure agreement.

Jack: Let’s say Jack Roach.

Stephanie: Okay, let’s say Jack Roach. Let’s say Jack Roach doesn’t actually exist.

Jack: Oh no!

Stpehanie: So if say Jack Roach doesn’t really exist and instead of you writing a book a year they hire like 20 writers to knock out a bunch of books really fast and they just published all of them under the same pen name. And it helps publishing companies get off the ground so you see there’s a lot with NB Publishing or Vanity Press. And they hire ghoswriters to put a bunch of books out for them very very quickly and they get to take all of the royalties as opposed to me I get a flat rate as a ghostwriter.

Jack: So interesting you are talking about fiction because I assumed you’re going say non-fiction.

Stpehanie: Well, I have done a few non-fiction works but I try to avoid it because it is just not what I like doing. You could probably make a lot more money doing non-fiction in the ghoswriting world. Wouldn’t have to do as many projects as I do in order to make this a full-time job. A lot of people do writing, software writing, get on the computers and do content writing for websites. These are all under the category of ghostwriting. I specialize in fiction as well as memoirs for my clients so I help people write their life stories.

Jack: Just to get some context for what I just said and I’m going to speak to you Jennifer. Most of the time when I hear ghostwriting it is like a businessman who wants to establish credibility and so he’ll hire a ghostwriter to write a book about his sales something like that.

Jennifer: Yeah, and similar to that the way that I’ve heard of it most often is a celebrity having a ghostwriter like they want to write their memoirs or their autobiography or whatever that they’ll have a ghostwriter write it. And I was actually about to say just a second ago when you were talking about all of the different writers all coming together and writing all under the same pen name for the one publishing house and I’ve heard. I don’t know how true this is but I believe that that’s how the Sweet Valley High books were written was that they were all Francine Pascal wrote the first one then all the rest of them were all ghostwritten.

Stephanie: That’s certainly possible. I couldn’t tell you for sure with that particular series. But I will say that I have written for some celebrities before and I have written some business books for people. That’s always good for money honestly. But for regular income the publishing company is the way to go. It was getting in depth with publishing companies who can give you regular work and that’s really the key to making this a full-time position where you’re not worried about whether or not you’re going to make income next month.

Jack: Let me tell you about my intersection with that being as probably 4th grade I had to write a letter to an author that I like. And so as a big Hardy Boys fan I wrote a letter to Franklin W. Dixon. I believe that’s his name. And I got a letter back from the publisher saying, “Thank you for your kind words for Mr. Dixon. We will relay to him. We’re glad you’re a fan.” You know, just kind of a generic form letter. Look it up later, the dude has been dead for like 20 years when I wrote that letter and I mean other people had been writing the series.

Stephanie: Yes, I think that’s a really where ghostwriters for fiction came about is series like that for really, really popular and eventually someone else takes on the project when a writer passes away and continues the story.

Jack: Did you hear about the controversy that happened with ghostwriters a month or two ago.

Stephanie: No. What happened?

Jack: It was in the indie world and the big thing in the indie world is rapid publishing. We are talking about people putting out a book a month which I think is insane. But ghostwriters come into it and there was a woman who got sued because her book was plagiarized, man, is it Nora Jones or Nora Roberts, which one is the writer? Yes, Nora Roberts. So they discovered that this indie woman’s book has passages lifted straight out of Nora Robert’s books. And she turned around and said, I don’t know, it wasn’t me. It was this ghostwriter I hired in Brazil or something.

Jennifer: Oh wow!

Stpehanie: Yes, that is a problem I’ve heard about happening. My publishers send everything through plagiarism websites so they can track everything. So that was probably just some oversight on the publisher’s part that might not had been sent through. Because a lot of my clients come to me with this sort of problems. The thing about freelancing websites which is where like I said I get a lot of my clients is anybody can join those websites. For me my profile looks a little better because I have an English background and because I have reviews by my client like on there and then I have a track record built up so that gets people’s attention on the websites who are already been there when you are using this sort of freelance websites. I can’t tell you how many time I’ve had clients come to me because they’ve had someone who says I am a ghostwriter but really they have no experience or they are not reliable. So you really when hiring a ghostwriter you want to look into their profile and what their expertise is and what they’ve done in the past.

