Monday, February 11, 2013

Big News for Indies!

KAREN: Welcome Everyone! I hope all is well in your neck of the woods. We have a special guest here today from InD'Tale magazine and website. TJ Mackay is the publisher and editor of this fun, informative, and friendly new hangout for authors and readers. TJ, please tell us a little about yourself.

TJ MACKAY: I was born on a cold, rainy night a poor little.... (OK, not really, it was a hospital in L.A. in the middle of a sunny afternoon but what fun is that?!?)  I grew up in the middle of nowhere amongst lots of animals, open space and love.  I have had two consuming passions throughout my life, reading and music.  I carried a double major throughout college of English Education and Dance because of it and have pursued both careers simultaneously ever since!  I’ve taught, coached and judged dance teams and competitions throughout the West. I’ve also been an Elementary and Jr. High School music teacher and still keep some of my best students.  I’ve also worked as a reviewer and Special Features Editor in another national  (but traditional) magazine. I enjoy chasing my kids around to all their school and sports events and in my dream world, I would also have time to scrapbook, bake, and hangout with friends. :)

KAREN:What inspired you to start InD’Tale?

TJ MACKAY: While working in traditional publishing, I  became increasingly aware of the very talented authors that are not afforded media exposure simply because they choose to self or small publish rather than accept the strictures of mainstream publishing. This really concerned me and I started writing articles on the subject. Finally a good friend of mine said the fateful words, “If you really want to help them, why don’t you start a magazine of your own?”  Thus, InDTale Magazine was born (soooo tempted to say, ‘and the rest is history!’ but quietly refrained.)

KAREN:What can the authors and readers find at your site?

TJ MACKAY: Oh goodness, there is so much!  The site is actually set up to support the magazine.  It showcases all the wonderful talent that is being featured.  There are tons of book reviews, along with Jimmy Thomas and Tammy Grant’s informative and fun columns where you can interact personally with them.  You can watch short video snippets with each of the big name authors we interview.  There is the Creme dé la Cover contest that runs weekly with a LOT of free advertising at stake for the winners.  We are also hosting the annual RONÉ Awards for the best books and covers of 2012, so taking a minute to vote on those covers means a lot to the authors... Whew! That doesn’t even begin to cover it - I’ve missed all the promotions, give-aways and contests, along with all the other up close and personal tidbits... oh, just go poke around!  You’ll find so much to enjoy!

KAREN:Is the site only for Indie writers and Indie publishers?

TJ MACKAY: NO!  It is a site for everyone!  Although we only review Indie and small published books,  it is a site where everyone participates.  Traditional authors write some of our articles,  chat in our interviews etc. and everyone can vote and participate in our interactive fun.

KAREN:What will readers find interesting about your magazine? How much does it cost to have it delivered via email? How many times a year is a magazine issued?

TJ MACKAY: I hope readers will find everything interesting about our magazine  - at least that is what I’m working toward!  It has a new and completely innovative format (it comes just like a print magazine only in digital form with pages that make a sound when they turn and everything!)  Each month we have a featured, personal interview with a big name author - not just a question and answer but a real conversation where readers can get to know the personalities of their favorite authors. Then, of course there are always entertaining and educational articles, reviews that are hyperlinked for easy access to the books you are interested in... man, again the list can go on and on!

Because I sincerely want so much to help talented authors who are struggling to be seen, I decided to forgo charging for subscriptions for as long as we are able and try to monetize our costs with advertising alone. I can see that is going to become increasingly difficult as the magazine grows and the time and costs of publishing increase but, at least for now, subscriptions are free! 

InD’Tale publishes monthly, 10 months a year.  We publish a special double issue in Dec/Jan and July/Aug.

KAREN:Can an author submit an article to be published in your magazine? If so, what is the process?

TJ MACKAY: Oh yes!  We heartily welcome article submissions.  In fact, all articles that publish include, not only a short bio and picture of the contributor but are offered a free full page advertisement in the magazine (a $55.00 value.)

We are currently developing a page on our website where one can submit their articles easily simply by uploading them.  It is not completely functional yet, however, so anyone interested can just send their queries directly to me at:

KAREN: Do you offer interviews?

TJ MACKAY: Since we include only one or two featured interviews each month, those are invitation only.  We do run a special column, “Rising Star Spotlight” however, that highlights authors and industry professionals that have created a unique or creative idea that others may enjoy and benefit from.  If anyone is interested in being featured, they just need to contact me, again at:

KAREN:Your site also offers reviews for published books. How does the rating system work? (Heat levels and the star ratings)

TJ MACKAY: Our rating system is pretty straight forward - although slightly tougher just because they are professional reviews and held to a higher standard than the regular reviews seen on Amazon, Goodreads etc.  They run like this:

Our rating system is the standard 5 star rating system:
1.        5 =  exceptional 
2.        4 = excellent
3.        3 = good
4.        2 = fair
5.        1 = poor
6.        Half star ratings are included.
7.        Could Not Finish

We also rate the "Steam" or sex factor so readers can enjoy whatever level they are most comfortable with.  The criteria is as follows:
1 Steam Kettle =  Nothing but kisses
2 Steam Kettles = Passionate kissing,
3 Steam Kettles = Sex but the door is closed
4 Steam Kettles = Slightly steamy sex with some description
5 Steam Kettles = Steamy sex with somewhat graphic description
KAREN: Is there anything else you would like to tell the readers?

