Amber Argyle grew up with three brothers on a cattle ranch in the Rocky Mountains. She spent hours riding horses, roaming the mountains, and playing in her family’s creepy barn. This environment fueled her imagination for writing her debut novel.
She has worked as a short order cook, janitor, and staff member in a mental institution. All of which has given her great insight into the human condition and has made for some unique characters.
She received her bachelor’s degree in English and Physical Education from Utah State University.
She currently resides in Utah with her husband and three small children.
Her first novel, Witch Song, comes out Sept 1st 2011 by Rhemalda Publishing.
Your debut novel, Witch Song, will be available nationwide on September 1st. Do you have any plans for a book release party? How does it feel to see Witch Song released into the wild?
We’re just starting to make plans for the launch party. So far, we’ve scheduled Sept 12th at the Hyrum City Library in Utah from 7 until the party winds down. I’m going to have treats and give away a book. Everything else is top secret (basically because I have no idea what else is going on ;) ).
A few months ago, I often had random moments of panic: “Oh my gosh! My book’s coming out! What if it gets bad reviews? What if it doesn’t sell? What if …” You get the idea. But it’s done so well so far, I’m not too worried anymore.
Witch Song is doing well on quite a few Goodreads lists including “2011 YA Debut Authors”. It’s also on “It’s All In The Eyes”, “Best cover” and “Best illustrated Book Covers” which is to be expected, the cover is enchanting. Did you have any part in selecting the book cover?
I actually had quite a bit to do with it. I wrote an entire post including mock-up pics at Rhemalda. Basically, I chose a piece I was in love with. My publisher agreed and sent it to Rhemalda’s artist, Eve Ventrue. She took what I liked about the piece—the innocent, vulnerability, underlying strength, and haunted look and transformed it into a masterpiece. I was able to look at each mock up and express what I thought was working and what wasn’t. Between the three of us, we were able to come up with what you see now. ☺
The first time I heard about you and your book was on a Q/A session with The Six - Brodi Ashton, Emily Wing Smith, Bree Despain, Valynne Nagamatsu, Kimberly Reid and Sara Bolton. You were seeking marketing advice, and given the visibility of Witch Song on Goodreads, do you have any marketing advice for new authors? What worked and what didn’t?
Authors have access to something that most other avid readers often don’t—constant exposure to other authors. I decided to use this to my advantage. I’d buy books from authors with works similar to my own and then offer them up in a giveaway in exchange for my followers spreading the word about Witch Song. Some of these giveaways worked better than others. I found that giving away fantasy books by authors who had a big following BUT NOT ONLINE did me no good. Something like 95% of all book blogs are run by women. Most of those focus on YA, so it does little good to pick a fantasy book targeting male adults.
Can you give us some summer reading recommendations? Or books that will gear us up for Witch Song?
My top ten favorite books of the year and why:
I have to go with Unicorns. Not only because of my love of horses (and Unicorns are my dream horse), but because I wrote an entire story with Unicorns on steroids.
If you could invite one of your characters from Witch Song home for tea, who would it be and why?
My main characters love interest, Joshen. Though I’m too old for him, I’d be tempted to kidnap hi m and make him marry me. Oh, wait. I’m married. And Joshen’s fictional. Shoot.
If you want to know more about Amber - works in progress or whether she’s ever kissed a frog - you can read more on her blog!
Read my review of Witch Song.