Jack: So you also do editing?

Stpehanie: I do. It is the same sort of thing. I just edit as a freelancer so it’s again word of mouth and through those various freelancing websites.

Jack: Editing of course can mean a lot of different things. What kind of editing do you do? Are we talking copyediting, developmental editing?

Stpehanie: I am a one stop shop for that sort of thing. I will go through and proofread meaning that I’ll check for grammar and spelling errors if that’s what you need. I will do line editing meaning I will go line by line and make your book sound better. I will do full fledge content editing where I will move things around and bounce back and forth with you and make you rewrite what sounds best because it is just not working. I do a little bit of beta reading. I try not to present myself as an expert beta reader. I’m still learning that and really just any sort of editing that someone might need. I’m happy to step in. I’ve also done author advisement which is not only that’s what I call it which is for someone who can send me their book and for a small flat rate I can just read it and grant them my opinion as a opposed to doing the full fledge edit and that kind of helps people save a little bit of money but still getting an expert’s opinion on their work and what needs to be done for it.

Jack: You don’t have to get into broad details but how much the services cost? Let’s say I’ve got an 80,000 word novel.

Stpehanie: For editing or for ghostwriting?

Jack: Editing.

Stpehanie: Okay, so the first thing I would do is just kind of skim and see how much what type of editing it needs. You are just looking for a proofread it is going to be anywhere between $2.50 and $4 for every 250 words. So let’s see, math, I an English grad. Yeah, I’m pulling out the calculator so you could spend around $1,200 for an 80,000 word novel just for a proofread which isn’t bad because I don’t recommend honestly doing too detailed of a proofread especially if you are already hooked up with a publisher because a lot of publishing companies are going to have their own proofreaders. You want somebody to look at it and go through make sure you’ve got something neat to put to the publisher beforehand. But a detailed proofreading is not really necessary. For someone who already has a publishing company I recommend a good content reader. But again, if you already have a publishing company you probably already have that available for you.

Jack: What about for the independent author who doesn’t?

Stpehanie: So for the independent author a content editor is a really good idea. The very least you want to like an author advisement is to have somebody professional who is in the industry and look at your work and tell you what you can do to make it better and to make it actually catch attention of a literally agent or a publishing firm.

Jack: Okay, and how much do you think that would run?

Stpehanie: So for 80,000 words it is like $3,200 and that’s like at the high end I would say.

Jack: So again you don’t have to answer on too personal level but are you making a full time salary doing this free work, not free work, freelance work or you’re contributing the groceries or what are we talking about?

Stpehanie: Before I had a child I was definitely working, making full-time pay. I’ve cut back a lot since my little man was born. I’m still contributing fairly well for the household income. I can say my husband covers our bills. I cover groceries, gas, food, clothes, any extra curriculars, eating out like everything outside of the mortgage. So I would say I’m doing pretty well.

Jack: Yeah.

Jennifer: That’s awesome because I think that’s probably like a level that a lot of people that are listening to this podcast aspire to get to. You know, this podcast is mainly for people who are just starting their creative careers. You know, that’s a level that they aspire too.

Stpehanie: I’ve reached the average medium income for writers so I think that’s pretty good.

Jennifer: Yeah, I think that you’re probably #goals for a lot of people right now.

Stpehanie: Thank you. I hope other people will get on board and realize that it is certainly possible that do this sort of creative work. It takes a lot of sacrifice early on. I certainly did not start here like I said started doing this winter 2014. Here we are at 2019 I’m finally at a point where I’m like, whoo, I’m doing alright. I’m actually making a career out of it.

Jennifer: Yeah, years ago when I started staying at home with our oldest daughter who is now 13.

Jack: What?

