I can’t remember how I met Ericka Clay in this land of blogging and my own personal journey to write, but it’s been a ride – and through her I’ve met a slew of other writers, bloggers and cats (she travels with them virtually). She never ceases to amaze me with her hilarity on social media, not to mention being a published novelist. I had to pin her down and ask about her latest transformation – publishing. A mother and wife as well, asking for any little bit of time was a tall order and I knew it. I did it anyway. Expect anything less? Let’s see what I found out:
Ok, so Tipsy Lit has gone through many changes recently. Was this planned? Or did you find something shimmery beneath your feet and EUREKA! You’re publishing? Share.
I definitely wanted Tipsy Lit to be in the publishing space, but I really wasn’t sure in what vein. I tried going the literary magazine route which was great because I was able to read so many brilliant pieces by very talented writers. And this got me thinking, “How many of these writers have longer compilations they’d like to promote?” I’ve always wanted to combine creative writing, publishing and my background in social media marketing and all of a sudden a glittery light bulb turned on: PUBLISH THROUGH WATTPAD!
How does your day look? I mean, you’re an author, poetess, publisher, social media maven, mommy and wife!! *gasping for breath here*
Hold on, I need a second. I feel a panic attack coming on! Seriously though, as long as the “wife” and “mommy” parts come first each day, I try to give myself a break when it comes to everything else. My daughter goes to school for four hours, so as far as publishing and writing goes, I complete my work in that time. I like to make sure that Tipsy Lit stuff is under control for the first two hours of my day (answering emails, promoting our work through social media, updating the blog, etc.) and then I write for an hour every day and try to hit anywhere from 500 to 1,000 words on latest novel, White Smoke. I also do social media marketing work for a production company based in LA, and I schedule that work in the evenings after my daughter has gone to bed. Oh and if I have time I write a poem. I just reread all of that, and I seriously sound like a lunatic.
What do you see on the horizon for Tipsy Lit? What do you want it to be when it’s all growed up?
Right now, I’m taking it a day at a time. As long as we’re publishing high quality literature and growing our reading and writing community, I’m happy. I’ve thought about possibly crossing over into small press territory, but having a publisher myself, I’m fully aware of the hard work, dedication and investment it takes to make a publishing company thrive, and I’m not at that point in my life right now. But maybe someday.
What are you looking to publish, specifically, and why Wattpad? Give us the quick and dirty.
Jessica Sita (our anthology editor), and I discussed what we’re looking for, and we’ve decided to consider all genres, as long as they’re literary quality. I’m personally looking for passionate writing and authors who are creative yet still critical when it comes to editing their manuscripts. And neither of us are fans of erotica or gratuitous violence.
Ah, Wattpad. Did you know there are over 35 million users on Wattpad, all just sitting there, patiently waiting to read YOUR work? That’s why I love Wattpad in addition to the fact that it speaks to my social media marketing heart. At the end of each story, Wattpad includes a set of sharing buttons so readers can send your story through their social media channels. Love that! And really what’s amazing is the psychology behind it. Say you’ve self-published a book and you submit it to Tipsy Lit to have us republish it through our Wattpad account. You then receive an entirely new readership who will not only want to read any other work you’re currently selling, but they’ll most likely spring for the hard copy of for the self-published version of your Wattpad story because, what reader doesn’t want a signed copy? So you’ve basically boosted your sales by publishing through us and widened your exposure as an author. All without spending a dime.
I think it’s important to note that what makes publishing through your personal Wattpad account different from publishing through Tipsy is our online prowess. We have over 10,000 subscribers on our blog alone, not to mention our built up social media networks, so you already go in knowing that you’ll gain a whole new following.
Lastly, the Wattpad app. Readers can put it on their phone or tablet and read FREE stories and they’re formatted to be read just like on your Kindle. Now, that’s pretty sweet.
How do you unplug? Or do you? Are you really just Small Wonder 2.0?
I loved that show, so probably yes. But really, I try to find time to read, I take baths, I drink Sleepy Time Tea Extra and pretend it’s a vat of wine. So that.
Advice for dare-to-dream writers, ahem, me.
Don’t dream. Do it. See, that’s what separates the Oprahs from the non-Oprahs. Oprah didn’t just place her chin on her palm and lovingly sigh, “Gee, it would really be nice to be a universally known amazing mega superstar who’s a billionaire and shouts cars at people – You get a car! And you get a car!” No, Cristina. Oprah never dreams. She does. So my advice? Be like Oprah. P.S. – I love Oprah.
Seriously, what’s the deal with the svelte ankles?
You’d have to ask God. He’s the one who delivered the gift.
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That’s all she wrote, folks! If you want that kind of glittery-power behind your writing, head over to TipsyLit for all the details. It’s all about connections, meeting people, building genuine relationships, and presenting them with boxes of Sleepy Time Tea Extra, I’m thinking. In all seriousness, this is the real power of social media and creativity. TipsyLit is harnessing that into a platform where you meet like minded people, or not so like minded, but stretching you all the same – and that’s what it’s all about. What have you got to lose? Your dreams, so says Ericka – and we can’t afford to lost those. Now start writing!
If you have any questions leave them in the comments, I’m sure she’ll answer them, between robot charges.
Ericka Clay is a published novelist and the founding editor of Tipsy Lit, a publisher that cuts the @#%$^&.
Ericka has been awarded a number of times by Writers Digest for various short fiction pieces, she has written four novels (one of which placed as a quarter-finalist in the 2010 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award contest) and is in the process of writing her fourth novel, White Smoke.