Indie Writer: MaryAnn Clarke

MaryAnn Clarke (aka MA Clarke Scott) is an indie writer veteran, writing adult novel length stories since 2005. She has won the Chatelaine award twice. She writes in the romance women’s literature genre and has written four books, available as paperback and Kindle Unlimited. You can follow her on her website (where she has a free book offer), Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Goodreads, and Bookbub.

If you’re a fan of Kristan Higgins, Sophie Kinsella, Emily Giffin and Helen Hoang, you’ll love her books. 

Having it All – Romantic WF novels

Life is a Journey

  • The Art of Enchantment: a Life is a Journey novel, Chatelaine Grand Prize,
  • A Dissimulation of Doves: a Life is a Journey novel, Chatelaine Award (currently unpublished. May be published with a new title. Stay tuned and follow her.)
  • A Forged Affair: Life is a Journey Book 2, due out 2019, available as a preorder Until June 14, 2019; for the modern, independent woman. If you like quirky, well-rounded characters, relatable situations, and lyrical prose, then you’ll love this women’s fiction tale of self-discovery from MaryAnn Clarke.
  • A Forged Affair Coloring Book: pre-sale bonus

Free Book Available: Single Dad in Studio 7D if you sign up for her newsletter. She promises no spam, emails only relevant to women’s fiction, and that you can unsubscribe at anytime.

What was the inspiration for your two series?

My Having it All series grew out of my first published book – Reconcilable Differences (soon to be retitled and reissued as Making You Mine Again). As I worked on it, created my fictional community and populated it, I really wanted to know more about all the characters in the story. In the process of getting to know them, I realized that I really liked them, even the antagonists. Once you get inside a character, and understand where they come from, and what they want and need, and what they need to learn to get that – then you want to prolong that relationship. Each of my books in the Having it All series is the story of one or more of its secondary character with whom I’ve fallen in love. Once I understood them, their wounds and dreams, I had to follow through on that. To see how their stories turn out!

On the other hand, my Life is a Journey isn’t really a series at all. It’s a “series” of books all inspired by my travels, mainly in Europe–with the common premise of young women abroad who get embroiled in someone else’s problems, find themselves and discover love. I’ve always loved travel and have a love affair with European culture. The first three books in the series all grew out of extended family trips, to England, Italy and France. Though written in that order, the English book is not yet published. I have a few changes I plan to make before sharing it. But I realized I was never going to tire of travel, and that travel was always going to inspire my writing. So… Life is a Journey is a response to that. A way to expand and extend the joy travel gives me, and a way to share it with others. And also a really good excuse to travel more, since obviously, I have to research new locations to continue the series.

You weren’t always an indie writer. What made you want to change careers?  Why did you decide to become an indie writer?

I’ve always been a polymath, torn in many directions by my interests. I have a large appetite. I recall making a kind of life bucket list early on that had so many things on it, people (older wiser ones no doubt) used to laugh indulgently. Writing books has always been on the list, so it was only a matter of time.

I’ve managed to accomplish most of those things – some I may go back to when time permits. I went to university, became an architect, seguéd that into an academic research and teaching career in environmental gerontology, had a family, travelled the world, and wrote and published books. There have also been a few lesser but also satisfying extras in there – plant a garden, learn to sail, paint, play piano, bike long distance, live in a farmhouse in France, study abroad…oh, I never did play the cello or jump out of a plane, at least not literally.

Let it be noted I have been called a dilettante. The price of sampling many things is that sometimes you abandon something before it’s truly finished, and certainly long before mastery is ever achieved. There has been good, important and enjoyable work that I’ve done but bailed on earlier than perhaps I should have in order to pursue something new. That’s the prices of dilettantism. Or being a Renaissance Woman, as I prefer to call it. But taking a card from Da Vinci’s deck, I figure I’m only half done my time here, so I haven’t given up hope on the cello, or some of those other pursuits that need more attention. I expect I’ll spend my old age painting, gardening and playing music. Oh, and reading. Always reading. In the meantime, it’s been fifteen years and I have not tired of telling stories.

You have a book being released in June. What are you doing in preparation for the launch and post launch marketing?

I feel as though I’ve at least tried every single thing I’ve ever read about, heard about or learned in a workshop or from a book. But, perhaps, not in a systematic way. Recently, I decided I was ready to make a more organized effort to help my books get discovered and read. This is my fourth book, so I’m hoping that too will contribute to its success. I’m more of a proven commodity than I was. I also have a much clearer picture of my market niche than I ever did before. I think the quality has always been there in my books, but perhaps they weren’t packaged in a way that helped the right readers find them.

Toward that end, I’ve gone through a re-branding exercise, have an entirely new website, am retitling and recovering one of my series, have written and made available a new (lead magnet) novel to attract subscribers to my list by providing a more substantial sample of my writing. I’ve also put effort into enriching my social media platforms to attract and engage more followers and bring them into the fold of my readers’ community.

I’ve improved my welcome, my newsletter quality and engagement with subscribers. And finally I’ve planned the launch of my new book with more lead time than I typically have in the past to give it time to saturate the awareness of the market, to give fans and influencers a chance to shout about it and react to it, to secure early reader reviews, time the release, and I’ve created a really great pre-sale bonus to attract attention and reward those that jump on-board early, as well as share news about the new release.

I really love connecting with readers, and talking with them about the books they enjoy, mine as well as others in the genre. I hope to strengthen my connection with readers and writers in my community, through my newsletter, blog, FB page and Instagram. 

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4 thoughts on “Indie Writer: MaryAnn Clarke

  1. Thank you so much for interviewing me and featuring me on your blog today Michelle! It was great getting to know you and I hope to meet more members of your community. I look forward to more great content on your blog.

    1. MaryAnn. Thank you so very much in letting me interview you. You’re such a lovely person. And interesting. And what fun stories you’ve created! I hope we can do this again!

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