Jennifer: You forget how…

Jack: Our baby is 13?

Jennifer: Yeah, she is 13. Can you believe it? But one point she was like cute little 2-year old and I was staying at home with her. I too have an English degree and I’ve felt like that freelance proofreading and editing was something that I could be good at and something that I could do from while I was staying at home with her. But this was 2007, 2008. I can’t remember it. Around that time and it wasn’t really a thing yet so it was hard to find someone. Also the recession was going on at that time too so like a lot of places where cutting what they felt like was a necessary and they were cutting editors and proofreaders and that kind of thing because like everybody was broke. So I had a super hard time finding anyone who would let me edit or proofread for them so for someone who is out there and it is a much bigger market I feel like now. I’m not looking to be in it anymore now you can get in it. For someone who is out there and thinking this might be an option for them what would you suggest for them to look into getting into freelance editing or freelance ghostwriting. Like how would they find their first client?

Stpehanie: Their first client is going to be in their friends and family circle because even if you go to one of these freelance websites like Upwork and you create yourself a profile and even if you have a bunch of background like an education background that caters to that you’re still going to want some sort of reference, some sort of project that you can display for your client. So for me I know my first client was definitely a friend of a friend type thing, so and so is working on a book and you are going to kind of bite the bullet earlier on right in. Like for me with doing fiction I had to write genres that I wasn’t really fond of, and I had to take lower pay because people just didn’t know me. They didn’t know me as a ghostwriter, and eventually I’ve built up my portfolio on Upwork and people could see the reviews. People could see that my clients are always satisfied by the time they are finish with the project with me and that got the attention of Upwork. I am actually considered one of their top 10% freelancers now which means my stuff us showing up in people’s search engine first when they type in ghostwriter, when they type in editor they are going to see my face before anyone else is because I built up a trust organization through Upwork.

Jennifer: Yeah, so simply not going to be an overnight thing for anyone who’s looking to maybe add this to their streams of income.

Stpehanie: No, it’s definitely not overnight because independent authors early on are very helpful if you have friends and family who and just acting around and putting out there and like hey, “Tell me if you know someone who’s writing a book. I’ll get them a deal because you’re friends”, or whatever it is you got to do to get those first people in the door. And then when you’re on those freelancing websites is it’s all about making your client happy so they do that nice review at the end and just kind of starting with the grunge work, starting with those projects you might not be as interested in so that you keep showing up on people’s search engines on those websites when people type in ghostwriter. At first, you would not be able to find my name. There’s a hundred other ghostwriters on that website and if you type in ghostwriter, the chances of someone falling down to page ten and seeing me when they go to higher was very unlikely. So I put in lower bids early on. I had really good samples of my work for people to view on my profile. That were just my personal project because I didn’t have a lot of projects I’d work on for other people at that point. I also provided a non disclosure agreement contract. I had a lawyer to look at and create for me so that was very appealing to some of my people coming out who were like independent and just wanted to make sure they have some sort of contract so the fact that I can provide one was a plus. But just working really hard on building that portfolio and building that profile up it work up with higher paying jobs and more consistent work and when you finally get like I said one of those publishers who can offer you regular pay and there’s a lot more of them out there than you would think especially those indie publishers.

Jennifer: Yeah, that’s awesome. I think that is really good advice. I feel like we creatives really use that well of our friends and family to get started not just for ghostwriting or editing but for really beating that takes clients or anything is. Your friends or family, it’s going to be pretty much the first person that you get. My first “session” for something I ever did if you could call it that was Jack’s sister’s maternity session when she’s pregnant with her first child though, she was my first session when I was getting into photography years ago and so then like I finally had pictures of another person that I could put up on my pages and start getting paid work.

Stpehanie: Exactly having the samples really help. A lot of my original samples were just stuff that I wrote to be samples, people didn’t have to know that, and I was like hey this is a little clip from a book that I wrote but it’s really just a sample in a genre that someone was interested in. Being prepared to have stuff and a bunch of different genres to show people was very beneficial to me. I think that some of my earliest stuff that I did to prepare that profile was I just wrote a bunch of little two to three page snippet as though they were from like completed work I had done for myself. Obviously I never presented it as hey I did this work for a client. I presented it as hey this is a sample I wrote in this genre and it got people’s attention.

