Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Q&A with Rie Sheridan Rose Author THE MARVELOUS MECHANICAL MAN @riesheridanrose #themarvelousmechanicalman

Rie Sheridan Rose multitasks. A lot. Her short stories appear in numerous anthologies, including Nightmare Stalkers and Dream Walkers Vols. 1 and 2, and Killing It Softly Vols. 1 and 2. She has authored twelve novels, six poetry chapbooks, and lyrics for dozens of songs. These were mostly written in conjunction with Marc Gunn, and can be found on “Don’t Go Drinking with Hobbits” and “Pirates vs. Dragons” for the most part–with a few scattered exceptions.

Her favorite work to date is The Conn-Mann Chronicles Steampunk series with five books released so far: The Marvelous Mechanical Man, The Nearly Notorious Nun, The Incredibly Irritating Irishman, The Fiercely Formidable Fugitive, and The Elderly Earl’s Estate.

Rie lives in Texas with her wonderful husband and several spoiled cat-children.


Website: https://riewriter.com/  and https://theconnmannchronicles.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/RieSheridanRose
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheConnMannChronicles/

Tell us about your book! What is it about and what inspired you to write it?

The Marvelous Mechanical Man is the story of Josephine Mann, a young woman in 1874 New York City who is looking for a job. Fate puts Professor Alistair Conn in her path, and she becomes his lab assistant. From there, it’s one non-stop adventure after another in a Steampunk romp peopled with eccentric supporting characters and lots of gadgets.

I was inspired to write it originally by a dare to do a Steampunk project for National Novel Writing Month. I had never written in the genre, and I was a fan of it, so I thought I would give it a try. Five books into the series, and a spin-off in the works, I am still in love with The Conn-Mann Chronicles.

Tell us about your publishing process. What was it like? Did you go indie or the traditional way?

This book and its sequel, The Nearly Notorious Nun, were originally published with a small press in Texas—Zumaya Publications—but she had over a hundred authors to deal with, and I had just me, so I decided to get the rights back and self-publish the series because it offers me greater control of the projects. For one thing, I only have to market one set of books, not dozens, so I can put more resources into the cause.

How did you choose the title for your book? Did it come to you right away, before you started writing it, or did it come later?

The book was originally published in 2013, so I am not entirely sure what possessed me to go for the alliteration of the title, but it does sort of roll off the tongue. It started a trend that has been continued in all of The Conn-Mann books (including the spin-off currently in revisions) of having The _______ ________ ______ titles where all the first letters are the same. After The Marvelous Mechanical Man, and The Nearly Notorious Nun we have The Incredibly Irritating Irishman, The Fiercely Formidable Fugitive, and The Elderly Earl’s Estate. (I’m saving the spin-off for now.)

I do know that after the first one, I began focusing on the title right off the bat to help guide the direction of the story. And, if you look REALLY closely, you will see that the first four books end with a person, and the fifth with a thing. This is, in part, because the first four books have a New York City story arc and the fifth starts a new story arc in Ireland.

Tell us about the cover design process. Did you have a basic idea of what your book cover would be like?

The cover of The Marvelous Mechanical Man has stayed the same through the publication transition because the first time I saw it, I fell in love. I really didn’t have much to do with the cover originally, the publisher handled all the details. She negotiated the frame around the center inset and everything. After I switched to doing it myself, I contacted the designer and asked if I could work out a deal to continue to use it. Luckily, he said yes, and we’ve used the frame to tie together all the books.

Who is your cover designer and how did you find him/her?

My cover designer for The Marvelous Mechanical Man was Brad Fraunfelter of Brad Fraunfelter Illustration. His work is just amazing, and I feel extremely fortunate that he has done the covers of three books for me now, as well as a poster I had designed for my banner and marketing. He’s very much in demand, and a browse through his website shows why.

How was your experience working with the designer?

Brad is an absolute dream to work with. I wish I could afford to have him do all my books, but as his reputation has gone up, so have his prices, so I have to save up for the treat of having him do another. He has also done a frame for the cover of the new series, so I am very excited about it.

What has been the readers’ response to your cover?

Everyone loves the cover. Even those who don’t buy the book are likely to comment on how good the cover is. I’ve had several artists comment on what an eye-catching piece it is.

What tips would you give to authors who are looking for a cover designer?

Don’t settle for someone just because they are in your price range. See if you can work out a deal with the artist you want, or save up for the cover of your dreams. It will be worth it in the long run. Of course, that presumes that you have say in the cover, because sometimes you really don’t have the option. If you are with a publishing house, they have the last word.

Anything else you’d like to say about your book?

This book is still one of my favorites. I think everyone should give Jo a try. And the Kindle version of The Marvelous Mechanical Man is always 99¢ so how can you go wrong? (Plus, if you have Kindle Unlimited, the entire series can be read for free...)

About the Book:

The Marvelous Mechanical Man is the first book in a Steampunk series featuring the adventures of Josephine Mann, an independent woman in need of a way to pay her rent. She meets Professor Alistair Conn, in need of a lab assistant, and a partnership is created that proves exciting adventure for both of them.

Alistair’s prize invention is an automaton standing nine feet tall. There’s a bit of a problem though…he can’t quite figure out how to make it move. Jo just might be of help there. Then again, they might not get a chance to find out, as the marvelous mechanical man goes missing.

Jo and Alistair find themselves in the middle of a whirlwind of kidnapping, catnapping, and cross-country chases that involve airships, trains, and a prototype steam car. With a little help from their friends, Herbert Lattimer and Winifred Bond, plots are foiled, inventions are perfected, and a good time is had by all.


Amazon → https://amzn.to/3bfoz55

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