a book review by a local author./to or to not self-publish

hey sometimes I meet people on the bus who aren't crazy and don't want to touch me or involve me in their Juggalo threesomes because I have a "soft voice" (REALLY). /disclaimer

that being said, I got a copy of the book Tigerman by Joseph Schweichler. Joey's trying to get a lot of buzz going for his novel, which is available both online and at the Erie Book Store. I read it and while I can say it's not something I'd probably pick up on my own, it definitely has an interesting premise and a good plot. if you're into comic books or graphic novels, you may want to pick it up.

The idea stemmed from his childhood, as he explained to me.

"I had a very vivid imagination," he said. And still does, apparently!

"I also have a deep love for tigers and had never seen a superhero based one," Joey went on to say. (a/n: I have to say I do not like tigers very much because they can kill me. but that is just me.)

He put a lot of effort into the idea for this novel, which he hopes to continue in a series.

"People will realize there are some historic elements in the book, such as the medallion which the main protagonist (J.D.) derives his abilities from is also coherent to ancient Egyptian mythology ... in terms of the Egyptains believed in wearing medallions and amulets as a source to channel animal spirits to make themselves more powerful," he said. And on a more personal level: "...a llot of the other material came from everyday life, .... I wanted him to go through a life changing experience and tell a good story above all else. J.D. has to come before Tigerman...so it was a natural step to give him a lot of problems, things people can relate to, you know girl problems, family problems everything that makes the characters more three dimensional and easier to relate to."

Which is true- the main character has a very turbulent life, which I think a lot of adolescents can see themselves in. And that's something all authors need to keep in mind. Know your audience!

I asked Joey why he went ahead and self-published his story. Some would say that's a controversial choice; self-publishing gets a lot of heat. However, it's really picking up steam these days. "This was something I had written when I was 12, I never let anyone read it out of fear it would put down. It wasn't until I read some to my neighbor that she told me "you had a gift and my story was absolutely beautiful. Also that if I didn't she would beat me with her 2x4... but she taught me that it was okay to let people read it and through that I decided that it was the right time to publish it."

Well I guess you either have to encourage people or threaten them with violence!

So best of luck to Joey as he furthers his artistic endeavors...he's got the right ideas, so I'm sure he'll go far.

As for self-publishing, I have to say I'm divided on the issue. I know it can be great in certain contexts....but you really have to be careful, I think. just use your judgment and make sure you find a good editor to read through your crap beforehand.

so would ever self-publish?

I don't know, this article makes me kind of a believer.

check it out for yourself

the Erie Book Store, which carries Tigerman and is altogether pretty cool!