Thursday, July 10, 2014

Marketing is My Weak Point

Thursday, July 10

I attempted to change my strategy thinking that perhaps I could be more consistent with the blog if I wrote in the afternoon. That didn’t work. Inspiration and words are with me in the mornings. I wanted to be able to write about the day’s accomplishments before I signed off the computer, but that will just have to be done the following morning… or when I get to it. I’ll get better, I promise.

By July 4, I’d approved the galley for my new book and it is now at the printer with the promise of having the first copy in my hand in two weeks. I am excited and nervous. Will people like it? Will they find it boring?

I’m sure all authors have these worries, but now it is time to work on the next phase – marketing. This is the hardest part for me. It means putting myself out there, promoting myself (a kind of bragging about myself which feels very uncomfortable.) This is something I have to do. Others may give good feedback and pass on the word, but I am the one responsible for getting the book sold… and to follow through on the plans.

Below is my first official attempt at marketing my new book:

New Book Coming Soon
Sasha Wolfe’s new book “Too Cold for Alligators” will be available for sale by the end of July.

“Too Cold for Alligators” was a year and a half in the writing. Wolfe said, “The hardest part was only being allowed to print 50 photos of the hundreds taken. I wanted readers to see everything!”

Follow her 33-day journey between New Hampshire and Florida as she explores southern culture and historical sites. Share the excitement of personal observations, times of self-reflection, thrill of spontaneous travel and seeing places and things for the first time. Track her progress with the daily maps and enjoy the photographs as she shares some of the wonderful sights seen along the way. Brief historical facts of the areas visited are also provided.

“To actually be in some of the places I’ve only read about was quite emotional and to hear the stories told from a southern point of view really changed my perception of history as I always believed it,” Wolfe concluded.

Details of where the book may be purchased in print and as an e-book will be made available soon.

Jane Pinel, who recently had her book “Dolly” published, is researching marketing and sharing tips with me. AuthorHouse with whom I am publishing my book, offered to do marketing for me for $4,800. Yikes, that’s not going to happen! So what are the alternatives?

The concept of write a good book and a publishing company will make you rich is a fairy tale. The publishing world has changed. What I am being told now is that you have to spend a lot of money before the big publishing companies will even consider your book. In other words, you pay them to publish your book and oftentimes, you may not retain the rights. Even if they do pick it up, it is still up to you to do most of your own marketing. They make it sound good, but the bottom line is YOU have to do 90% of the work.

Marketing takes up a lot of time. It’s basically “beating the pavement” whether you are physically out there going from bookstore to bookstore or working online. All the social media lines need to be covered. My friend, Nan McCarthy, was saying yesterday that 50% of her time is spent on marketing her work. Her paintings don’t sell themselves and as much as she’d rather spend time painting, she spends as much time trying to sell her work. This is especially true with book selling.

I have to ask myself how much time I am willing to put into marketing. If I’m not willing to do that part of the work, how many of my books will sell? The social media places like Twitter, Facebook, Linked-In, blogging, etc. is said to “only take a few minutes,” but if you do each of these things and more, that few minutes ends up being hours and those hours take away from doing more writing or art. Add in the other “normal” parts of life and the job that pays the bills, little time is left to do the actual art work or writing of new material.

I’m still finding my way. I want to get back to finishing the next already-in-progress book. But how can I justify writing another book when this last one isn’t out yet? It’s who I am, though. “If I didn’t write, I’d die or go crazy or worse…” I’ve been saying this for years.

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