Friday, January 28, 2011

EDIE RAMER--Forced out of her comfort zone


Please help me welcome successful, self-published author Edie Ramer to the blog. [Rebecca's note: Self-publishing? Yikes!! All that promo. Talk about an introvert's worst nightmare]

Rebecca, thank you so much for inviting me. ShyWriters is the perfect place for me. In my short bio I say that I’m funnier on paper than in real life, yet Facebook and Twitter are a part of my day now. It would be nice to be naturally witty and funny, or even say profound Oprah-like things that make people reply “OMG, that is so inspirational and insightful!” Once in a while, I can be funny or insightful, but most of the time, I search for something—anything—interesting to say.

Oddly, blogging is easier. I’m one of the founders of
Magical Musings. When my two CPs and I started it, I wasn’t sure how I’d do, but I was game. It turned out that I was good at blogging (hey, I can admit it when I do things right). But I tweak mine several times, just as I tweak my mss. My fellow blogger, Liz Kreger, writes hers in about 10-15 minutes, and she’s good at blogging, too. A natural. But she’s probably solidly on the extrovert side of the Myers-Briggs scale, while I’m on the introvert side.

That’s why writing a book, alone in my office, is something I love doing. But self-publishing has forced me into the online world. I’m so lucky that I’ve joined groups that have helped me pave the way. First, my local RWA group, WisRWA. In the beginning, I went to every meeting. At first I hardly said anything, but in about 3 years I was leading the meetings. I joined Amy Atwell’s first GIAM group. In the beginning, I was silent, an observer. Now I’m as noisy as anyone. I joined a critique group. There were 8 of us, and though it’s disbanded, we’re still friends. (BTW, since we started, everyone in it has published and 2 members are NY Times bestselling authors.)

Through Magical Musings, I’ve made a lot of writer friends. I’m a member of RWA-WF and I write their Industry News column. I belong to 2 groups formed to help each other through the self- publishing maze. Members of these 2 groups are urging me to join 2 others, and I know I need to become active on Kindleboards… (insert silent scream)

This is a LOT of socializing for a shy writer. Not only that, my involvement with the groups takes away from my writing time. But through the contacts my first self-published book,
Cattitude, is now 1416 in the Amazon Kindle bestseller rank. (That includes ALL the Kindle books, so that’s awesome for me.) I’ve had it on sale for 99 cents, so that contributes. Dead People, which is $2.99, is in the 35K rank now. (These ranks fluctuate by the hour.) But I know the big jump for Cattitude has come because of promo help from my friends.

I think I have a “go ahead, try it” voice inside of me that overrides the introvert voice. Sometimes it’s too much (hence the silent scream), but I know extroverts who’ve had to back away from the internet for weeks at a time. Karin Tabke calls it “going into her Bat Cave.” I can’t afford to go into my cave now (mine would be, of course, Cat Cave—or Cat & Dog Cave, since I often have a snoring beagle in my office as well as a purring cat who demands attention), but in the future I might disappear for a week or two every once in a while.

So for now, this shy writer is way out of her comfort zone. It’s all good, I’m making great friends, selling books, and looking forward to selling more.

What have you done lately that’s taken you out of your comfort zone?

Award-winning writer Edie Ramer is funnier on the page than in real life. She loves her cat so much she made her the heroine of CATTITUDE, her first paranormal romance. Her second book, DEAD PEOPLE, Book one of her Haunted Hearts series, was her American Title V final book. She also has a short story available. You can find out more about Edie and her books on her website. You can follow her on Twitter and on Facebook, where once in a great while she manages to be witty.

18 comments:

  1. I've done a lot of the same things, Edie, and I'm so happy I did. One thing I still don't feel comfortable doing is talking in front of a large group. Maybe someday, but not today. lol

    Great blog post!

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  2. Melanie, I've given talks several times to my local writers group, and each time I'm a little more confident. But I try to make it interactive. That works much better for me. I'm not sure how I'd be if I had to talk to a huge group.

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  3. Edie, I can relate so much to what you're saying. This path to publishing and beyond is NOT what we think about as we sit down to write a book. You know very well what I've been through these last months and like you, there were some painful moments. We both are struggling to maintain and push that comfort level back a bit - and the good news is that you're doing an amazing job!

    Good for you!

