We have some amazing publicist who work hard behind the scenes with out authors to ensure maximum exposure for all of our titles. We’ve posted quick question interviews with several of our publicists. Today, you get to meet Stacey O’Neale, one of our superstars!
Blogger, writer, book reviewer, website owner and now a publicist with Entangled Publishing Stacey O’Neale knows the book industry from multiple angles. So let’s get to know the woman who is a well recognized face on Twitter and in the Blogisphere.
I first found you on Twitter and have enjoyed reading your blog and The YA Fantasy Guide. Would you tell us a bit about the YAFG?
The YAFG is a website dedicated to books within the YA fantasy genre. The site features recommendations/reviews by category, author and literary agent interviews, articles for aspiring writers, and monthly contests/giveaways.
How did you get into this?
Two people actually inspired the YAFG. The first one was Simon Lipskar from Writer’s House. I had a chance to attend a literary agent panel that included Simon. In case you don’t know who he is – he’s one of the best and most respected literary agents in the business. The panel was discussing writing platforms and someone in the audience had asked if a writer should have a blog and what amount of traffic would be impressive to an agent. Every agent said 5,000 hits per month then Simon said 10,000. Everyone laughed but I remember thinking that I wanted to create an online presence that would even impress someone like him.
A few weeks later, a friend was telling me that she was re-reading Twilight for the 5th time and I looked at her like she was insane. I couldn’t understand why she would continue to read the same series when there are so many other books in that genre worth reading. I ended up running down a list of other vampire books that I thought she might like and that got my wheels turning. When I went online that night, I looked for a YA fantasy site that broke down books by favorite characters (faeries, mermaids, etc.) or subgenres (paranormal, urban, steampunk, etc.) and I couldn’t find anything. That’s pretty much when the YAFG was born.
In case you’re wondering, the YAFG gets anywhere from 20,000-30,000 hits per month. If I ever meet Simon again I’ll thank him. 🙂
What are some of your favourite YA books/series and why?
LOL, how much time do you have?
It’s easier for me to tell you authors I love versus books. Anyone who follows me on twitter knows that I love Holly Black, Cassandra Clare, and Melissa Marr. I’d buy an encyclopedia if one of those ladies wrote it. From Holly, I love the Tithe series and the Curse Workers series. Holly is a master world builder and probably my favorite writer period. From Cassie, I favor the Infernal Devices series a smidge over her Mortal Instruments series because I have a fetish for steampunk. Cassie’s great for creating characters that can make you laugh, and two pages later, make you cry. I love Melissa’s Wicked Lovely series. The world she created is so dark and sexy. It gets to a point where you don’t even know who you’re cheering for because each character is so multifaceted.
I also love to discover new blood and help them promote great new books. I was blown away by Tahereh Mafi when I read Shatter Me a few months ago. A few of the YA fantasy book/authors coming out of Entangled have really impressed me including Touch by Jus Accardo, Hushed by Kelley York, and Obsidian by Jennifer Armentrout. Now that I think about it, I actually wrote an article about some of my favorite debuts from the beginning of 2011.
What gives you inspiration for posts?
I attend a ton of conferences and have taken a ton of writing courses. I’ve also had the opportunity to talk to some fantastic people within the publishing world like successful authors, editors, publicists, literary agents, etc. Usually, the inspiration comes from something I learned that I think might help someone else or something someone told me that helped them during their road to publication. Other times, the inspiration comes from something currently going on in the publishing world or a request from someone online. The post, “How to Get a Blogger to Review Your Book” was a request from a follower on twitter.
You are currently working on a novel that sounds like you’ll soon be querying. Would you share with us your writing process?
I’m very organized. I’m not a writer who can just sit down and go without a plan. When I do that I get lost. I always spend weeks writing a detailed outline of each chapter before I start the actual writing process. I try to write everyday even if it’s only one page. I prefer to write during the day and usually with some music playing in the background.
In terms of the book I’m writing now, I’m in the middle of revisions. I had the novel professional edited and they came back with a really good suggestion, but it has caused a major rewrite of my first six chapters. Ugh, but that’s writing. Most people rewrite their novel several times before it’s ready for a publisher to consider.
You are now a publicist with Entangled Publishing, who are publishing our very own YAtopian – Kelley York. What made you decide to apply for the position?
I’m actually Kelley’s publicist. 🙂
#1 – Liz Pelletier and the rest of the EP Staff
I’ve known of Liz for years because I’m a member of Savvy Authors. When I heard about Entangled Publishing I knew I wanted in. The quality of people involved in EP is extraordinary. The level of talent here has the ability to change the game as we know it. I believe we will remake the e-pub model.
#2 – The EP Authors
Before I started with EP, I had a chance to get a few of the ARC’s on Netgalley and I was blown away. Our authors are really talented and it’s just getting better and better. I’m like a little kid when I find out that I’ve been assigned another author. I can’t wait to get started with them.
What does a typical day for a publishing publicist entail?
Lots and lots and lots of emails. Most of my time is spent organizing book tours so I spend a tremendous amount of time talking to bloggers which l love because bloggers rock! Think about it – people who love books so much that they create a blog to talk about them. What’s not to love about that?
Juggling three jobs within the publishing industry is a tough task. What’s your secret to success?
HAHA! Answer – Determination. I’m very competitive and I want to be a successful writer as much as I want to see the writers I represent on the bestsellers list. I love publishing and I feel so blessed that I’m able to make a career out of something I’m so passionate about.
Rapid Fire Questions:
Mermaids or Griffins – Mermaids
Steampunk or SciFi – Steampunk (this one is hard to answer because I also really love SciFi)
Cinema or DVD – Cinema
eBook, hardback or paperback – eBook
Pink or Blue – Blue
Thanks for this insight into Stacey O’Neale’s YA-infused mind, YAtopia!