TJ MACKAY: Hmmm.... that is always one of those questions that immediately send the brain into nothing but white fuzz! I’m sure there are a million things I would like to say but every single one leaves the minute the question is asked!  

I guess the most important thing is my honest and heartfelt desire to help promote the wonderful, talented authors who deserve to be read.  This magazine has never been about money (obviously!) as odd as that sounds, it has been about passion.  A passion to write, to read and to lift the lives of everyone who experiences that same excitement in a beautifully written word.  Cheesy as that may sound, it is the unblemished truth. :)

Thanks so very much for allowing me to bluster away today!
TJ Mackay

KAREN: TJ, thank you for joining us today. I wish you and your magazine the best. 
Readers and Authors, please feel free to ask any questions or just say hello. TJ would love to hear from you.

Find all the latest news at InD'Tale at:
Click on the magazine photo above to browse the latest issue of InD'Tale magazine. Have fun!!


Caroline Clemmons said... Best Blogger Tips

Great post, Karen and TJ. I appreciate learning about InDTale. I'll go check out the magazine. Thanks for the info.

Karen Michelle Nutt said... Best Blogger Tips

TJ, Thanks so much for joining us today and telling us about all your exciting opportunities for authors.

The readers will enjoy your magazine, too. I downloaded my copy. I love the layout. It's easy to read, and the articles are interesting. I look forward to more to come. :)

Sandy L. Rowland said... Best Blogger Tips

This is a terrific idea! Thanks for putting it out there. I'm going now to check out your magazine link.
I was also born in LA. on a sunny day.

Thanks for sharing this.

Melissa Fox said... Best Blogger Tips

Great information on the magazine, and what a great resource for both readers and writers. Obviously a labor of love, and it shows. Thanks!

TJ Mackay said... Best Blogger Tips

Oh my goodness, Thank you so much for you sweet comments, ladies! I am so tickled you like the magazine. I look forward to getting to know each of you better!

Maria Grace said... Best Blogger Tips

The magazine is beautiful! It's great to get to know you a little better.

Linda Acaster said... Best Blogger Tips

Excellent post, and I'm already halfway through the magazine! Thanks to both of you for passing this on.

Kathy Wheeler said... Best Blogger Tips

Very informative. Thank you.

Rachel Rossano said... Best Blogger Tips

Great interview, TJ! I am glad I am not the only one who has a hard time answering the "Is there anything else you would like to tell the readers?" question. You did a wonderful job. :)

TJ Mackay said... Best Blogger Tips

LOL, Rachel! You brain just blanks out, huh!
@ Maria, you are such a sweetheart! You're next, you I've gotten my feet wet, watch out! ;)
@Linda and Kathy, thank you so much for taking the time to read and check InD'Tale out! It is sincerely appreciated. :)

Voracious Reader said... Best Blogger Tips

Great interview, TJ! I had no idea InD'tale Magazine was out there! *coughcough* ;)

Anonymous said... Best Blogger Tips

Great Interview! TJ you answered each question and I don't think you left anything out.
Karen it's GREAT that you are sharing InD'Tale Magazine with all your readers!
Know I am off to share this interview.

Danielle said... Best Blogger Tips

Great interview! Thanks for telling us about yourself and InD'Tale magazine, TJ!

Nicole said... Best Blogger Tips

What a wonderful way to get the word out on some of the newer authors. There is such talent out there both writers and readers can really use something like this!

Karen Michelle Nutt said... Best Blogger Tips

@Melody PratYou're welcome. Please do share. :)

Karen Michelle Nutt said... Best Blogger Tips

@Linda AcasterYou are so very welcome.

Karen Michelle Nutt said... Best Blogger Tips

@Kathy WheelerYou're welcome. :)

Karen Michelle Nutt said... Best Blogger Tips

@Rachel RossanoYep, she did do a great job. :)

Karen Michelle Nutt said... Best Blogger Tips

@Voracious ReaderAren't you glad you do now?

Mimi Smith said... Best Blogger Tips

Great interview! Very informative.

Teej, now how did I not know you majored in dance as well? I'm so taking lessons someday.

Diane Craver said... Best Blogger Tips

I just learned about TJ and her wonderful magazine and website last week. Wonderful idea to help Indie authors and ones with smaller presses. Great interview and fun too - thanks Karen and TJ!

Anthony Jack said... Best Blogger Tips

I am in love with InD'Tale mag. It really has given me very useful information and is very entertaining. It is one of the few mags I read cover to cover.