I’m creating the backmatter for Maisie in Hollywood. Above is the final page in my book, a promo for Sly! The Rogue Decamps.
I’ll have to have Decamps able to be found on Amazon when book one of Maisie is printed and ready to sell. Like Perry, I plan to sell at book and art fairs and to try to get it into local bookstores.
I’m researching promotional strategies on the web. Most of what I see might work for previously published authors with a following – and an email list:
- Post a cover reveal – Run giveaways of ARCs – Send ARCs to major publications (For sure, in my dreams!)
- Create bonus content. (For your hordes of dedicated followers, natch.)
- Announce a title reveal. Have your book available for preorder in time for its cover reveal.
- Build an author street team of volunteers to incite word-of-mouth buzz. (Again, in my dreams)
- Create an inventory of book promotion images to promote the preorder and book launch. (This I can handle.)
- Post fun photos of the book on social media. Publish posts on sites like BuzzFeed & Medium.
- Your mailing list! Mailing list! Mailing list!
Carl has his path: Get your name known by submitting to anthologies. It seems to be working for him, and good luck to him. GD and Victor have also had success with anthologies and small publishers.
I’m searching for anthologies of humor. I see nothing that fits my stuff. One looked promising until I got to: maximum 700 words.
700 words are not enough to develop any appreciable characterization. I should try it, I guess, to see what I can do with 700 words. Maybe I’m wrong. But I don’t think so. I don’t want to write graphic-novel-style without the graphics.
Cover reveals on social media, do they work? I skim right past them. Does anybody pay attention to them?
Does anyone here have a substantial mailing list? How did you acquire it?
I’m counting on my eye-catching covers to drive sales. At an art fair, this may work.
I’d like to get a peek at that catalogue that book stores order from. I’m guessing a snappy title is your best bet there. Do you get to include a subtitle? How about a short description? *Sigh* Maybe the crucial piece of information is your name. Are you a known quantity?
Ah! It’s called ‘Books in Print’. I think I can get a look at it.
Speaking of titles, I’m googling titles of articles I’ve posted here and on Medium. A number of them turn up in a google search. The ones that don’t, maybe the wording is not individual enough, there are too many pieces called ‘And Away We Go’, etc.
I’ve just changed the title of this piece from blah to something more interesting.
I’ve known a lot of screwball characters in my time. I could work this or that name into a headline and have the individual folded into my story in a reasonable manner so it’s not an outright bait and switch. I might snag folks who’ve wondered, for instance, whatever became of that bad boy Richard Rheem?
Richard, a former lover of Andy Warhol, was my housemate for two years in Boston. Could I claim he inspired one of my slippery characters? He was sure he deserved more out of life than life was handing him. Yeah, he’d fit right in with my lovely bunch of malcontents.
I google him from time to time. I see a gelatin print of Richard, by Warhol, is selling on artsy.net. Asking price: $18,000! And photos from his days with Andy. I can’t find anything current. Is he still around? When I knew him he already had a couple suicide attempts under his belt.
Hey it’s just a thought.
My larger point is: we have to think outside the box, worm our way into widespread notice by any route available to us.
I’ll wrap this up: What else can I do to improve my chances of being discovered? I know, I know. Finish the damn thing.
This massive project overwhelms me. This is the way it goes with me. I start small, and my thing grows and grows. Sly, an eight-book series, started as a short story in 1985. I had drawn an image of a cat playing a fiddle for an illustration class. I decided it needed a story to go with it. Sly (his name at the time: Puss) was born.
That piece is long lost. I altered a well-known verse and explained the solid history behind it. (Many a childish rhyme was based on a real event.) I recall the verse. The story? Not so much.
Hey diddle, diddle, the cat and the fiddle.
The cow jumped over Muldoon.
(A cow and a pig joined Puss’s attempt to obstruct an assassination plot. Muldoon was one of my villains.)
The little dog laughed to see such sport.
(Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex, was known as Elizabeth’s ‘lap dog’)
Cavendish ran away with the spoon.
A spoon was coated with a clear glaze of poison that would dissolve when dipped in a scalding-hot mug of a treat only recently imported from the Americas–chocolate. This was the method by which Cavendish intended to commit regicide. A Catholic cleric, dressed as a member of his household, wearing his livery, was to serve the beverage and take the fall.
Book four, A Dainty Dish, was eighty-percent written. It will be substantially reworked. Why? Because I discovered John Dee, Elizabeth’s royal astrologer. My conception of the assassination plot has changed radically.
It’s just as well. The cow jumped over Muldoon . . . maybe that gem is best forgotten.