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If you follow us on Twitter or Facebook, you would see that we've been promoting a contest Inkshares is running looking for the next big horror author. If you weren't aware, HorrorTalk is one of the partners co-sponsering this great opportunity, and we're happy to share A God in the Shed author J.F. Dubeau's thoughts on Inkshares and the contest.

The publishing industry is a mess. The traditional publishers are ostensibly looking for something 'new,' or whatever is 'next,' but won't touch ideas that push the envelope too much-which is frequently the case with horror. Meanwhile, to self-publish a novel at a professional level of quality requires more administrative work than it does writing, and still has no brick-and-mortar distribution.

I was trying the self-publishing route with one book and exploring submission to publishers with another, when I stumbled onto Inkshares. It seemed a little too good to be true. I could name almost a dozen small companies that offered vanity-press services under the guise of 'quality traditional publishing.'

I've gone through the production process with Inkshares twice now: once for my debut science-fiction novel, The Life Engineered, and again for my second book, a horror novel entitled A God in the Shed.

I was already impressed after my first book. Inkshares matched me up with a superb developmental editor. I can't impress upon you the importance of that: not an editor who would work for me, nor one whom I could work for, but one who understood the book-its theme and the message behind it-and helped me refine the narrative. Production and distribution of the book was on par with what I expected from a serious traditional publisher, but what stood out was the passion the people at Inkshares had for the book. I walked out of my experience with The Life Engineered more than satisfied. I was impressed. So much in fact that I threw in a second novel.

So how was the experience this time? Even better.

Between my first and second book, Inkshares-now over two years-old-retooled their production process and managed to improve an already excellent end-product and reach by a significant margin. My first book was of a professional quality, and well distributed into brick-and-mortar. But A God in the Shed, from the cover art by M.S. Corley through the deckle-edge on the paper, is a work of art (to be sure, I'm speaking about the physical product rather than my writing). There's been no end to the compliments I've received on the cover, and as a graphic designer myself, that was an important point that I'm glad was handled so masterfully. In terms of distribution, A God in the Shed is all over the front tables of the indies, Indigo, and Barnes & Noble.

To boot, Inkshares put A God in the Shed in front of several influential eyes in the TV and film world. This got the attention of many people and allowed me to work with Brooklyn Weaver of Energy Entertainment as well as Akiva Goldsman of Weed Road Production. The fact that I have a real, chugging-along "TV deal" at Skydance remains surreal.

While there is a thrill like no other in holding a finished copy of a book you've written, I find myself surprised by how much I'm looking forward to the production process for the sequel to A God in the Shed. There's something truly addictive to working within the Inkshares family. If you're thinking about entering the 2017 Inkshares Horror Contest, consider this my ardent recommendation. Please feel free to also DM me on Inkshares.


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About The Author
Author: Steve Pattee
Administrator, US Editor
He's the puppet master. You don't see him, but he pulls the strings that gets things done. He's the silent partner. He's black ops. If you notice his presence, it's the last thing you'll notice — because now you're dead. He's the shadow you thought you saw in that dark alleyway. You can have a conversation with him, and when you turn around to offer him a cup of coffee, he's already gone.
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