SFFMP 67: YA Sci-Fi, Being a Hybrid Author, and Tips for Writers with Beth Revis

Today, we’re talking to YA science fiction author, Beth Revis, about being a hybrid author, the differences in traditional publishing and self-publishing, and marketing from both sides of the fence. In addition to her fiction, she has published three books for writers: Some Writing Advice, Some Publishing Advice, and Some Marketing Advice.

Here’s some of what we talked about:

  • Traditionally publishing her Across the Universe series after a thousand rejections.
  • What her publisher brought to the table as far as marketing and promotion.
  • Why she decided to self publish The Body Electric.
  • Marketing venues you can get into with a traditional publisher behind you (and the challenges of getting into the same spots as an indie).
  • Giveaways and contests and what kind of prizes she uses to inspire fan art.
  • Beth’s tips for getting an agent and a publisher (she recommends batch querying to test your query letter, sample pages, etc. before flinging your queries out to everyone in the database)?
  • Using QueryTracker to find agents suitable for your genre (newer agents may be quicker to respond and more eager to find clients than established veterans)
  • How Beth decides if a project is more suitable for self-publishing or if it might appeal to a traditional publisher.
  • Getting involved with more than Facebook when it comes to social media (she recommends Instagram and Tumblr especially for YA authors).
  • Occasionally Tweeting or Facebook posting about the perks of being on your mailing list (such as that you’ll debut book covers or teasers to subscribers)
  • Using apps like Word Swag and sites like Canva.com to take fun quotes from your book and turn them into graphics that are more shareable on social media.
  • Using Wattpad as a way to organize non-fiction projects and also to get exposure to the YA readers out there.

If you’re interested in Beth’s books for writers, the links to all three are up above. If you want to check out her fiction, you can find her novels and short stories on Amazon or get more information on her website. Her latest novel, A World Without You, will be available in July (you can pre-order it now). She’s on social media in all of the usual places too, so stop by and say hi!


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  • This was a really useful interview for me.

    I’ve started posting my debut novel in the Dark Sea Trilogy on Wattpad, one chapter a week, even prior to its general publication and distribution.

    I’ve been actively searching out good things to read on there (there’s some great stuff if you hunt it down) and interacting with folks. I upload once a week (takes about 3 minutes) and spend maybe 10 minutes a day being social. I also read and comment on someone else’s work about once or twice a week. I joined, I think, about three weeks ago, and my book is already ranking (#248 in Adventure) and ~ here’s the most important thing ~ I’ve had three sticky sign-ups on my mailing list from it in that time. I think I stand a good chance of getting the book featured once the uploads are completed and I anticipate many more sign-ups from that.

    I would only say, you need to be genuine (and genuinely genuine, not fake genuine) to make it work for you. I never ask folks to read or rate my stuff and I never ask them to sign up. The links are there and they follow if they want to. That’s it.

    And it really isn’t all “One Direction” fanfic. There’s some really good stuff. I even found some books by a certain Lindsay Buroker … 🙂

    • SFFpodcast

      Glad Wattpad is working out for you, Austin! I know I’ve found some readers there, and having your stuff where it can continue to be found long after the book is out is a form of free and ongoing marketing. It’s been years since I posted anything, but the EE books still get reads there.

      • Yes, I don’t have unrealistically high expectations of what it can do for me, but at this very early stage in my game, three new sign-ups to my mailing list has already made it worthwhile!

        Your website/blog and Twitter seems to be where you do most of your fan interaction outside your list. Actually, next time you guys don’t have a guest, maybe you could talk about the effect of your off-list fan/prospective fan interactions/communications on marketing, sign-ups and all that – websites, social media. Just an idea.

        And by all means have a glass of wine or a tot of rum beforehand to oil the wheels of creativity. 😉

        Oh and Jo, your cabinet is looking luminous now!

        *(if anyone wants to find out about my first book, “Beyond the Starline” go ahead and click on my name here and it’ll take you through to find out more … this is not spam, Lindsay gave me the go ahead to link back. Thanks.)