Local author gives downloads, donations
It’s been a whirlwind two years for Punta Gorda adult fantasy author Kristie Cook. She published her first adult fantasy novel, “Promise,” in July 2010, and her second, “Purpose,” that December. Next came “Devotion” and now “Power,” the fourth in her Soul Savers fantasy series.
Along the way, “Promise” won the 2010 Royal Palm Literary Award by the Florida Writers Association and by September 2011 was 58th on Amazon’s bestseller list. Cook also published a prequel novella, “Genesis,” that takes readers back 2,000 years to explain and tie elements of the books together. To date, she has sold 125,000 books and e-books.
While she’s pleased with her success, looking back it hasn’t been easy.
“There were many times I was frustrated, and wondering if I was doing the right things,” said Cook, who started her own independent publishing company, Ang’dora Productions, to publish the books. She promotes them through her websites, book fairs, signings and online media book blogging sites.
In early 2013, Cook will meet with prospective film developers in Los Angeles to discuss television and movie possibilities. Then she plans to attend the London book fair in April.
In many ways, Cook has spent a lifetime reaching this point in her career. She wrote her first story at age 8, a fantasy about gnomes who helped a brother and sister escape from a cave. She continued to write as a teenager, focusing more on teen themes. Then, after college, Cook turned to journalism as a writer and editor, and later a marketing and advertising specialist.
The idea for her books came to her about four years ago, and the characters poured out their lives onto her pages. She writes full-time now, and tries to keep to a writing schedule.
“Sometimes, though, I might get inspired at 11 p.m.
and write until 4 in the morning,” said Cook. “I used to let the characters tell me where to go, but now I have the plots and twists in my head and know what’s going to be in each book.”
Cook envisions a total of seven books in the Soul Savers series, with the possibility of more novellas.
This month, “Promise” is available as an e-book for free. And since October is both Breast Cancer Awareness Month and Domestic Violence Awareness Month, Cook is offering to match her readers’ donations. She raised nearly $2,000 over the summer for the National Domestic Abuse Hotline, and hopes to beat that number this month.
Cook’s advice to other aspiring writers is to not give up. “Whether you’re still writing and frustrated or trying to get published, stick with it if you really want to publish your book. It’s not an easy road. You need to have a good story and put the time in editing and revising. It takes a lot of sacrifice, but if you believe in it stick with it.”
Read more about Cook and her books, along with links to purchase them or download “Promise” for free, at KristieCook.com and soulsaversseries.com.