Monday, January 8, 2007
Don't Wait to Put Your Toe in the Water!
Unpublished writer's toss and turn, worry and fret about finding someone to publish their work. Many struggle with thoughts of self-publishing out of frustration. Getting published is the desirable end of an uphill climb. Or is it?
Finding a publisher is really only the beginning. You have another peak to climb. You get the "golden" acceptance and after your heart stops pounding you sigh, "Now all I have to do is write another good book." Not quite. If you haven't already studied up on promoting, you have a lot of work ahead of you. Promotion is your job too, even if your publisher is at the top of the publishing heap they will expect you to do your part. If you self-publish it is all on you.
What kind of promotion are you willing to do? Will you do school visits, booksignings, television or radio interviews? How far are you willing to travel from home? What kind of program will you present? Stop hyperventilating. I have a few tips on getting started.
Before your book is actually published start writing press releases, bios, blurbs, etc. You don't want to leave everything to the last minute. Thanks to computers you will be able to fill in the details later or make corrections if necessary.
If you don't already have a website one is in order. If you are a total computer illiterate, like me, you can start out with a blog. They are easy to use and free. Look at other writer websites to see what kind of information you might want to include on your site. Even if you have to redo something, try to make it look as professional as possible. Don't leave your mistakes for others to see.
Start making lists of places to send your press releases. List reviewers who might be willing to review your book. Make a list of local newspapers, radio and television stations that may be interested in interviewing you, or just be willing to publish information about your new success. Make a note of the person to contact at each one. You don't want to contact anyone yet, you just want to be prepared.
Now start a list of schools that might be interested in an author visit. Also a list of book stores within a reasonable distance from home. Don't forget supplies! Pens for autographing books. Flyers to hand out. Promotional items. Props for your presentation.
Work at being outgoing. Talk to people about what you do, but don't forget to show an interest in them too. Do they have children, grandchildren, siblings? These people may be future sales contacts. Be positive and upbeat. Smile!
Don't panic! Just like writing you start with "baby steps", but it will be easier if you don't wait until the last minute to put your toe in the water.
(c) 2007 Sharon A. Soffe