KM: I’m here with Author Phil Torcivia. Phil is the author of What a Nice Guy and four other books in that series. Phil claims to be one relationship away from a third cat. Welcome Phil!
PT: Thank you for having me.
KM: Okay, first piece of business, give us the skinny on your latest book What a Nice Guy.
PT: Like my previous books, it’s a compilation of humorous essays about relationships. It is 300 pages, contains great sketches by my friend, Melanie Durkee, and it’s available at Amazon this month for only $0.99.
KM: A lot of my readers are authors either practicing or aspiring, so we’re always interested in the nuts and bolts of writing. Tell me about your journey to becoming an author.
PT: I’ll give you the Cliff’s notes. I divorced in 2003 and migrated west from Philadelphia to San Diego. Dating at any age is challenging. Dating in my forties in southern California is ridiculous. I began documenting my disasters on a Facebook page, which eventually turned into my books. (KM: Dating does suck! Finding a sane, compatible mate is like trying to sort fly shit out of pepper!)
KM: Ok, let’s talk turkey. Your books are not for the meek or prudish. One could say you’d need a good sense of humor to read them. For example a quote: “Judging by their reactions, you’d think I just toe-fucked a Pomeranian.” (Personally it had me in stitches.) What is your target audience?
PT: Probably not the Christian Conservative, especially if she owns a Pomeranian. I find women 22-60, both single and (sadly) married, appreciate my humor the most.
KM: Couple your sense of humor with your unique style of writing, is that why you decided to go the Indie route rather than traditional publishing? If not, how did you decide?
PT: New authors have quite a battle ahead of them trying to land an agent and publisher, especially when they’re not writing about such interesting topics (*yawn*) as vampires. KM: Psst – Agents aren’t looking for those either! I really had no choice but to go independent. Now that I have gone that way, I’m happy that I did since it gives me more freedom and no need to share my commission with talentless leeches.
KM: As any author knows, Marketing can be a bitch, a necessary evil. Talk to me about marketing.
PT: I’m fortunate to have an IT and marketing background. I grew up with paid search and search engine optimization. For me (and most authors), the most logical and effective arena to advertise is through social media including Facebook, Twitter, and blog posts. I spend at minimum four hours a day (yes, every day) tuning my social media accounts and promotions. That’s how I’ve built up 32,000 Facebook followers and 45,500 Twitter followers in the past three years.
KM: Cover art is what I find the most difficult. Learning Photoshop for me was like bludgeoning myself with an empty vodka bottle. Talk to me about your cover art – who does it?
PT: I agree! I know what I’m good at (hitting the snooze button, alcohol disposal, and cat teasing) and what I suck at (art). So, I hire artists through elance.com primarily. It’s an excellent resource.
KM: Along with writing witty books, you also promote other authors. Can you tell us a bit about what you do and where other authors/readers can find you?
PT: I love that in our industry, we can work together with what in other places would be considered competitors. (KM: Me too. I love the writing community!) There’s plenty of room for lots of books, genres, and authors. I look to share my knowledge and save my author friends some of the pain I’ve suffered along the way. I put up a site called thekindledailydeal.com specifically to promote inexpensive books available on Kindle. That site has over 6200 followers and is growing. I gladly feature independent authors who ask nicely and are willing to buy me scotch.
KM: Thanks for stopping by! If you want to find Phil, he’s all over the web. Phil – lay it on us – where can we stalk you?
PT: Stalk me, please! I’m on Facebook.com/SuchaNiceGuy and @PhilTorcivia on Twitter. My blog is at PhilTorcivia.blogspot.com and my author websites are Torcivia.com and TheKindleDailyDeal.com. Also, soon I’ll be hosting a weekly webcast in San Diego on Mondays at 11am discussing dating, relationships, and lifestyles (details to follow).