The print-publishing world is shrinking by the second. Burlington resident and writer, Stephanie Haddad, knows how challenging it is to crack into the world of fiction these days with a continually imploding industry.
After studying Business Communications at Bentley University (minoring in Literature), marrying her high school sweetheart and having a baby girl together, Haddad began working towards her dream of becoming a published author, well aware of the challenges that laid ahead.
“I've been writing my whole life, from when I would write in my journal as a little girl, until now,” explains Haddad. “I've always been captivated by the power of telling a story, and I finished my first novel a few years ago.”
However, finishing a novel was only step one for Haddad, she wanted to get her piece out to a larger audience.
“I tried to find a publisher or agent myself, but it's very challenging,” mentioned Haddad. “I did some research and found out that more and more people in my position are going through these self-publishing channels. After all, I don't write to be a millionaire, I write to tell my stories.”
During this time, Haddad made ends meet by freelancing for Yahoo, and blogging. Haddad then took it upon herself to make her goal of being a published author a reality by self-publishing her first novel through the websites createspace.com and smashwords.com.
Haddad's first novel is called: A Previous Engagement. “The story is about two life-long friends who follow very different paths, and as life does, they find out there is more to their relationship as the novel progresses,” detailed Haddad.
When asked about her writing style and her take on the romance genre, Haddad said: “I think there are enough sad things in life, so when I read a book to entertain myself, I want a positive feeling, I think the novel expresses that good feeling […] The genre itself can be empowering for females, although I go for a more true to life experience than the classic romance novel […] my characters have flaws people can relate to.”
“Even though I'm an unknown,” continued Haddad, “I hope people will take a chance with the world of self-publishing as it offers a cheaper option to summer reading and supports lesser-known authors.”
Before leaving, Haddad mentioned that she is teaming up with the folks at True North Coffee Cafe over on 204 Cambridge Street here in Burlington. Sunday, August 13, From 9 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., Haddad will be signing and selling copies of A Previous Engagement. Mark your calendars and pop by to support this local talent.
Readers can also find Haddad's Patch column every Saturday at 2 p.m. on Burlington Patch.