inkpopper of the Week: Mandybeth
Posted by inkpop on April 5, 2010
That’s how inkpop writer Mandybeth (aka Amanda Abram) feels about the success of her book, The Importance of Getting Revenge on inkpop.com, the community site that’s on the hunt to find the best new books in teen lit.
The Maine author found some success with the romance-comedy novel on other literary sites, but it was clearly inkpop’s most popular project in March 2010—the community ranked it the number-one Top Pick. The Importance of Getting Revenge is now in the hands of the inkpop Editorial Board, which will review the book in consideration for a publishing contract. In early May, the Editorial Board will share its critique with Mandybeth here.
Outside of inkpop, Mandybeth has achieved success in visual art—her artwork and photography have been featured on album covers for “pretty obscure bands” and better-known book covers (more on that in a minute).
inkpop: The Importance of Getting Revenge is actually your second book—can you tell me about your first novel?
Mandybeth: The first novel I finished is called Once Bitten, which I completed a couple of years ago, and is about a young woman who is a vampire hunter of sorts. The book is a murder mystery that just happens to involve vampires and supernatural beings. I had planned on making it into a series but pretty much gave up after the first one. It’s kind of depressing, because I wrote it before Twilight became big, and now everyone is starting to get a bit tired of vampire/paranormal stories.
But I’d like to think my book is a little different from others, especially since the human MC’s love interest is another regular human being, not a vampire or a werewolf! I often refer to that book as “my baby” because so much of my blood, sweat, and tears went into writing it, and I think it will always be my favorite.
Can you tell us about your screaming success with The Importance of Getting Revenge?
I was actually so surprised that The Importance of Getting Revenge became as popular as it did. When its rank broke 100, I was ecstatic but didn’t expect to get much further than that.
I had originally posted the story in its entirety up on FictionPress a while back, where it had developed a modest following, but I eventually removed it when I discovered that some girl had simply copied and pasted the story onto another site and claimed that she had written it. I was a bit discouraged after that. But then after taking a short hiatus from writing, I discovered Authonomy.com—where the book never broke a rank of 200, but was the “most shelved” book until I removed it. And then eventually inkpop—both sites made it harder to just select text and copy it.
As for how the story came to me, I actually have no idea! The plot and characters came to me as I was typing, so I had never planned any of it beforehand. I just started writing it out-of-the-blue one evening when I was experiencing some particularly bad writer’s block with Once Bitten. That book’s plot was a lot heavier, so it was refreshing to take a break and write something fun and fluffy for a change. And it was so easy to write, for the first half of the novel I was popping out one chapter a day. It was crazy!
Two covers of Amelia Atwater-Rhodes novels, Persistence of Memory and Token of Darkness. I’ve been uploading my artwork to deviantArt.com for five years, and a few months ago, a Random House art director happened to stumble across my account and thought that two of my pictures would be perfect to use for the covers.
I have to say, it’s pretty exciting to see an image I created sitting on the shelf of my local bookstore. It’s also exciting to see my name printed on a published book, even though it’s just as the cover artist and not as the author!
What’s the most interesting thing about you that people might not know unless you tell them right now?
I’m like a walking medical dictionary. I used to be a huge hypochondriac—still am at times—and my favorite book for a while was The Merck Manual. Every time I felt the slightest sniffle coming on, I consulted what I referred to as “my bible” to see what might have been the cause. Over time, I’ve gained a vast knowledge of all sorts of diseases, viruses, and other assorted conditions and their symptoms, and I am often trying to diagnose friends, family, and co-workers when they are not feeling well. Now that I think about it, that might actually be more insane than interesting!
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This post was written by Amy Schroeder (aka inkpopAmy)