Mel Comley

 

Mel ComleyMeet Mel Comley

 

What made you choose Red Adept Editing?

In a word, “reputation.” Looking around at the successful indie authors doing well in the charts back in 2011 and 2012, I noticed Red Adept’s name kept cropping up. As my sales increased, I sent Lynn an enquiry email, never dreaming to think I’d get a slot with one of Red Adept’s editors. The rest, as they say, is history.

 

You’ve mostly worked with Stefanie on the RAE staff. What do you enjoy most about her editing style?

This is risky, since I have a novel booked in with her in December. 🙂 Stefanie is wonderful to work with, patient, strict, and very understanding, all at the same time. Stefanie recognizes implicitly what I’m trying to achieve, not only with my plotlines, but also my characters too. She’s hard to beat. Believe me. I’ve worked with a few different editors over the years.

 

I know you’ve published a lot of books, but I’ve lost count. How many do you have out?

Gosh, I had to go to Amazon and physically check how many titles I have uploaded. To date, I have 14 novels (one more due out next week), 5 novellas, and 10 short stories, some of which I’ve written under a pen name.

At the moment, I have 5 series on the go. That’s a hefty task, trying to keep up with that amount of characters, but I’m coping… so far, anyway.

 

You have the Justice Series, which are detective novels, and a few romances. Which do you enjoy writing the most?

I have to say I much prefer writing blood and gore. Writing thrillers certainly gets this writer’s adrenaline pumping.

 

Tell us more about the Justice Series. Are the books stand-alones, or do they need to be read in order?Mel Comley Covers

The Justice series is my pride and joy and the one series that I suppose you’d say I’m most famous for writing. I’ve tried to call a halt to the series numerous times but have felt the wrath of my fans for even daring to consider saying farewell to Lorne and the gang. Number one tip in this industry: always give the fans what they want.

Each book can be read as a stand-alone thriller, but there is a solid background story centered around the lead character and her family. For that reason alone, I’d suggest starting the series with book one, Cruel Justice, although I have just released a novella preceding that, titled Blind Justice.

What part of self-publishing do you enjoy the most?

It’s definitely not the marketing side of things. I appreciate the freedom self-publishing allows me. Some of my friends who have turned to trade publishing since their success have decried the amount of work the publishing houses expect them to do to whip their manuscripts into shape. I’m not a writer who fills out my books just for the sake of doing it. I’m a storyteller, and I go where the story and the characters lead me. That, at least in my book (excuse the pun), is the way novels should be written. It’s what my fans demand of me.

 

You have some awesome covers. Who does your cover work?

I have a terrific cover artist, but I’m not sure I should say who she is in case she gets inundated with requests. 🙂 Seriously, her name is Karri Klawiter. She’s another professional, along with Stefanie, who I’d be lost without. Every cover I’ve ever purchased from Karri has blown me away. She always creates them within the first or second attempt. I know authors who have had terrible hassle with their cover artists, going back and forth multiple times. With Karri, I give her my idea, and bam, she comes up with the goods right away. I’d say 50% of my success comes from the covers she creates for me. A good cover is the key in this business.

 

What do you do when you’re not writing?

Over the last two years, I’ve been renovating my farmhouse, which is situated in the beautiful French countryside. And yes, when I say I’ve renovated it, I do mean actually getting my hands dirty. The only things I haven’t turned my hand to are the electrical wiring and the water.

I also havMel Comley Gardene a great love for gardening, which is just as well, as I have a one-and-a-quarter-acre garden. This time last year, I created a huge pond. I’ve been amazed at how established all the plants look after only one year. We now have over 80 carp living in the pond.

When I get the opportunity, I love to paint. Before I started writing, I used to paint vases and pots and sell them at craft fairs. I use the Donna Dewberry One-Stroke painting method. You get fabulous results with minimum effort.

 

 

Name a few of your favorite authors and tell us what you like about them.

My favourite thriller author used to be James Patterson, but now I believe Karen Rose has taken over from him in a big way. She always knows how to grip readers and put them on the edges of their seats.

My favourite Indie author has to be Linda S. Prather. I discovered her books several years ago, and since then, we’ve become very dear friends. If you haven’t read any of her novels, then you’ve truly been missing out.

 

What advice would you give to a new author?

Perfect your craft by getting involved in a critique group and then make sure you put aside a potful of money for a great editor. I would never suggest anyone upload their work for the world to see without it being tweaked or torn apart by an editor first. But be careful. There are some people out there who call themselves editors who clearly aren’t. That’s why I intend to stick with Red Adept for years to come.

 

 

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