Advice from IR Approved Author Charles Peterson: “Build your platform [your audience] as best you can before you try to self-publish.”

God Creates a Snake received a 4+ star review, making it an IndieReader Approved title.

Following find an interview with author Charles Peterson.

What is the name of the book and when was it published?

God Creates a Snake; August 13th, 2019.

What’s the book’s first line?

Snake! The Boss will see you now!

What’s the book about? Give us the “pitch”.  

Today is Snake’s creation day at the Creation Station and God has a meeting planned to discuss the way ahead. Snake quickly finds out just how much he can do while also learning about some of his—uh—shortcomings. Now you can be a fly on the wall to this hilarious creation story!

What inspired you to write the book? A particular person? An event?

The last two years I’ve been writing God Creating Animal jokes on Twitter developing a pretty devoted following. I eventually noticed of all my jokes, the God/Animal jokes always did the best; people loved them! Also my followers kept stating they would read my jokes to their kids and their kids loved them too.  Finally enough people asked me to write a book I began to take the interest seriously. The final piece to the puzzle happened as I was reading my children bedtime stories, I noticed they wanted to hear the same stories over and over again and I thought to myself it would be pretty neat if my kids wanted to read something I wrote that much. Next thing I know I had taken a joke concept from Twitter and turned it into a children’s story with a hint of humor for the adults.

What’s the main reason someone should really read this book? 

My book God Creates a Snake is meant to entertain kids of all ages with its bright vibrant pictures and adorable snake facts. At the same time I wanted a bit of humor only the adults reading the stories would understand. Think the children’s book version of Shrek. I hope it becomes a much a cherished part of your night-time routine, I know it has in my house! I wish you all happy reading!

What’s the most distinctive thing about the main character?  Who-real or fictional-would you say the character reminds you of?

God is a PURPLE Galaxy and Snake has no legs!

If they made your book into a movie, who would you like to see play the main character(s)?

Morgan Freeman as God and the snake from the Jungle Book (Kaa) as the snake.

When did you first decide to become an author?

About 10 minutes before I wrote this book lol.

Is this the first book you’ve written?

Yes.

What do you do for work when you’re not writing?

I’ve been in the Army for the last 18 years.

How much time do you generally spend on your writing?

Since I consider joke writing on Twitter to be formal writing and I try to write two jokes a day for my followers, I’m going to say I spend roughly an hour a day every day on writing.

What’s the best and the hardest part of being an indie?

The best part of being an Indie is the timelines and control you have over your own product, there is no wait time when it comes to executive level decisions about your book, it literally begins and ends with you. The downside is of course the lack of reach that traditional publishing can provide you.

What’s a great piece of advice that you can share with fellow indie authors?

Build your platform [your audience] as best you can before you try to self-publish. Just having a book published isn’t going to be enough, having a successful book is so much easier when you have a blog or a social media account of people who have already said “yes I like what you do and I will purchase your work”. You can write the next great novel but if no one ever sees or knows you wrote the book it’s all for naught.

Would you go traditional if a publisher came calling?  If so, why? 

Yes I would. I didn’t self-publish my first book solely to make money. I wanted to establish it as the first in a series of God Creating Animals Children’s books. Traditional Publishing combined with good marketing on your end can be an awesome recipe for success.

Is there something in particular that motivates you (fame? fortune?)

I want my children to be proud of me. I want them to be able to tell their friends “that’s my dad and this is his book!”

Which writer, living or dead, do you most admire?

100% Malcolm Gladwell. I just want to be his friend so I can sit around drinking coffee and pick his brain. He is an amazing writer and his books are equal parts provocative and informative.

Which book do you wish you could have written?

Anything written by Gladwell (Blink, Tipping Point and Talking to Strangers) oh and The Harry Potter series, though the world would be much worse off if I had written them lol.