Episode 123: Adventures in Self-Publishing — Interview with Britt Alan

by Gabriela Pereira
published in Podcast

Hey there word nerds!

Today I’m delighted to have Britt Alan on the show, talking about self-publishing his debut novel: Tiananmen Ascending.

But before we dig into the nuts and bolts of writing and self-publishing, let me share a short anecdote that I think captures Britt’s longtime passion for that intersection between world politics and writing. When he was eight years old, he wrote the a letter to the Islamic Republic of Iran protesting the hostage crisis.

Since that time, he’s had 23 years of experience in international relations, communications, and the federal government. This knowledge has very much informed his debut novel, as well as his decision to self-publish.

In this episode Britt and I discuss:

  • How he came up with the idea for the inciting incident of his book, and how he’s able to get inside the minds of his villains and truly understand their motivations.
  • Why he proactively chose self-publishing and how he worked through the process of bringing his book to life.
  • A few of the nuts and bolts decisions he had to make as part of the self-publishing process, and why he made those choices.
  • Deciding which aspects of self-publishing (e.g. editing, cover design, interior design, etc.) to outsource and which ones to do yourself.
  • How he juggles a day job, a family, and self-publishing his books. (Hint: It’s all about discipline.)

Plus, Britt’s #1 tip for writers.

About the Author

Britt Alan’s interest in and concern about world politics started early when, as an eight-year-old child, he wrote the Islamic Republic of Iran to protest the Iran hostage crisis. The response sent to him by the Islamic Republic’s charge d’affaires, which he includes in the preface to his novel, introduced him to propaganda and years later inspired him to write Tiananmen Ascending.

Alan has twenty-three years of experience in international relations, communications, the federal government and Department of Defense Science and Technology agencies and programs. He is active in the defense science and technology community and is a member of the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association, the Project Management Institute, the American Marketing Association, and the Association of Proposal Management Professionals.

Alan lives in Washington, DC, with his wife of nineteen years and two children, and is currently at work on his next novel of Chinese aggression and deception. The first novel of this series, Tiananmen Ascendingis out now.

As with most books we recommend or discuss at DIY MFA, the link above is an affiliate link, which means if you decide to make a purchase via this link DIY MFA gets a small commission at no cost to you. Thank you for supporting DIY MFA!

To learn more about Britt Alan and his book, visit his website at brittalan.com or follow him on Twitter or Facebook.

Link to Episode 123

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Until next week, keep writing and keep being awesome!

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