For the month of September, we are thrilled to introduce you to Mark, one of our team’s gifted book-marketing associates. In this interview you’ll learn what keeps Mark inspired creatively, what a typical day at Tellwell looks like for him, and how he enjoys spending his free time when he’s not bringing author visions to life!
Tell us a bit about yourself!
Hey there! My name is Mark and I’m one of the book-marketing associates here at Tellwell. I recently celebrated my first work anniversary with the company in July.
My journey in the marketing world began back in 2018. I kicked things off by working in digital marketing for a jewelry brand. After that, I took a detour and worked as a consultant in the government sector. Now, I’m thrilled to be a part of the amazing Tellwell team as a book-marketing associate.
What does a typical day look like for you?
My workday starts with my ritual cup of coffee. With my caffeine fix in hand, I dive into the day ahead. Firstly, I go through emails and over my to-do list, ensuring that no important tasks in my book-marketing projects are missed.
As a book-marketing associate, my role is all about collaboration. I work closely alongside our marketing consultants, offering a helping hand whenever they need it. Whether it’s creating book backgrounders, designing promotional materials, setting up ad campaigns, organizing book blog tours, or tackling various other marketing tasks, I’ve got my hand in the mix.
I also take care of our website section. It’s my responsibility to keep track of website renewals for our authors, providing them with prompt, helpful responses to any website-related queries, and keeping their websites updated.
In a nutshell, my days are a blend of coffee, collaboration/teamwork, and ensuring that our authors’ book-marketing journeys are as seamless as possible.
At Tellwell, we’re proud of the teamwork that makes book publishing happen, and at the forefront is Charlene, one of our skilled book-project managers!
Let’s explore her drive and inspirations, and how she makes books come alive. Join us to uncover the person behind the role and feel her dedication in every project.
Tell us a little about yourself.
My name is Charlene, but I’m used to being called by my nicknames: Yen or Charlie. And since I belong to a medical family, I hold a degree in nursing, but haven’t really practiced it.
I am both spontaneous and meticulous. I plan the small activities I need to do before starting a new day (what time to wake up, shower first or breakfast? Movie or reading?) Yet, so far I have never planned the huge things in my life (the major I took in college, my travel experiences, past jobs). Amazingly, things always turn out great!
My family and friends see me as the go-getter, but I feel otherwise. I just feel like I really do not show my full potential to people. And when I feel comfortable with something, I just stop there and make it a habit. But looking back, I think I had left my comfort zone a lot of times but never recognized it.
I am a dog lover! I am always happy to talk about the times I pet sit.
I’m a homebody, but not really. I can stay inside my box-like room for a week without complaining (as long as I have food, internet, music to listen to, movies to watch, books to read). But there are times that I crave traveling—I really want to explore places that are unfamiliar to me. Experience their culture. Taste their food. Have interesting chats with other travelers. It just feels so liberating!
For July’s Meet the Team we are proud to introduce Trixie Raboy, one of Tellwell’s Book Marketing Associates! Read on to learn more about what Trixie enjoys most about working with our authors, as well as some of the adrenaline-inducing activities she enjoys outside of work!
Hello Trixie!Tell us a little bit about yourself!
Hi, I’m Trixie Raboy! I’m one of Tellwell’s Book Marketing Associates and recently just passed my one year anniversary with Tellwell. I have been working in the marketing industry for around five years now which has included working in the hospitality industry, logistics, and now book publishing.
What does a typical day look like for you at Tellwell?
I work a night shift at Tellwell to ensure my client availability for those located around the globe. I start my day at 11pm with my mandatory cup of coffee, and then review my to-do list and check my emails and messages. My responsibilities include book-marketing services along with creating content for Tellwell’s social media, so I typically alternate days between social media content creation and book-marketing deliverables for our authors.
What is your favourite part about working at Tellwell?
I actually have three favourite things about working at Tellwell!
For starters, the people I work with are simply amazing. It really is wonderful to work with people who are so supportive, collaborative, and easy to get along with. I of course have to make a special mention of my partner-in-crime, also an amazing Book Marketing Associate, Mark Mionda, who’s so enjoyable to work with.
My second favourite aspect is the ability to work from home. For someone who lives further from our office, it’s very convenient to complete most days from the comfort of my home office. Occasionally, our team meets up at the office to check in with each other which is a great opportunity to connect with everyone in person.
