Underwear Authors Association
Hopes for a Successful Book
Question from an individual in one of the internet groups to which I belong: “Now that my self-published book is published, do I need to promote it?”
Answer – “Only if you want to sell it!”
With hordes (not an exaggeration) of people deciding that anyone can write a “book” … that’s true … publish it … that’s true … and that the Brinks trucks will be lined up outside their doors delivering unlimited amounts of cash … that ends the fairy tale … disappointment looms. These folks are destined to join what I like to call the “Underwear Authors Association.”
For just a moment lets assume that our new “author to be” IS endowed with the necessary requisites to produce a creditable book. Not just some, all of them. Despite what the “let me take your money so you think you have a chance to be an author” industry would have you believe, people that have all these capabilities aren’t that common. They are:
- She/He has a message or story that is of interest to her/his target market.
- She/He has the imagination and cleverness to craft a story or present factual information in a way that will capture her/his target readers interest.
- She/He has command of sufficient writing skills to clearly communicate what has been devised.
- She/He has the patience and determination to finish what they start.
- She/He has mastered all the production arts required to get the book in print (From cover design and editing to formatting and selecting a printer) or has found someone to publish the book and do most of those things for them.
That’s not easy. But for many new authors, a shock awaits them. If you don’t promote the book, it won’t sell … Unless you have bona-fide name recognition from some other source other than writing.
The members of the Underwear Authors Association believe in the field of dreams, write it and they will come. “I can sit home in my B & P or skivvies and the world will hasten hither.” Does it ever happen? Yes, but one in a million are’t favorable odds.
My advice is that if you aren’t willing to work HARD promoting your book forget it until you are.
Be prepared to do the following plus a lot more not listed here.
- Establish an Internet presence. Web-page, blogs, facebook, twitter, linked-in, plus.
- Be unrelentingly active on your sites.
- Actively seek Internet outlets, groups, clubs, that will get your name recognized and continuously participate.
- Join groups like Goodreads, Library Thing, there are many others, and learn what the keys are to your participation in them and getting coverage.
- Actively court local news media (that’s persons) and find out who will engage with you. Newspapers, local mags, radio (talk shows are good), etc.
- Make press releases a way of life – Any time you get a valid excuse, make one.
- Develop presentations you can make to a wide variety of organizations. Civic clubs, book stores, libraries, schools, society’s, book clubs.
- Develop favorable relations with local book stores, find out what you have to do to get your books on their shelf, do signings, etc. Help them help you! Continually expand this “territory”.
- Attend local events, fair’s of all types, that present an opportunity to sell books.
- Introduce yourself to libraries on a county-by-county basis. Find out what you can do for them. Chances are they’ll reciprocate.
- There are seventeen more items on my list. However, if you start with the ten above, you’ll pull your promotion vehicle out on the highway.
You have to invest in yourself and your work BEFORE you can expect others to invest in what you write. If you have a small publisher, for example, approach each book as a joint venture. REMEMBER, IF THE PUBLISHER ISN’T SUCCESSFUL, YOU WON’T BE! Invest the time, effort and finances required to make your published book a success.
Is that work? It sure is! Does it take planning? It absolutely does! My next post will be on some planning you should do before you start writing your next book.
Appearance note: I’ll be speaking at King’s Gate Center in Port Charlotte tomorrow at eleven. Unfortunately this is only open to members. I will be on the East Coast next week at Daytona and other locations open to the public. I’ll post times and dates later.
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