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Publishing In Retirement, A First Standalone Novel, And An Escape Room Experience: Celebrating ALLi Member Milestones

Publishing in Retirement, A First Standalone Novel, and an Escape Room Experience: Celebrating ALLi Member Milestones

Goal written on desk Member Milestones imageThis regular post from the Alliance of Independent Authors celebrates success stories from across our members as inspiration for our indie author community. This time  we celebrate first standalone novels, publishing after retirement and an innovative escape room experience based on historical fiction books. A big congratulations to those featured in this month's Member Milestones: February 2024. 

Do you have a member milestone to share? 

We are always looking to hear from our members about your achievements; from those of you who are just setting out, to our most experienced Authorpreneurs. Whatever your achievement, if you are a Member of ALLi, please tell us about your recent success stories using this form. We will share a selection of stories each month with our members and our wider indie author network.

Rick Shaw MemberAssociate Member: Rick Shaw

“I'm a retired higher ed technology executive turned author and consultant. I love the running joke that I'm a professional liar who creates and kills people for the entertainment of others.” You can find Rick on Facebook and LinkedIn.

Member Milestone:

I was one of those socially advanced high school kids who was bored out of his mind, barely graduated, and unable to write effectively. I didn't learn to write until I got out of the Air Force and was taken under the wing of an exceptional English professor at my local community college. His talent for coaxing out the very best in his students gave me the skills to pursue both an academic career and my professional career as a technology manager. Now, after over thirty years of driving technology operations in higher education and media, I'm retired, consulting, and pursuing my writing full-time. Not bad for a kid who was told he couldn't write by a high school English teacher.

In June and September of 2023, I published my first two novels. The Tunguska Deception, published in June, is an action-adventure, alien-possession, political thriller. My second novel, Genesis Renewed, is Book 1 in the Genesis Renewed Saga and was published in September. A near-extinction event drags a history teacher into the role of protector and leader of a small band of survivors on the North American west coast.

What have you learned?

Self-doubt, the imposter's syndrome, is universal. We all struggle with these challenges. Push yourself. Take a chance and hit that publish button. Six months after doing so for the first time, I'm getting the biggest kick out of seeing daily sales of my work. I'm working on getting past the ‘really, from me' syndrome when someone asks you to sign your book.

Melissa Addey small headshotAuthor Member: Melissa Addey

Melissa is an author of historical fiction with a Creative Writing PhD, and is the ALLi Campaigns Manager. You can find Melissa on X (formally Twitter)

Member Milestone:

I have an escape room opening in Leeds (UK) based on my books, I'm very excited about it. It's a collaboration with Locked In Games and is called The Dragon Throne, based on my historical fiction books, the Forbidden City series. You can find out lots more here: The Dragon Throne.

I've wanted an escape room based on my books since I first saw/played a room. It's been fascinating to collaborate with other creatives including the games masters who designed the puzzles based on characters and stories I provided and the theatre designer who created the space based on my historical research.

What have you learned?

That you should look out for playful and creative things to do outside of your comfort zone, because it really lifts your creativity.

Adeena MignognaAuthor Member: Adeena Mignogna

Aerospace engineer by day, sci-fi wordsmith by night. With 25 years in satellite design and a flair for interstellar storytelling, Adeena Mignogna is shaping orbits and narratives alike. You can find Adeena on Facebook, LinkedIn and X (formally Twitter).

Member Milestone:

My first standalone novel, Lunar Logic, was released this past week! I am proud of it because so much work goes into not just writing a book, but producing a book.

What have you learned?

I learn new things each time I put out a new book. Tools and processes that are working for me, new ways to market the book, etc. and this one has taught me lots too.

Hands in the air for Member MilestonesNot yet an ALLi member?

The Alliance of Independent Authors (ALLi) is a global membership association for self-publishing authors. A non-profit, our mission is ethics and excellence in self-publishing.

Everyone on our team is a working indie author and we offer advice and advocacy for self-publishing authors within the literary, publishing, and creative industries around the world.

All the membership options and benefits, including free access to our collection of self-publishing advice ebooks, are on our website. Take a look and join us today.


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