And lastly, the overall experience of working with Tellwell has been nothing short of enjoyable. In just one year of working as part of our marketing team, I have accumulated a wide range of experience and enhanced my pre-existing skillset. I love the fact that I get to work on different projects that allow me to continue to develop my skills and knowledge!
Find out how Melissa helps get authors on track and ready for book production and her life down under!
In the world of independent publishing, there are heroes who work tirelessly behind the scenes to bring authors’ visions to life. One such luminary is Melissa Barker, a talented publishing consultant at Tellwell. With her extensive experience and keen eye for detail, Melissa plays a crucial role in the book-production process, ensuring that every aspect of a manuscript is polished to perfection.
Join us as we unveil Melissa’s role in the book production process and gain insights into the life of a Tellwell publishing consultant from Australia.
Tell us a bit about yourself. Mmmm, where to start? I am a Pisces, and a Myers-Briggs ENFJ personality type. I have a love-hate relationship with coffee. I have stepped foot in 35 different countries. I have been known to hold a plank for 10 minutes. I am the health nut of my family and the ocean equally intrigues me and terrifies me. But the generic answer is: I am 41 years old and currently live in Melbourne, Australia. I am the eldest of 4 children, yet to have children of my own. I am studying counselling and brain-body medicine, and have immersed myself in the health and wellness space for well over 10 years, with interests in nutrition, psychology, human development, and spirituality.
What do you enjoy most about your role? Definitely being able to connect with authors on a deep level and supporting and nurturing them, helping them feel safe, heard, and less overwhelmed. I love hearing the tone of excitement and passion in their voices as they explain their story to me.
What does a typical week look like for you at Tellwell?
Most days are the same: a mix of starting the day checking Slack and emails, then assessing new leads and making outbound calls, receiving any inbound calls and consulting with potential authors about their book and publishing needs.
What is a question you get asked the most by authors? How do you answer it? “How much will it cost to publish my book?” Closely followed by, “So, what are the next steps?” If an author is inquiring about the costs without us having discussed anything about their book, or about the process at all, I use it as an opportunity to explain that it depends on their goals, the needs of the book, and their budget.
I segue into the milestones that each book will journey through on it’s way to being published, and how the costs involved will depend on the depth of service required through each of those steps. I always like to provide a clear path ahead for an author when it comes to the next steps. I explain that once we have identified the service requirements and settle on a package together, they will then receive an invoice from me with a payment link for them to process their own secure deposit.
From there I am guiding them through the practical steps that cross the bridge into production, and meeting and connecting with their project manager.
Do you have an achievement that you are most proud of? What inspires you to succeed? I often think that, as a whole, we underestimate how much of an achievement it can be to make it through some of life’s most tragic or challenging experiences, and come out the other side a better person with a kind heart. So for me, I am proud to have made it through some of my own personal life challenges still intact and more resilient and wise. And always with compassion and appreciation for this life. My inspiration to succeed is always driven by proving to myself that I can do hard things, and to live a life that I am proud of while being the best person I can be to myself and others. Aiming to live up to my potential inspires me.
What do you enjoy doing most outside work? I’m a nature girl, so getting out into the mountains and the trees and exploring new tracks. Cooking. Or learning all about the human body, health, psychology and why us humans are the way we are and do what we do. And drinking coffee, reading, or writing.
Australia is known for its exotic wildlife. What is your favourite Australian animal? Hahahaha—me! But I will say that baby kangaroos are pretty cute and adorable.
Do you have any good books to recommend? Argh . . . too hard. But I think that The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho is a sweet story and a classic for any age.
To start, tell us a little bit about yourself and your role at Tellwell.
My name is Scott Friesen and I am big into almost all sports, as well as travelling. My current sports pursuits include padel tennis and disc golf, but I am pretty much down for any sport. I have travelled to over 50 countries in the past ten years, and have worked abroad in countries like France, Spain, Mexico, and Colombia.
I have been a digital marketer for the last eight years and am going on two years working with Tellwell. At Tellwell I manage and assist with all things digital marketing, from online advertising and automation to sales funnels and our newly launched referral program.
Unlike some of our other Meet the Team features, your role is predominantly behind the scenes. Can you tell us what a typical day looks like for you?
The cool thing about Tellwell is that no day is typical. We are always testing and working on new projects to improve our online presence. Most days I will be reviewing our current online initiatives, analyzing the results of current campaigns and optimizing their performance. We are also constantly running new online campaigns. Operating in multiple countries and having so many different services in the self-publishing space truly gives us a large range of possibilities. I also generally spend time helping improve our automation, tracking, and analytics and helping out members of our team with the various software we use to make their jobs easier.
