Island Writers' Network
The Island Writers’ Network met on Monday, March 4, 2013, at the Heritage Library with 31 people attending:
James Edward Alexander, Will Anderson, John Bickers, Bob Bredin, Len Camarda, Tom Crawford, Will Cross,
Sheila Gale, Anne Grace, Jane Hill, Susan Lee, Norm Levy, Cathryn McNamee, Sansing McPherson, Anne-Marie
Mooney, Bert Mooney, Janet Morris, Peter, Schwarzlose, Jim Schulze, Greg Smorol, Kent Thune, Paul Weiss, Mel
Witmer, Gene Youtz; new members Natasha Boyd, Leo Cummins, Linda Jamie, Robin Liebenberg; visitors Stella
Anderson, Lee Anderson, and Kelly Dykes.
Moderator Tom Crawford called the meeting to order at 7:04 p.m., followed by introductions.
Program: IWN member James Edward Alexander spoke on the topic “When you make a good plan, you get
lucky,” about his marketing plan for his memoir trilogy – Halfway Home From Kinderlou, Forks in the Road, and I
Wish You Had Been There – plus an estate planning booklet, If I Should Die Before I Wake … What Happens to My
Stuff? Through conversation and socializing he has discovered who his reading audience is and has sought
opportunities to speak to groups with that demographic. A single speaking engagement for a Rotary in his
hometown of Valdosta, GA, turned into three engagements that produced $1,500 in book sales and the
opportunity for more bookings because a Georgia Rotary governor was there and will tell other Rotaries across
the state, This was good planning that resulted in good luck.
Various pieces of advice from JEA and other members include:
• Figure out who your reading audience is and make a marketing plan targeted at it.
• Forego an honorarium in exchange for free lodging. “No honorarium” is an enticement with organizations,
which can often arrange a free hotel room.
• Publishing through CreateSpace (an Amazon on-line, print-on-demand publisher) is the most economical
way to publish that he has found. He published his first book through Author House because he wanted
hardcover. It cost several thousand dollars. CS prints only paperbacks but charges only the printing cost per
book plus shipping. Extra services such as editing, formatting, or cover design can be purchased. CS, which has
a printing plant in Charleston, ships virtually overnight.
• Len Camarda shared that he researched several publishers and settled on Author House before he had
heard about CreateSpace. AH was extremely professional, gave him the hardcover edition he wanted, and
produced a handsome product. He was able to negotiate price in some instances, getting AH to double the
number of books shipped when he said a price was too high. Len’s book is The Seventh Treasure.
• Jane Hill shared that CreateSpace offers expanded distribution through Ingram, the largest book distributor
in the world, for just $25. James Edward bought expanded distribution for his latest book. Len Camarda bought
that with Author House also.
• Cathryn McNamee told about listing books with The Book Depository (now owned by Amazon) a UK-based
online seller of books and e-books, with free shipping worldwide.
• Iconix.biz of Tennessee designed JEA’s cover and did bookmarks and cards. He was quite pleased with
quality and price. CS also offers cards and bookmarks. He had an attractive pull-up banner done by Omega
Graphics, Mathews Dr., HHI.
• Kent Thune shared his blogging experience and says Amazon pays him a fee when his recommendation of
a book on his blog results in book sales.
Minutes of the February 4 meeting were approved as amended and submitted electronically.
Treasurer’s report: Greg Smorol reported an end-of-February balance on hand of $3,987.39, up from $3,530.18
at the end of January due to book sales and dues from one member.
Greg and Sansing McPherson will research options with Pay Pal so we can charge books from CreateSpace, which
does not accept checks, to a Pay Pal account. They will also pursue getting a smart-phone adapter that enables
the phone to scan credit cards for book sales.
Publishing news: Len Camarda displayed his new hardcover book, The Seventh Treasure, published through
Author House. He said AH was incredibly professional. He was able to purchase a package for cover design,
website, extended distribution through Ingram, format for e-books, and production of a book trailer.
Anthology: We have no more copies of our new anthology, HHI: Living the Dream, and need to reorder as soon
as possible. Greg and Sansing will do this through Pay Pal this week.
Open Mike will occur Monday, March 18, at 7:00 p.m., in the Heritage Library, facilitated by Norm Levy. Norm
reported 11 people participated in the February Open Mike.
Program ideas: Sansing has spoken with CJ Lyons, NY Time best-selling thriller writer and Hilton Head resident,
and was told CJ is publishing 5 books this year and is under deadlines until early in 2014.
Webmaster Jane Hill reported she added a new page to the website (www.iwn-hhi.org) that shows the covers of
all books by members with a jpg of their cover. Each cover picture will link to a site where that book can be
purchased on-line, and will link to the author’s web page if he/she has one. Any IWN members whose books are
not there can send Jane a jpg.
• Susan Lee suggested we invest in a pull-up banner showing all 3 of our anthology covers for use at book
• Tom Crawford said he and John Bickers, who have Massachusetts roots, will send books to the
Massachusetts Library Association Conference. Jane Hill commented that although she paid no fee to exhibit at
the Virginia Library event there were printing and shipping costs, and she sold no books.
Meeting adjourned at 8:45 p.m.