Thursday, February 19, 2015

Spotlight on Joe Hickey

This new father of premie baby boys is asking for some crowd funding help. Joe Hickey is a good friend of mine and needs our help. Please give whatever you can. Here is the link for your convenience. Thank you, God Bless.

SAGINAW, MI -- Saginaw author Joe Hickey is a busy man.
He is a new father of twin boys, who works a full-time job in retail sales and spends his free time pursuing his passion for writing.
Hickey's latest project, "Secret Seekers Society and the Wrath of Wendigo," is his fifth book and the third in his "Secret Seekers Society" series. He expects to release it by June.
"I'm just finishing up the last two chapters of the book," he said.
Hickey books 
The 33-year-old graduate of Arthur Hill High School and Saginaw Valley State University, who publishes his work under the name J.L. Hickey, specializes in young adult fantasy. His "Secret Seeker Society" books are centered around a set of orphans, based on his niece and nephew, who become involved with a secret society of monster hunters.
He recently launched a Kickstarter campaign to help fund the publication of his latest work. It's an approach he has taken three times before.
According to Hickey, his work to promote himself as an independent author has paid off recently.
"It's been a really good year for me," he said. "I've been networking like crazy."
In August, Hickey had a book signing at The Barnes and Nobel location in Saginaw Township. He sold out of books during the event.
"Barnes and Noble has already invited me back," Hickey said. "I want to have a release party for the new book."
Another milestone came in November, when the second book in his series, "Secret Seekers Society and the Beast of Bladenboro" snagged the eighth place spot in the World's Best Story contest.
Hickey is also having some success with Amazon.
"My first book is off and on Amazon best-sellers list," he said.
He is started to see some income from the Amazon sales. When Hickey did a free giveaway of his last release, he subsequently sold hundreds of copies of his first book in the "Secret Seekers Society" series.
"That doesn't sound like a lot, but compared to the competition it's a lot," he said. "I'm doing really well for an independent author."
All that stands in the way of his release of "Secret Seekers Society and the Wrath of Wendigo" is $1,600 that will finance the finishing touches.
"What this Kickstarter really does is it pays for editing, formatting and the cover art," he said.
As of Friday, Feb. 13, the campaign had gained pledges totaling $659, which is more than 40 percent of the goal. Pledges are accepted until 11:23 a.m. Sunday, March 1.
While Hickey continues to put his own money into producing the books, family, friends and strangers have contributed more than $3,000 to help finance the previous two "Secret Seekers Society" books.
"About 50 percent of the people I know," he said. "And the other half are fans of mine that I've met through networking."
With a goal of writing three more installments in the series within the next 3 years, Hickey hopes his book sales will eventually completely finance his upcoming projects.
"I will finish this series," he said.
For more information on Hickey's novels, visit the J.L. Hickey Facebook page. Hickey also encourages writers at every level to partake in his Facebook group Positively Indie.
-- Jessica Shepherd is an entertainment reporter with MLive

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