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Tran shares tips as successful author

MADISON– Madison native Amber D. Tran is one of the lucky ones … a writer who found her niche and has become a successful, published author.

As a fifth-grader, she realized writing allowed her to create her own world and characters. “That was amazing … that I could share it with others was an eye-opening opportunity,” Tran said.

Released in September 2016, Tran’s debut novel, “Moon River,” was a success. Her book received numerous 5-star ratings on Amazon and placed as a finalist in the Next Generation Indie Book Awards, National Indie Excellence Awards and Rone Awards.

“Moon River” relates the relationship between two children growing up in West Virginia. “They face various tribulations together, such as poverty, mental illness, sexuality and personal discovery,” Tran said.

In coming months, Tran will release “Fever,” a collection of short stories, essays and poems (Ardent Writer Press), and “Salt,” her debut chapbook of poetry about her relationships with her sister and mother (Shanti Arts Publishing). “A chapbook is a small collection of work, typically poems,” she said.

The tone of “Salt” ranges from sentimental to bitter, Tran said. “When I was younger, I was not close with my mother or sister. We fought daily. As I got older, I grew out of that rebellious phase and have learned to love and appreciate them. ‘Salt’ describes that transition and much more.”

She also works as editor-in-chief for “Cold Creek Review” literary journal and always accepts submissions.

While establishing her career, Tran hit a major roadblock in finding a publisher for “Moon River.” “I sent out over 100 queries to literary agents, agencies and publishers. I only heard back from about four — three of those were declines.”

Luckily, she seldom experiences writer’s block or faces a lack of ideas.

Tran encourages aspiring authors never to give up. “It’s not easy being a writer. We face rejection on a daily basis. Never doubt the quality of your work and just keep going,” she said.

In addition, she recommends becoming active in the writing community. “Join social media, attend book festivals and get the word out to media outlets,” Tran said.

In 2013, Tran returned to Alabama after receiving a bachelor’s degree in English literature from West Virginia University.

For more information, email info@amberdtran.com or visit amberdtran.com, Facebook/amberdtran, Twitter and Instagram (@amberdtran).

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