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Indie Author Day 2016 - Interview with WordyNerdBird

Updated on January 22, 2017

About the Author

Name (real and/or pen): Joanne Van Leerdam. I publish on a blog as WordyNerdBird.

Genre(s): Poetry. The occasional short story. One play!

Name(s) of the book(s) you’ve published and link(s) to purchase:




Direct from author:

The Shakespeare Omelette (play):


Author's Facebook page:

How long you have been a published author: Since June 2016.


The Interview

1. What made you decide to become an indie author? What do you like to write about?

I decided to become an indie author because I wanted to retain control over my work. There is more freedom to write honestly.

I write about life experiences - not just mine - and about the things that move me. I love to use powerful imagery and rhythms together to draw the reader in.

2. How did you publish your first book?

I went with a co-publishing company the first time. They were good at guiding me through the process, and I learned a lot along the way. For my next book, I'll definitely do it on my own.

3. Did you ever try to submit to traditional publishers? If so, what was your experience like?

I have submitted to traditional publishers, but they don't seem to have much appetite for poetry. I don't think that is reflective of the general population, who still seem very interested and appreciative of poetry.

4. How did you market your first book? Has your process changed with subsequent books?

I had a book launch at a local bookstore, and a number of book signing events in surrounding towns.

I've worked hard to promote my book via social media and by personally visiting bookstores, leaving cards with people, and by word of mouth. The local newspaper published a story which was great advertising.

I'll be appearing at my local spring festival fair in October, and at a couple of school fairs in November.

5. How do you support other indie authors?

I've started The Indie Writers' Cooperative on Facebook as a place where we can share our work, and share each other's work with our own networks. Most of us have Facebook, Goodreads, and Twitter links as well as websites or blogs, so it's easy to share those things and get others interested.

I try to support and encourage indie authors, as well as musicians, artists, and photographers, in my local area by visiting their events and buying their work when I can.

6. What responses have you received from telling people that you are a writer?

Most people think it's really great. I think that many people see "writers" as other people that they don't know - they don't really have a concept of a novelist or a poet as a regular person who still has to take the kids to school or buy groceries at the local supermarket.

7. What/who has been your biggest support as an indie author?

I have a particular friend who has been a huge encouragement to me through the whole process. She's an indie musician, so she understands the challenges.

Friends on my social media have been wonderful in sharing my work and promoting my book for me.

8. Quote from a positive review of your work.

"I have just finished reading your book. It took me a while because I often read each poem up to seven or eight times to let it settle on my mind and heart. I LOVE it!"

That's dedication, eh?


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