Now would be a good time to proudly announce that Charlotte Aimes: The Great Alpine Adventure has been published by Rowing Girl Productions, and is available on Amazon (paperback or Kindle), Kobo, Smashwords … with more coming soon.
It has been a long and interesting journey, as many of you will know if you’ve been following from the early days of the Writing Charlotte Aimes blog. I started writing Charlotte two years ago, when the publishing landscape looked quite different than it does today.
Charlotte herself also looked quite different back in the day: I was originally writing for a 12-year-old … who turned into a 14-year-old … who one fine afternoon announced [spoiler alert], “Mum, come on. You can’t write a YA book without *some* romance. I totally ship Ren and Charlotte.”
Charlotte was always intended to be an indie publication, as I wanted to put it out under the Creative Commons licensing BY-NC-SA (I did this with the paperback edition). Two years ago, copyright seemed like an exhausting and complicated conversation to be having with potential publishers or agents. It’s still a complicated area for many in publishing.
This is partly because the digital publishing landscape and platforms are changing rapidly, and change tends to challenge our sense of control on a fundamental level. But it’s also because copyright is very much tied to the need to be paid for work undertaken. I don’t have a clear solution for this, except to say that it’s up to the individual to choose how best to do this for themselves—and for their works.
But, in the case of Charlotte Aimes, let’s face it: about 99% of the western world’s online-enabled teenagers are reblogging, remixing, making mash-ups and generally plundering content all over the place to collaborate and create, re-create and curate their own views on the world. So you have to ask: is that a bad thing? Is that a value-less economy? I think not.
The production team
Interestingly, over the course of writing Charlotte, it has not only become easier to publish your own works of fiction, but with bestselling indie writers like Hugh Howey and Darcie Chan making waves with their work and (especially in Howey’s case) with their general approaches to reader engagement, ‘self-publishing’ has also become less stigmatised.
For someone like Yours Truly, the good thing about ‘going indie’ is that all the accoutrements like trailers and websites and so-on—the narrative media extras—are there to be experimented with. No negotiations, no discussions around what I should and shouldn’t do. I was able to experiment and collaborate as I liked.
And I liked.
With thanks to the following …
The trailer: with vision and voice-overs from my kids and friends, and the generous collaboration of Lina and …, who supplied the fabulous music track.
The book cover and typesetting: with Super-Jane, of JD Smith Design.
The website: with the inspired visual design of Stefano Massa, aka Doctorcrowd.
— Libby O (@libby_ol) November 15, 2012