Mainly, there is a pervasive belief that promotion is entirely up to the publisher, and the actions of the author can make no difference one way or the other in the success of a novel. Okay, I think that used to be true to some extent. But these days a few things have changed.
First of all, all publishers are doing less and less for their authors. And for the rest of the books? You get in their catalog. Advanced Reader Copies get sent out for reviews. Um, and? Well, good luck to you!
I equate it to throwing spaghetti onto the wall and seeing which bits stick. If a book gets a starred review and happens to win a major award, then cool. Otherwise, push it aside for the next batch a mere 3 months later. Publishers are now banking on just hcicks. Why waste their precious resources on things like booking ings and sending out press, when the author could do that herself?
Clever, right? At the outset, you should have a frank talk with your publicist at your publishing house about what you would like to handle, and how to do it without stepping on toes, or repeating what they do. But what if you actually need the money for like, say, living? And I have two things that a publicist does not: 1. Absolute passion for my book. Remember, no one not even your mother will love your book the way that you do, and be driven to promote it the way you will; and 2.
I have unlimited access to the author! I can quote her in releases and features, book her at appearances, and connect her with readers in a positive way. You needed contacts. You needed a huge budget to print up ad materials, posters, bookmarks. You needed to go out on tour. You needed to cozy up to book reviewers. Today, contacts in the media chicks chat readily found online.
Easy to find. Easy to send a personal note to, or a feature story to about an upcoming ing with images of yourself chicks chat your book cover attached, of course. Forget the cold call. Personally go to every bookstore within driving range, and cuat yourself, drop off info on your book which you have printed up beautifully on your computerand chat with the manager, vhat if chhat would like to do a ing with you. This will cost you in terms of travel expenses, of course.
Remember that independent bookstores will cnat your most ardent supporters, so be sure to build your relationships with them and shop at indies, and include a link to indiebound. I tell booksellers that I will send out press to area media about the event, and wow, are they happy to hear that. A few weeks before any ing, I create a nice feature story about the event and my novel, and send it out with pix. The library has books that will show you how.
With color printers, you can make your own publicity info. This is all nickle and dime stuff, folks.
My approach is to be the anti-spammer, meaning that Chlcks make an effort to contact people personally. And I use their name in my note. Author J. Konrath is a gifted promoter with a personal touch. His ideas are wise and witty and absolutely on chicks chat. Since my book features a biracial character who is half Indian, I contacted the international publication of India Abroad, and they ran a huge cover story about it.
I also contacted lots of great people who write about the mixed race experience, and they were really responsive. I was featured at AsiansofMixedRace. I also contacted librarians via who were in areas with high concentrations of Indian populations.
You are building a future in the book-reading world. So, what angles are in your book? What organizations out there would be interested? Can you write for their newsletter or blog, relating your personal experiences that tie into your book? Can you create a great presentation for their chapter meetings? Give an inspiring speech at their conventions? Give an honest piece of yourself to your readership, and they will respond to you.
First of all, your website. You have to have one. Then if you purchase your domain from a site like bluehost. You have to get onto facebook. The best feature on this is the event invite. Create invites for all of your ings and appearances, and invite folks. This has worked out amazingly, especially when I tell bookstores with facebook s to do this.
My last event was able to send out over invites! A few days before the actual event, you can go to the invite and message all invited with a cheerful reminder note. Build up your follow list with librarians, booksellers, publishers, editors, reviewers, readers. Then post on twitter links to your facebook events, or any online press you get.
Keep it short. If you leave at least 40 characters remaining, folks can easily retweet it to their buds. And you can shorten your links by going here. Balance is key, and you are part of a wide-spread community, so share the love. Reader-oriented sites offer a great way to connect with your audience. Create an author. Friend folks who have read chicks chat book. Here are the sites I spend time on: librarything.
Librarything and goodre also let you post your events. Also, indiebound. Create an authorand type in all of your appearances. They will automatically send out your appearances to a huge of online sites. You can now add a picture, a bio, and link your blog posts here. PLUS booktour.
But some groups, like one for bookstores or libraries or publishing, and then you can use that connection when you invite someone to connect to you. Create a beautiful profile, and link your blog to it so that the content is always interesting and changing. They cbicks you a really simple way to do this.
Now, back to the human side of things… Involve your friends and family everywhere to help you in your promotion. I think J. Konrath wisely pointed this out on his site, and it really stuck with me. So do encourage folks to write reviews for barnesandnoble. Enlist this army of supporters to request your book be purchased at their libraries most cyicks sites allow this on their online chicks chat, and require a library card. Have cat visit their local bookstores and put your book face out, instead of just spine out.
Hem, hem. One more thing. There is definitely power in s. If you can create a group of writers who will blog together, or do panels and talks together, you can turn any event into something noticeable and special. We support each other, and we are able to support independent bookstores through our special truth tour chickz.
Chicks chat there other debut novelists that you can link up with? Other authors you know in your genre who could do a panel with you at the next huge convention? Power in s, baby! So you can see there is a lot that you can do, most of it while sitting at home in your jammies in front of your laptop. After I gave this talk about marketing not in my jammiesthe members of the Bucks County Romance Writers group all wanted to know when I actually found time to write.
I encouraged them to get to work.