Jack: Jennifer that sounds a lot like styled shoots.

Jennifer: It does. It does sound a lot like styled shoots kind of think of it.

Jack: Now I hope you two ladies are sitting down because I’m about to hit you with the world’s greatest segway.

Jennifer: Okay.

Jack: Stephanie, how would you say that this freelancing work has help improve your fiction writing craft?

Stpehanie: Well, I write everyday now. That’s probably the biggest thing is with my ghostwriting I cannot let a day to go by where I’m not writing otherwise I will miss my deadlines. And deadline in this business is a really terrible idea. Because if I don’t get my books out to my clients, they can’t get their books to their editor, if they can’t get their book to their editor, they miss their publishing deadline and so it’s just a disaster. So having to write everyday just keep my skill very sharp. Also I have been introduce to genres and styles of writing that I never thought I would have done before and so it’s fully expanded what I’m able to do and how I’m able to write.

Jack: Let’s talk about Reverse Harem Romance.

Stpehanie: What, no.

Jack: I came across that and I was like, oh wow.

Stpehanie: Yeah that’s the thing.

Jack: It’s lovely. You guys have gotten wild out there.

Stpehanie: Yes, remember how I said in those early days that I had to write genres I didn’t like.

Jack: So for people who weren’t familiar, why don’t you tell them real quickly what the Reverse Harem is.

Stpehanie: No, really, I’m going to leave that to you Jack.

Jennifer: It’s pretty much what it sounds like, I think.

Jack: It is a genre of a romance writing in which a female character is presented with you know multiple potential partners and says basically why not both and just keeps all of them.

Stpehanie: Yup.

Jack: It’s fantastic.

Stpehanie: Yeah, I stir clear of the romance genre these days. They’ve gotten a little too crazy for me.

Jack: I had never read a romance novel before but a couple months ago one came cross in the newsletter and it was you know describe this very funny and as it, you know I’ve been meaning to pick up a romance. I like funny stuff, I’m going to give this one a read so I got off to Amazon and I read through it. It was the filthiest thing I’ve ever read in my life. And I grew up as a teenager sneaking dad’s pants, leather collection from his closet.

Stpehanie: No, yeah. I stir clear that these days.

Jennifer: I wonder where the line is now between romance and erotica.

Stpehanie: It’s very blur.

Jennifer: Like what is fiction romance and what is just straight up porn.

Jack: That seems like a great topic for another episode.

Stpehanie: Don’t invite me back for that episode.

Jack: But back to Stephanie. So Stephanie, so we’ve talked about what we kind of sarcastically call your day job because I’m sure you’re only do this writing and editing between nine to five. But let’s talk about how you make your money of your fiction books.

Stpehanie: Okay, so in addition to ghost writing, my first love was always my own stuff so that I’m also an author. My fiction books Pirate: The Unkindly Gentlemen, Pirate II: Ace of Spade, Pirate III: Shift in the Tides, Pirate IV: Worlds Apart and Pirate V: Kirkston United are all out now and that one more in the series coming up. I do a lot of events surrounding my book series that I think are probably little more unusual from your typical author. Something I found out very early on when I was first publishing, I started publishing when I was seventeen, was that bookstores don’t really do it for me. I’ve remember some of my early book signing sitting there and people would come in and they are like oh there was an author here and they pick up and they look at my book and they’ve seem really interested and then they go and get what they came in the store to get and walk out. And I think that is because nowadays when people go into a bookstore, there’s not as much browsing space to read and people go into the bookstore and they get what they came to get and then they leave. And so the bookstore thing wasn’t really helping because when I was sitting in there for book signing, I’m competing with all of these much more well known authors who were just have their books sitting on the shelves. So I kind of got a way, I still do a book signing at a bookstore every once in awhile but I got away from that. And I think that was one of the better decisions that I ever made. You and I actually met at a festival.