At Tellwell Publishing, we’re extremely proud of our team of experts who work tirelessly to help our authors succeed. One of these experts is our resident book-publishing consultant, Nelson Ty.
In this Meet the Team, we’ll be taking a closer look at Nelson’s role at Tellwell and learn more about the valuable contributions he makes to our team. So let’s dive in and get to know Nelson Ty a little better!
Tell us your background and how you came to work in book publishing.
I’ve mostly worked in sales all my life. I originally used to sell business and first-class airline tickets and due to the pandemic I had no choice but to switch options. Luckily book publishing is one of the better options here in Cebu to work with, so here I am 😀
What does a typical day working as a book-publishing consultant look like?
Mostly prospecting and keeping constant communication with authors. Making sure you I always have a healthy pipeline of clients.
How do you approach building and maintaining relationships with authors?
I present them with my natural personality in a strategic way. With every author I get a chance to talk with I always approach them with a process that I’ve developed toward closing a deal.
What changes have you seen in the book-publishing industry over the past years, and how are you able to adapt to these changes?
The publishing industry experiences business seasonality. Some months of the year will be tougher because some authors aren’t really in the publishing mindset yet, and some months will be extra rewarding. You just have to keep an open mind about these things and do what you do best everyday.
Can you share any advice or tips for authors who are looking to work with a publishing consultant?
Make sure they have a proven track record as a publisher and that you trust them. Just start your book project, because it can end in only two ways. Best-case scenario you’ll be a published author, and worst-case scenario you put everything on the back burner, and all those hours, days, months, or years of effort in creating the manuscript will be gone.
How do you and your team collaborate with other departments, such as editorial and marketing, to ensure the success of a book?
Book publishing is always a team effort, and that’s why I always make it a point to explain everything in full detail and set the right expectations to make sure everything is smooth sailing. And I always go the extra mile to help my authors transition to the production stage of their book.
What’s something about your role or your team that people might be surprised to learn?
I’m a very simple guy and I like to keep complicated things plain and to the point.
What do you enjoy doing outside of work, and how do you balance your personal and professional life?
I like everything fun. I’m basically a jack of all trades when it comes to my leisure in life.
Get pro tips from a Tellwell book editor on perfecting your manuscript & improving your writing.
Everyone should read, read, and then read more. It exercises the brain and improves mental health, but it is also great fun to lose yourself in another world for a few hours.
Kim Martins – Editor
If you’re an aspiring author, you know how crucial it is to have your manuscript polished to perfection before submitting it to publishers. That’s where manuscript editor Kim Martins comes in. With years of experience under her belt, Kim has edited a wide range of genres and helped numerous authors refine their writing. In this exclusive interview, Kim, an Australian editor based in New Zealand, opens up about her inspiration for becoming an editor and her all-time favourite books, and shares valuable tips and advice on how authors can improve their writing and increase their chances of success.
Can you tell us about your role as a book editor at the publishing company? What are your responsibilities, and what does your typical workday look like?
I edit everything from poetry collections to memoirs and novels in most genres, and it is a joy to work with authors. My typical workday begins around 8.00 a.m., and it might include a manuscript evaluation, paying close attention to story structure and character arc. Or it might be a substantive edit of a novel, which means I look at the manuscript broadly and help the author with things like pacing, clarifying plot points or possibly ambiguous sentences, whether the narrative is being lost due to unnecessary inclusion of too much information, and so on.
Because the editing process is thorough, I might also work on manuscripts that have been through a substantive editing round and have now moved to the copy and line edit. With copy editing, grammar, spelling and punctuation are looked at as well as fact-checking, while line editing involves tightening up sentence structure so the language is sharp.
As an author, you may already be aware that the hard work of writing a great book is just the beginning, and promoting it effectively can be quite a real challenge.
This is where Lesley Morrison, a book-marketing consultant for Tellwell, can help you! With years of experience working with authors, Lesley knows how to develop marketing strategies that work and can assist you in standing out in a competitive market. In this meet-the-team interview, we will chat with Lesley about the art of book marketing and how you can use her expertise to promote your book.
Can you tell us a bit about yourself and your background? How did you become interested in book-marketing consulting?
