Breaking the Story by Ashley Farley
Publication date: March 17th 2016
Genres: Adult, Suspense
Passion, peril, and a scandal that will rock American politics.
Scottie Darden’s life is a disaster. Her marriage has become toxic, and her career as a photojournalist has stalled out. To attract the attention of the main players in the news industry, she needs a standout story with a unique perspective. What she finds is a scandal that could turn the 2016 presidential election upside down. But before she can release her damaging images to the media, Scottie must uncover the truth behind the photographs. She turns to handsome mystery man Guy Jordan for help. When they join the campaign trail in search of answers, their investigation quickly becomes deadly.
Hop on board for a wild ride of adventure where desire ignites, lives are threatened, and secrets are revealed.
Her cell phone lit up on the seat beside her, and Brad’s name appeared across the screen. She reached for the phone and powered it off. The next time she communicated with him would be through an attorney.Scottie contemplated her options for a place to spend the night. Already approaching the fifty-mile mark, she couldn’t drive much farther on her spare tire. Her best friend, Anna, had been avoiding her since Christmas, since Scottie had inadvertently placed Anna’s husband in danger of losing his medical license. The rest of her friends would undoubtedly be spending quiet weekends at home, nursing their babies and making love to their husbands. She could drive to Church Hill to her brother’s house, where she knew she’d find a sympathetic shoulder to cry on. But Will would want all the details, and she wasn’t ready to give voice to her drama. Tonight, she needed time alone to think. Tonight, she needed to drink tequila.
She took a right-hand turn onto the Boulevard, drove one block, and then turned left onto Franklin Street. She parked under the portico in front of the Jefferson Hotel, handed her key to the valet, and went inside to the front desk. After booking the cheapest room available, she wheeled her suitcase around the corner and rode the elevator to the third floor. The consolation prize to having the smallest room in the most luxurious hotel in the city was the stunning view overlooking downtown Richmond.
Self-publishing in 2016
Why did you decide to self-publish?
I made a half-hearted attempt to find a literary agent with my first novel, Saving Ben, but I quickly grew impatient. With traditional publishing, from contract to publication takes a minimum of eighteen months. And that’s AFTER you secure a literary agent, which in itself can take years. Every literary agent I’ve ever heard speak, and I’ve heard a lot of them, share similar statistics. They receive thousands of queries every week, only to take on one or two new clients a year. With those kinds of odds, even Hemingway would’ve had a difficult time getting a contract with a traditional publisher.
How long does it take you to self publish a novel?
From first draft to Amazon shelf, if I work seven days a week, I can publish a book in six months time. Broken down—four months for writing and revising, four weeks working with my editor, and two months packaging, the book cover and interior formatting. That all adds up to seven months, but some of the process overlaps. I start working with the cover designer while I’m still in editing.
What do you love most about self-publishing?
I love the control I have over the process. I get to choose my own editor, cover, and advertising channels. I am an entrepreneur, creating and distributing books. And I love meeting like-minded authors. There are many talented writers making their way in the self-publishing industry today. That means more choices and lower prices for the reader.
What are the key ingredients for successful self-publishing?
Perseverance—Never, ever give up. If you believe in your novel, don’t abandon your characters. There are millions of writers in the world today. The ones who are successful are the ones willing to go the distance.
Strong story—Polish your craft. Reading novels and attending writing workshops are great ways to improve your writing skills. Practice makes perfect. Write at least a little bit every day.
Good editor—Hire the best you can afford. I go two rounds with my editor. The first is the manuscript critique—the big picture. The second is the line edit—the nitty gritty.
Great cover designer—Don’t bother with steps 1-3 unless you are willing to pay for a professional cover. Otherwise, you are wasting your time. No one will give your novel a second look without a stunning cover. You don’t have to spend a fortune. Shop around.
What are the biggest lessons you’ve learned about writing/self publishing?
Write the book you want to write. Writing is art, and art is subjective. If you ask twenty people for their opinions, you will get twenty different responses. I have a few beta readers whom I trust to give me feedback relative to my work and not based on their personal tastes.
Rules are meant to be broken. There are many rules in writing. Things like—not starting chapters with a character waking up from a dream, and not describing characters by having them look in the mirror. In today’s world of publishing, almost anything goes as long as it’s done tastefully.
Do you always know how your novel will end?
No! People ask me this all the time. When I begin plotting my novel, I seldom know how it will end. I create a character, blow life into her or him, and let them show me the way.Ashley Farley is a wife and mother of two college-aged children. She grew up in the salty marshes of South Carolina, but now lives in Richmond, Virginia, a city she loves for its history and traditions.
After her brother died in 1999 of an accidental overdose, she turned to writing as a way of releasing her pent-up emotions. She wrote SAVING BEN in honor of Neal, the boy she worshipped, the man she could not save. SAVING BEN is not a memoir, but a story about the special bond between siblings.
HER SISTER'S SHOES—June 2015—is a women's novel that proves the healing power of family.
Merry Mary—October 2015—a holiday novella, a young woman longing for a child stumbles upon a Christmas miracle.
BREAKING THE STORY is scheduled for release on March 17, 2016. A romantic political suspense. Passion. Peril. And a scandal that will rock American politics.