Posts Tagged ‘Poets & Writers’

CadiganSorry about the long absence. I was backed up putting together the quarterly newsletter for the Garden State Speculative Fiction Writers, and I just went through a bout of the flu. That’s the bad news. The good news is there’s a lot of material from the newsletter that I figure I could run here. Just need to get permission from the editor, and … Oh right. I’m the editor. Well, OK then. Here’s a very good interviewer with Robb Cadigan, author of “Phoenixville Rising.” Since the newsletter is for a writers group, the emphasis is on the practicalities of the writing business. But even if you’re not a writer, I hope you find it interesting.


Interview With Author Robb Cadigan

by Tom Joyce

Editor’s Note: Author Robb Cadigan was recently spotlighted in “Poets & Writers” magazine’s feature, “The Savvy Self-Publisher,” for his efforts publishing and promoting his novel “Phoenixville Rising.” He agreed to an interview with “The Speculator” about self-publishing strategies.

Q: Could you tell us something about your background, and about “Phoenixville Rising?”

A: For as long as I can remember, I’ve been a writer. As a kid, I thought I would grow up to write and illustrate comic books. My love of reading and writing definitely came from DC Comics and an obsession with Batman.
I went to Bucknell University to study English and Creative Writing. But when it came time to get a job, I didn’t know anyone who actually had a career as a novelist. I had no role models for that path. So I headed for the next closest form of fiction: advertising.
For thirteen years or so, I worked in marketing and broadcasting at QVC and helped to build the shopping channel into the world’s most profitable television network. Although I enjoyed my career at QVC, I was still writing fiction during any spare time I could find. In fact, sometime around 2000, I took a sabbatical from QVC to finish a novel. I ended up getting an agent with that novel and, although that manuscript never sold to a publisher, the agent gave me the confidence to get serious about following my dream of being a full-time writer.
“Phoenixville Rising” came about when my wife and I moved to Phoenixville, Pa. After we decided that this small town was the place we would raise our family, I started to investigate the history of the place my kids would call their hometown. It really started just as a hobby to learn more about local history. But writers are always filling the well. And the more I discovered about this little town, the more the story of “Phoenixville Rising” started to take shape in my mind.
I actually wrote the first version of “Phoenixville Rising”  more than ten years ago. My agent loved it and shopped it around, but again there were no takers. It’s a tough book to market, because it’s cross-genre: it’s a coming-of-age tale, with a crime story and historical romance woven through it. The original version even had a ghost story in there. Sales departments at big publishers had a hard time with it. So after it got rejected, I put it in a drawer and went back to working on my craft. My objective is always to become a better writer.
About two years ago, I took the manuscript out of the drawer and rewrote it into the book it is today. And by the time the novel made it through the rewrite, I was happy to see the world of publishing had drastically changed …

Q: Why did you decide to self-publish?

A: I had a top literary agent and navigated the rough waters of traditional publishing for years. We received some of the “nicest” rejections letters around, but sadly no takers for my work. I just put my head down and kept working, trying to get better at the craft, (more…)