    Dale

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  4. Edie!! Wonderful post - it's true, I haven't met you in person, but your writing is incredibly funny and Karin thinks you're golden, so that's all I need to know! LOL
    LOVE LOVE LOVE Cattitude!! I couldn't put it down from the moment I started it - such a cool idea, very unique and extremely well-written. And hilarious!
    Well, the major thing I've done "lately" that's taken me WAY out of my comfort zone is - the hubby and I had to file a petition for temp custody of our grandson because of drug and alcohol issues with his parents. That is by far the hardest thing I've ever had to do in a lifetime of rather difficult situations, but it was worth it because my daughter has now been clean for almost 2 months and is in treatment for her problem and has a new lease on life. So I'm very glad we stepped out onto that ledge.
    And as far as the writing/publishing/self-publishing business goes - I don't know how full-time writers can keep writing while at the same time trying to do their own promo and navigate the whole social networking world!! And still manage to consistently put forth wonderful stories. Kudos to you, Edie! Keep up the awesome work!! *hugs*

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  5. Edie, to me, you seem wonderfully warm and natural online and not shy at all... As an introvert as well, though, I know that the social networking stuff can be pretty overwhelming as far as feeling like we *always* talking and talking...even when it's just our fingers typing everything ;). But, having had the pleasure of getting to know you in the blogosphere, I can say you do a fabulous job of managing it, even when it must be draining. Well done on all of that, as well as on your delightful novels!! xo

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  6. Well, Edie, you may be out of your comfort zone, but I'm in awe of all you do. And I'd say what you do inspires me.

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  7. Dale, the promotion you're doing for the Writing for the Stars contest is amazing. I can remember when I was in the American Title V contest, I was wiped out at the end of each round. You are always cheerful and ready for anything. You, among many other writers, are my idol.

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  8. Bonnie Jean, when I read what you said about your grandson and daughter, you ripped my heart open. I'm happy for all of you that it's working out.

    Thanks for all the nice things you said about Cattitude. That was probably the most fun I had writing a book. Karin was my CP at the time! I think she was writing Good Girl Gone Bad. lol

    I've actually cut back on promo these last couple of weeks. I can't do it all, not all the time. As of last night, my last revision for my next book is in the hands of my CP. Before I do anything else, though, I have to clean. After that, I will do some promo.

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  9. Marilyn, I once heard that an extrovert is energized by social interaction, and an introvert is drained by it. When I'm with other writers, I'm often energized. It could be the company. :) But though I'm on the introvert side, I'm near the middle, which means I'm not so introverted that it holds me back from doing things.

    And thanks for calling my books "delightful." You know I love yours.

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  10. Mary Jo, you inspire me. So right back at you!

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  11. Edie, thanks for coming on! I wanted to tell you that first thing this morning, but that darn day job just gets in the way of my internet time. LOL

    :)

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  12. Becky, I hate it when those darn day jobs do that. Thanks so much for inviting me!

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  13. Hmmm, comfort zone issues? I think we all have them. Some people just have larger zones than others.

    For me, it's letting people I don't know read my work. Funny, huh? Isn't that the point of being a writer? So, I recently stepped out of my comfort zone and submitted my first page to "First Page" at Dear Author. It'll be a few weeks before they post it, but once there, I have to sit back and read all the critiques. Time to add another layer to my Rhino Skin!

    Great post, Edie. When I think of you the word PERSEVERANCE comes to mind. And that is a great word!

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  14. Elle, I enjoy reading DA's first page, though I don't always agree with the comments. I hope you'll let us know when yours is up. Good for you!

    Perseverance does fit me! Part of it is that writing is what I really want to do.

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  15. Coming out of the bat cave to tell everyone to buy Edie's books! They are wonderfully fun and clever reads!

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  16. What a great post, I was/am horribly shy and I like to call myself a WIP. But, I surprised my hubby one day, at age 22, and told him that I was going to sale cars. He laughed, and replied. "Rachel, you don't talk to strangers, how are you going to sale cars?"
    My answer: "I'm going to play pretend."
    And that is what I do. If I pretend that I'm a confident, social person, I can be, but otherwise, I'm an introverted mess. Thanks for sharing in your story and making the rest of us feel normal in our quiet worlds.

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  17. Very nice post today. I think the one thing that has taken me out of my comfort is going back to school. Most of the time, I'm in a haze until that lightbulb finally kicks in. Ughhh, it's been crazy and has taken me in directions I never saw coming.

    Val
    lastnerve2000@gmail.com

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