While out doing the weekly shopping, I had a chance encounter with author Kathleen McGowan and husband. She shared her adventure of getting her recent book, "The Expected One," (ISBN: 0743299426) published and sold despite being told that it couldn't be done.
This information may be more significant to authors looking to publish bound books, but are a few important things that directly relate to ebook authors.
Because there are two story lines in the book, one in present day and the other in ancient times, McGowan was turned down by one publisher after another. Determined, she self-published 2,500 copies and set up a web site to promote and sell the book.
To promote her book (& web site) she contributed postings to every forum and discussion group that related to the books theme. Sales of her self published book were excellent from both her web site and Amazon. What might have helped (IMHO) is the controversy that the book created. As her husband puts it, "Controversy is good as long as there are more people in favor of the book than against it."
Not content to settle for self publishing and Internet sales, McGowan sent out copies of her book to book agents. After three months from the time she started selling her book online an agent called. Her husband described the scenario, "The agent said he had read 100 pages and then called her because he knew it was a book he wanted to represent."
When asked if the Internet sales had anything to do with the agent Mr. McGowan said, "The agent didn't check out the web site or anything. He said it was the writing."
To coincide with the release of the bound book there are also abridged and unadbridged audio versions of the book. She said that when she was told that they wanted to cut the abridged version to 20% of the original book she told them that she didn't think it could be done and if they were going to do that she didn't want anything to do with it. Later an agreement was made that they would keep 50% of the book for the abridged version, but she still did not want to be involved in editing it for time.
Hopefully, Kathleen McGowan will be an inspiration to authors who have been told it couldn't be done.
You should have checked closer before posting about author Kathleen McGowan. In the first place, there are online sources that recount how she apparently knew this literary agent years before, and approached him to represent her book. Second, Simon and Schuster either misrepresented McGowan, or McGowan misrepresented to them the fact that this was NOT her first published book, not even her second. The first was a tell-all novel about Disney World. Something went very amiss and A lawsuit that centered around McGowan and the claims in her book followed. Whatever it was about, McGowan lost in court.
The second book was supposedly also the result of getting "channeled" information from a deceased person, namely Linda Goodman. But a court ruled that the information was apparently acquired while McGowan was hired as a secretary to help organize research notes left by Linda Goodman. Again, the courts ruled against McGowan and her claims.
Either these represent published works, as she states at her Wikipedia page, or they don't. If one statement is true, the other must be false. Did she publish before? Or didn't she?
Now we have McGowan claiming she never read the Da Vinci Code, or HBHG, or "Bloodline of the Holy Grail'." She claims she is a "grail" child who got her information channeled directly from Magdalene in the form of "visions." There seems to be a pattern of recurring visions here, that change according to what she is currently hyping.. In the next breadth, she also admits that she prowled forums in search of information and updates.
Yes, in fact she was remembered for years as a well-known internet troll (as one critic called her) . She also claims she was once a Wiccan priestess....oh, but that was another McGowan persona from years before..while she was making her appearance at forums for authors like Laurence Gardner (of 'Bloodline of the Holy Grail' fame) .
McGowan is still remembered because those forums became so disruptive they had to be shut down, and because there are entire passages in her book that contain information originally published in the old Gardner forum, you know, one of the books she claims she never read? She is still pedalling her old claims that her information for this new novel came "channeled" again.
The recent case of Timothy Frey and Oprah is an example to budding writers how important honesty is in this business. Holding McGowan up as an example to budding artists might be a little premature?
In the Timothy Frey case, t was rulled that there was gross falsification and both publisher and author were aware of these. Now they have to refund the book price to all who request it.
I have read "The Expected One." I'ts a terribly written and childish book that includes a lecherous wife-beating John the Baptist, and a confused Magdalene who marries Jesus as an afterthought, after losing her beloved John and carrying his head around to do penance. The book is really badly written, and even the plot is a mess. McGowan solidly trashes all Biblical heros and apparently only wrote this so-called autobiography about "Maureen Paschal" as an outlet to exalt herself and her "visions."
If I could get my money back for this book, I would. It's that bad. Shame on Simon and Schuster for allowing this.
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