Jack: Yes. It was at Memorial Day? Was it Memorial Day?

Stpehanie: It was Senoia’s Memorial Day Festival and Parade. And you know what? I was the only writer there.

Jack: Yes, as we were walking down the line and there was you know somebody’s selling t-shirt, and someone selling little row, a woman selling a bunch of pirate books, somebody’s selling 14K silver.

Stpehanie: Exactly. I do a lot of festivals. I’ve just found that for one thing people who come to festivals with a bunch of tents set up are prepared to spend some money, because they’re there to buy arts, or shop, browse. Selling a book at a festival kind a makes people go, “Wait a minute this is different.” I have a very outgoing personality so I’m not afraid to go up and talk to people like hey come talk to me. I do all sorts of little gimmick that are very pirate themed to get people’s attention. You guys saw my booth. I had a pirate flag, and a pirate treasure chest, full of toys for the kids to come pick out a little gold coin and had little games and free face paintings set up. So the festivals are really awesome but that’s not all I do. I also go to schools on occasion and I’ll speak up I think because I was such a young author. I started writing when I was eleven years old the Pirate series and I publish in high school. I go to schools a lot to talk to kids about creativity in writing and careers and to start your career off really young. I stay in touch with that creative writing club at my old high school. As the matter of fact some of my ghostwriters who work under me have come out of that so I go back and speak every year. I do search event, I’ve done book signings at museums and hotels, all sorts of crazy stuff. I’ve even done a book signing on a pirate ship. Who would have thought? I do that almost annually actually.

Jack: But I’m confused, you’re supposed to just put your books up on Amazon and start cashing the checks.
Stpehanie: You know what I would really wish with my work.

Jennifer: That would be nice wouldn’t it?

Stpehanie: It would be so nice. I hardly make any sales that way. I do make a few through Amazon maybe like two or three a year. No, that’s a little low. But, yeah most of my sales are going to be from me doing the grunge work and going to events and trying out new things. Pirate festivals are always a blast. I think knowing your own book. I know one author he wrote a book about his time in the navy. He did this little tour and he went to a bunch of like navy museums and had his signing at different military events because you know that makes sense. So for me I go to places where I think my readers would be and since I write young adult fiction, one place that I love going to, I love going to Dragon Con and with a backpack full of books every year.

Jennifer: Oh that is hard.

Jack: That’s coming up.

Stpehanie: That is coming up and I’m super pumped. My husband is going to cosplay with me this year.

Jack: You know what I have actually never been Dragon Con.

Stpehanie: Whoo! It’s culture shock.

Jennifer: Like every year you say you’re going to go and then something comes up and then you wouldn’t go.

Jack: Well, every year I found out it was this weekend so like ah maybe next weekend.

Jennifer: Yeah, we always miss it.

Stpehanie: Oh, you all should consider going. The day to go is Saturday when they have the parade and when they have all the celebrity meet and greet, and it’s a blast.

Jack: You can watch the parade on TV.

Stpehanie: You could but I can’t sell my books on my couch.

Jennifer: Yeah. There you go.

Jack: If only.

Stpehanie: If only… if only.

Jack: But what’s your saying is that you have found much more financial success in your book sales by literally going out and pounding the pavement.

Stpehanie: I have. I don’t know if that’s the same for everyone. I hear people telling me how they promote themselves online, they get people the right reviews. People have written reviews for me before but it hasn’t really done much. I’ve always appreciate the review because it does make my book pop up more online in people’s search engine when they start typing in like pirate this or pirate that. But for me even if I go to a book signing and I don’t sell a single book but I make a connection that is the difference for me. I have book marks with information on my books that I can give out to people; I have business cards the lore that I’m always ready to hand out you a teacher, you might want me to come and speak to her class or to maybe someone who does a podcast, hey. Or who just ever might be that can help further my goals as a writer. I’m ready to jump on and say yes to whatever it might be.

