Be Prepared to Catch the Bug

Most of the authors reading this blog have their book published in ebook format prior to it going into print. Most of the time they don’t even consider getting out there into the real world to promo.  Remember, it’s very important to get some face time with your readers and/or potential readers.  So it’s time to get up, get out and talk, talk, talk.

It’s important to get out there face to face and hand to hand to meet people.  It is the real life person that buys your book.  You aren’t the boogie man behind the computer that wrote the book, and they are not the nameless face behind the credit card.  I’m not sure about you, but I would be far more likely to buy a book from someone I have met in real life (Nancy Henderson) than from someone I have not.

Imagine this….You are a writer from Georgia, your book isn’t due out for several months, but there is a book fair or conference coming up in about 83 days.  What you should do is email a chairperson on one of the committees and more than likely you will be handed your fifteen minutes of fame.  Fifteen whole minutes to read a piece from your book.  Guess what?  Hundreds of people, who are now fans, have just heard your book and want more.  Do you have business cards?  Maybe some post cards with information about your old books on them?  Your web address?  Anything?  Come on, now’s the time!

Another step you can take is to stop by your local library, let them know that you are a local writer and you would be interested in donating a copy of your book to their local authors collection.  And while you’re there, ask them if they would mind if you did a book signing or reading in the near future?  Try doing the same with local book stores.  They enjoy having local authors stop in. This shows that people from your home town can make it as a writer.  Now let’s say that your book has a scene in it that is set in a hair salon, would your local salon be interested in holding a book signing for you?  Use the resources you have at hand.  You never know what possible networking contacts you may end up with while you are at one of these face to face events.  Until you are out there and are ready to catch the bug (possibly in the literal fashion, sniff sniff, can you pass me a tissue?) you may never know the extent to what you have passed by.

Local radio and TV stations love to do pieces on local artists.  You could contact stations and see if they have a community section that would be interested in spotlighting a local writer.  BUT BE PREPARED, most of these spots are taped EARLY in the morning.  Trust me I have tried.  And be prepared with every answer you could possibly think of to answer, because they will ask one that you are not prepared for.  If possible, ask them for a list of questions ahead of time to prepare yourself mentally for the interview.  The interview I did was over the phone and I was a wreck. I stuttered and stammered and couldn’t get the answer right to save my life, but it was a very early segment and I am sure only several thousand people heard me anyway.  Nothing like listening to a blubbering idiot on your commute to work.

Remember the most important piece of information that I can possibly give you.  The worse thing that someone can say to you is, “No.”  You will not be out anything if they do, but you will have gained more confidence by getting out there and exposing yourself to one more line of questioning.  You will have one more ‘no’ behind your back and are one more ‘no’ closer to a ‘yes’.  When you receive your nos they may actually be accompanied by a “but”….and a compromise.  So don’t give up, and keep plugging.  Your writing deserves to be put out there and given just as much work that you put into the writing!  Now Remember, Tomorrow Never Comes!  So come back next week and see what you can do about it.

PS…..have to leave you with a few that my friend Kissa told me about as she was reading this for me before posting.  When she is traveling, she leaves business cards with her tips.  She leaves them in book stores on the shelves.  (I think I personally would put them at the register, but that’s just me!)  When she sends promo items to her readers she sends extras and asks them to pass them along to their friends.  Thanks so much Kissa for sending those ideas along to share with my great readers!


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