Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Guest Post from Ekta Garg, Author of Two for the Heart

Please join me in welcoming Ekta Garg, an indie author with the first book in her brand new series, Stories in Pairs, releasing just last month! She's prepared a wonderful post on her journey to indie publishing so please enjoy, and be sure to continue for more information on her book Two for the Heart!

In 2014 authors self-published more than 450K books in both print and digital formats. So why would a person want to step into an arena this crowded?
Because whether an author chooses traditional publishing, indie publishing, or a hybrid model, getting published represents a summit in a writer’s career. When I decided in the summer of 2014 to begin indie publishing, I made a decision to start climbing the mountain and see the view for myself.
As a freelance editor I help other writers with their short stories and novels. I also follow the publishing industry by subscribing to newsletters. I get about 15 or 20 emails every day with articles, trends, and opinions. By reading about the industry and working with other writers, I learned what worked, what didn’t, and how fast the industry was changing due to the digital revolution.
Last year I asked myself how else I could stretch myself as a writer. It came to me in an “aha!” moment: I could start indie publishing.
The idea excited and terrified me. As I began brainstorming ideas, I also knew that I couldn’t do what everyone else was doing. I had to find a way to make my stories stand out. Good writing wouldn’t do it alone; dozens of indie published authors produce intriguing stories with compelling characters.
Part of planning my books came in the form of one of the realities of my life: with two elementary-aged children, I spend a lot of time on the go. I knew I didn’t have the time in my schedule to write full-length novels. But I did have time to write short stories. In today’s digital-forward world, short stories definitely have a chance to compete for the attention of readers. Smaller devices also lend themselves more easily to shorter fiction.
Keeping this in mind, I drafted and executed the first set of “Stories in Pairs”. The idea is simple: write a pair of short stories that share a theme and a link. Readers will know the theme from the title of each book, but in order to find the link they will have to read the stories. Possible links include things like characters who appear in both stories or a setting where both stories take place.
In my first book, Two for the Heart, readers get two short stories about the power of love and how this amazing emotion gives us the strength to make decisions and let others into our lives. The link comes in a shared character. A person mentioned in passing in the first story, called “The Proposal”, becomes one of the main characters in the second story, called “Remembrance”.
It became easy to expand the idea of pairs. Each book contains a pair of stories, and I plan to publish one book every two months. Readers will get two books each year about the same characters; in other words, Two for the Heart released in February, and in April readers will get more about the same characters in the book More for the Heart. I plan to continue this trend with the other “major” stories of the year: readers will get brand new stories in June with a follow-up book in August, and then the third pair of major stories will come in October with the follow-up book coming in December.
My main goal behind “Stories in Pairs” is to emphasize that our lives connect with other lives all the time, and we never know how big or small that connection might become. We can connect with others all across the world, thanks to technology, and we can connect and make an impact on people we meet in person as well as those we meet online. In the end, I don’t think we should ever take those interactions for granted.
To support this venture I launched my own publishing company. It’s called Prairie Sky Publishing, and I offer anyone who follows the site through the “Contact me” form a free book. Called Two to Say Thank You, readers can find it by going to:
As I continue to edit other writers’ work, write my own stories and prepare them for publication, and stay up to date with the publishing industry, I’m convinced of one thing:
The view from up here? It’ll take your breath away.
Two for the Heart
Release Date: February 3, 2015
Length: 77 pages
Available Formats: MOBI, ePUB, PDF
Genre: Short Stories/Women's Literary Fiction
Two stories about relationships and the power of love. Two stories with characters to remember. Two stories for the heart.

 “The Proposal”: Pooja and Akshay don’t want to bother with relationships, but they get cornered into marriage. The two devise a fool-proof plan: get married, then get their divorce papers ready. But will they have the guts to go through with the break up?
Remembrance”: Helen wakes up in the hospital, but she has no idea how she got there. Everyone dodges the question…and then the sister she hasn't spoken to in 11 years arrives. Why is she here? And will Helen ever remember what happened?

Buy the Book


About the Author

Since the start of her publishing career in 2005 Ekta has edited and written about everything from health care to home improvement to Hindi films. She has worked for: The Portland Physician Scribe, Portland, Oregon's premier medical newspaper; show magazines for home tours organized by the Portland Home Builders Association;; The Bollywood Ticket; The International Indian; and the annual anthologies published by the Avondale Inkslingers, based in Avondale, Arizona.
In 2011 Ekta stepped off the ledge and became a freelancer. She edits short stories and novels for other writers, contributing to their writing dreams. She is also a part-time editor for aois21, and she reviews books for her own book review blog as well as NetGalley and
Prairie Sky Publishing serves as the publishing arm of Ekta's professional writing blog, The WriteEdge.  When she's not writing, Ekta is a domestic engineer—known in the vernacular as "a housewife." She's married, has two energetic daughters who keep her running, and she divides her time between keeping house and fulfilling her writing dreams.
You can connect with Ekta on Twitter and Goodreads.

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