Jennifer: And that’s a really good advice to just get out there. It’s not always just about the sales that you make at that time but it’s about making these connections with people because yeah you might be out there selling some books at that moment but you know you’re also meeting people that may not buy a book from you right then but might refer you to someone else that they know likes pirates stuff and they are going like, oh well, hey you should check out this book because I met this person and she writes pirate books or how we met you at the festival when we’re doing this podcast and we’d thought that you’ll be a good for it or just anything like that you are out there making connections with people that doesn’t necessarily mean making a sale at that moment but it could lead to more future sales.

Stpehanie: Exactly and another thing is I will say is never underestimate the value of giving away your books for free. If I could go back in time and slot myself, I would never do that. When I was younger and could you have they cost money to print and to ship and I would not do that. But now I’ve gotten aware I will allow myself to hand out a couple of free book every once in awhile with someone who might be able to connect me with someone else or even just occasionally to young child who’s going to play to school and tell his friends or his teacher. I got this free book from this author. She told me to tell my teacher about her, she put a business card inside my book and she gave this to me and it’s awesome and she said if I came up to school she’ll donate one to the library at our school- whatever it might be. Or just to another author I always do book exchange with other authors that I run into this things. I switch books, you take mine I take yours. I’ll set your book out at one of my signings if you will do the same for me.

Jennifer: Yeah, that’s smart.

Stpehanie: One of my more successful events. I set eyes and I kind of contradict myself here a little bit. Say that one of the problems with going to bookstore is that I’m in competition with every single other book in that shop. But one of my more successful events is my author events. So in more than one occasion, I think I’ve done this twice, I’ve plan to do it again soon, is I’ve called up a lot of indie authors I’ve met over the years and we’ve done a group signing. These go over so well because the last one I did I invited twenty other authors and we went to the Holliday-Dorsey-Fife Museum in Fayetteville. The museum helped promote the event. I just went and spoke with the curator over there about it. And they helped promote the event and then each of these twenty authors were also promoting the event to their friends and family and we did I sign an auction, everyone made their own little basket full of just little bangs. I think I did a movie basket. So we promoted it as a silent auction and authors gathering and what happens there is really amazing. So all my friends and family already had my book, but I got like fifteen to come to this event for me who bought books from all of these other authors. Well, these 19 other authors also got ten, five, twenty people to come to this event for them and they already owned their book. So it says mom I’m already have ten copies of their book but they are now in this event where they have to hangout for an hour and browse all of this other author’s books. And since we’re not competing with a giant bookstore but just 19 other authors we’re helping each other out. We’re talking to each other, we’re making connection with other authors to might know about other book signing locations they could go to that they’ve done well, give each other advice, mingling, networking, and of course being in the room full of their friends and family who were also going to want to support other local authors who are going to buy books.

Jennifer: That’s really cool. That’s a really smart idea. Jack you should get into something like that.

Jack: Yes Stephanie, call me for the next one.

Stpehanie: I will call you for the next one Jack. I’ll let you know. It’s been a couple years since my last one but we had so much fun. We even did a speaking segment. I was very ambitious with that last one. I was actually pregnant during the last one we did…

Jennifer: Oh wow.

Stpehanie: We had a different people come in and they spoke so they’ve did a Q and A session upstairs about. I did a speaking portion forward about ghostwriting and starting a writing business someone else did a marketing session where they talk about marketing yourself and just differenct stuff that authors or anyone who came to the events might be interested in. It was really good. I think I walked home with about twenty different books because my husband bought a copy for like every author who was there. We were hoping would happen for everybody so their friends and family were buying copies of my book. We also sat at two authors at each table and so I saw a lot of hey if you buy her book I’ll give you mine half off.

Jack: Well, I tell you what. We’ll do it the month after Dragon Con.

Stpehanie: The month after Dragon Con?

Jack: Sure, you’ll be relax after that.