As a published author, I realized the importance of knowing how to market a book in a saturated and competitive market. Having some insider knowledge prompted me to find ways I could help others on the same literary journey and overcome the same challenges I faced.
What does a typical day in the life of a book-marketing consultant look like? Can you walk us through your daily routine?
My day always starts with emails! I like to ensure no one is left hanging for answers. Typically I prioritize tasks that will have the greatest impact for authors in getting marketing underway. I keep close communication with my authors to let them know where things are at, and to get feedback on services I am working on if necessary. I save the most creative tasking (like promotional material design) for the evening when I do my best visual work.
Welcome to the world of Zar, one of Tellwell’s gifted in-house illustrators. As one of our newest team members, Zar has quickly become a top choice among authors looking to bring their stories to life. From his unique approach to working with authors to his expert insights on what to look for when selecting an illustrator for your book, this post is your chance to get to know Zar and discover how his talents can elevate your storytelling.
Tell us about yourself.
Hi, I am Eleazar Daligdig, also known as Zar and @zaroncanvas on IG, Twitter & Facebook. I am a visual artist & illustrator, the CEO of Zar on Canvas, an art director/illustrator of Dungeon Diaries, and a former art teacher at Artissimo Arthouse.
‘Tis the season to be jolly indeed! Meet Tellwell design-team member Gerardo Basilio. Read on to hear about his approach to book-cover and interior designs and how he adds whimsical or colourful touches to them!
Tell us about yourself.
I am Gerardo Basilio “GB” Faelnar. I have lived in Zamboanga City for almost 20 years and decided to become independent by going to Cebu after working in a startup in Zamboanga for a year. I graduated from Ateneo de Zamboanga University, where I was given a basic introduction to InDesign. The IT courses were more about web design and computer animation, so I put my feet in deep water when I applied and got hired by Tellwell.
I am really thankful to the design team for giving useful tips on solving certain obstacles I encountered since day one. Also, just throwing this out here, I have a twin!
What did you do before joining the Tellwell team?
I was an in-house web designer for a US-based company before joining Tellwell. Every design my employer needed was done by me, but no books. My first book-designing experience was with Tellwell, and I still find it fascinating to read the unique ideas that authors want to incorporate into their designs. I look forward to reading more creative briefs with out-of-this-world ideas.
What do you enjoy most about your role?
I enjoy creating cover designs and hitting the right expectations as requested by the author. I also enjoy creating creatures or characters for illustrations that are not common (putting life into something that is not yet discovered, imaginatively speaking).
I enjoy the times when an author asks me to if they can put my name on the book cover or interior. But most importantly, I enjoy making authors happy.
Where do you draw creative inspiration from?
When I go out on errands or buy groceries, I try to find time to go to bookstores and look at the trending books. I browse through the internet to look for inspirations, too. I visit Pinterest, Dribbble, and Canva, and search for the top cover designs of a specific year/style. Also, re-reading the book description and author biography gives me outside-of-the-box ideas.
What type of book covers do you absolutely love doing?
I am still looking for a genre to focus on, but I keep in mind that using only one specific hat will hinder me from growing. By adapting to other genres I am able to create a variety of covers, which is a must-have skill for any designer. This skill can be applied to other mediums as well.
So, to answer the question specifically, I like doing photo-manipulated covers, as it helps sharpen my Photoshop skills.
Why is it important for an author to take their time to consider and review the interior of their book?
Even though the interior may look perfect now, there will always be a tiny error (it may be an extra period or space, or a missing comma) that the designer or editor might have missed. Taking your time at every step of the process will definitely be worthwhile, as you learn new things about book publishing and in return help Tellwell staff better understand the story behind your book.
What advice do you have for authors working with a book designer?
Keep instructions/description short and concise
Expect colours to be different from your original file submission
If you have a detailed costume for a character on your cover with a specific pose, a creature that no one has seen yet and so on, then its an illustrated cover
Properly plot corrections/instructions on revision PDFs
How does interior design help elevate a book?
A well laid out interior can help readers understand the content of a book better. Even small details when added on plain text, like an image or icon, will greatly help readers visualize an object or character better. Using different font sizes and styles will give hierarchy and help with flow for the readers. The striking effect that the author wants to exhibit will still be there even if there are no pictures.
What are some of the favourite projects you have worked on?
Premium covers: I can create my own designs while honouring the author’s requests, so hopefully they’ll like my idea better than the original concept.
Illustrations projects, especially my first illustrated book, entitled Cheeky Dog Duke.