Stpehanie: That will be a good time to do it. I think we did one and we made a mistake of doing it on a super bowl weekend. Oh my goodness there was rain..

Jack: You have to call it the big game.

Stpehanie: Whatever that is.

Jack: I’m not getting sued by NBC.

Stpehanie: I didn’t even realize what it was. Where is everybody?

Jack: I think that we need to let Stephanie get to work so let’s go ahead and wrap this up.

Jennifer: Alright.

Jack: Stephanie, tell us all the different ways that people can find your stuff and give you money.

Stpehanie: Okay. Well, you can find all of my books on Amazon or really any online retail bookstore has it, Books-A-Million, Barnes and Noble, all that jazz. You can find me on Facebook, my Facebook page is S. C. Lauren, that’s my pen name and I keep all of my information on there as well as how to find my books, names of my books and any ridiculous book signing I may be doing.

Jack: Jenifer, when will your next book signing be and where can I find out about it.

Jennifer: I wish that I had a book signing coming up that would be great. You can find me on the web at and I’m on the gram @jennifermariephotographyga. Stephanie are you on the gram?
Stpehanie: I am on the gram @SCLauren

Jennifer: SCLauren, alright, because we’re going to have to tag you on all these things.

Stpehanie: Hold on, is that my name on the gram.

Jack: I go through that every week too.

Jennifer: Jack could never remember his Instagram name.

Stpehanie: Oh there it is. It is S.C.Lauren which is also my Facebook page. It is S.C.Lauren

Jack: Well we will make sure to have all the links on the show on those guys so, hit the little circle with the I in it and you can find through there. And you can find me and on Instagram @jackroachauthor, and you can find both of us at, specifically, but you can also find this on Instagram @gettoartpodcast.

Jennifer: And you can also email us at

Jack: And I tell you why guys. Stephanie really inspired me the first five people who write in. I’ll send a free copy of my book. I’ll I even sign it.

Jennifer: Oooh.

Jack: The Stephanie, we’re now going to let you go and Jenifer and I will take care of some housekeeping. Thank you so much for coming on.

Stpehanie: Thank you so much for having me. This is a blast.

Jennifer: Thanks so much for being here and hopefully we can have you back again in a future episode so we can have some more topics that you could… I feel inspired by all the things that you… I feel like I need to hop on the computer and get to work.

Jack: No, you have to get to art for one thing.

Jennifer: I think it is art not get to work.

Jack: I already told her I was inspired. You can’t just take my thing.

Jennifer: Oh whatever.

Jack: I was inspired first Stephanie.
Stpehanie: Okay. Well, if you’re inspired. I expect a book on my desk come next week Jack.

Jack: Oh email I can make that happen. Stephanie, stay in touch so I could like I said we’d love to have you back in Season 2 to talk a little bit more about multiple revenue streams and how to make money as a creative.

Stpehanie: Love to be there.

Jack: Alright, thank you.

Jennifer: Thanks again, Stephanie.

Stpehanie: Thank you.

Jack: And guys, that is going to do it for Season 1 of the Get To Art podcast.

Jennifer: Wait, are you saying that this is our season finale.

Jack: This is was our season finale.

Jennifer: We didn’t end out a cliff-hanger.

Jack: Oh no Jennifer’s dead.

Jennifer: You need to say the wrong name at the altar or something, that’s a proper season finale right there.

Jack: You’re dead. Oh no, Jennifer is a zombie.

Jennifer: Don’t stop me for making my friends reference. I’m going to make my friends reference.

Jack: And we’re going to take a whole month off for her to come up with more current pop culture references.

Jennifer: Who cares about current pop references?

Jack: This should go out around August 15th, so we’ll be back around September 15th with season two which will be centred around making money through your creative entrepreneurship so we’re going to have a lot of very specific and in depth actionable ideas. Not just hey maybe you should call some people and ask them for money. We’re going to get you some cash.

Jennifer: Yeah.

Jack: Or at least tell you how. But until then guys don’t forget everyday to sit down and get to art. Thanks for listening.

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