Marketing Your Novel

marketing your book

For the past three weeks, I’ve been working to the point of exhaustion on marketing my debut novel, Passage of Promise.

Writers, especially introverted ones like me, who have not yet published their works, look upon the upcoming marketing and promoting of their books with some dread. It looms out there, always prodding in the back of your brain, telling you, “You’ll have to work your butt off after you hit the “Distribute” button on your publication date”.

You thought the first draft was a whole lot of sweat and mentally draining. The hundreds of revisions and several edits were drudgery. The last minute tweaks and perfecting before publishing were nerve-wracking.

Well, of course, it is true all of that is hard work, but then you’ve reached the point of promoting and marketing your book. You’ve never marketed yourself so hard since the instances where you’ve interviewed for a job.

It feels awkward at first. Your confidence isn’t quite up to the task. But as people purchase your book, you begin to truly believe your story is worth even more than you originally thought.

Then, as your confidence grows, your promoting, reaching out via social media, local bookstores, online bookstores, libraries, etc. becomes easier.

And it boosts your confidence more so when your book is accepted by a local bookstore and the library includes you in one of their Author Showcases for the year.

No doubt, I’ve had to ramp up massage appointments and drink extra calming tea through this period. But it’s all part of being an author. It comes with the job.

These are the actions I’ve taken to promote my book:

Posting on social media about my book and where my book can be purchased

Contacted local bookstore to carry my book and do a future author event

Contacted local library to participate in their 2020 Authors Showcase event

Contacted online bookstores, as well as a large bookstore in Denver

Contacted my former and current churches

Contacted a good friend who does radio interviews

Made fliers for my book to set in local and church bookstores

Will post a picture when my book is on the shelf of the local bookstore

With all of this in place, I’m taking a little breather for the next several days.

I hope these ideas are helpful to new and first-time published authors.

Happy writing!

 

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Pick up your copy of Passage of Promise  via Amazon or Barnes & Noble!

Me with PofP final print copy April 27 2020

 

The Traveling Child

teddy bear in suitcase

If you grew up the child of a military member, you’ll understand how life was for me.

My life revolved around moves on base and off, from as early as two years old to seventeen.

Since my birth in the state of Maine, my family moved from there to Taiwan, Massachusetts, Virginia, Alabama, Germany, Illinois, Virginia, and Colorado.

While in Germany, my mom took my sister and I with her to Greece each summer so that we could spent it with our yiayia (grandmother), aunt (thía), and our two cousins. We spent three summers in Greece, and the memories are fantastic.

Most of the time, we spent our days at the beach, playing mini golf, eating ice cream and watermelon, and tramping around the suburbs of Athens.

One time, my mom took my sister and I to a disco. It was fun dancing to the BeeGees on colored tiled floors produced by strobe lights and a disco ball dangling from the noisy room’s ceiling.

And the outdoor theaters were awesome–four walls without a roof, surrounded by beautiful flowers with the huge screen on the wall across from us.

My dad retired in Colorado, and I finished up my last year of high school in Castle Rock, Colorado.

Although attending my senior year at a completely unfamiliar and friendless high school was both challenging and incredibly abysmal, the fact that I fell in love with the light, arid, sunny climate and gorgeous mountainous scenery of Colorado helped lessen that year’s lows, and it only got better after I graduated, seeing how I hated high school.

When I was growing up, I was painfully shy, and it took me several months to get to know other kids. Nevertheless, I did each place we moved, and in some cases, I wrote to those I became friends with for many years, until most of them stopped writing.

Writing letters was a normal way of communicating in my day, youngsters out there reading this. 🙂 And writing letters and receiving them in the mail was akin to getting a surprise gift every time my mom would bring in the mail.

One friend, who became my best friend, I met while my family was stationed at Rhein Main Air Base, is still in contact with me today. We’ve literally kept in contact, visited with each other a few times, for the last approximately forty years.

Relationships like that are so special and cherished. In fact, I’ve talked to her recently, and she is planning to come visit me in a few weeks, depending on the COVID rules here in Colorado.

Childhood memories of getting in and out of airplanes, unpacking our things, starting at new schools, are embedded in my mind. Riding my bike with my friends, playing Barbies, going to the roller skating rink to glide around the circular floor and do the hokey-pokey with the lights off and colorful spotlights dancing around the huge space bring a smile to my face.

So many children were in the neighborhoods in which I grew up. You’d encounter them on your street or in their front yards, and soon, you were talking, playing–friends.

There was such freedom in the days of my childhood. You hear that often from older folks like me. But it is so true. Life was full of imagination, wonder, and riding your bike or skating around your neighborhood and beyond with no fear and little limits/boundaries, especially if you lived on base.

I wish it were still like that today. My sons didn’t grow up with the same freedoms I did.

All those moves exposed me to different cultures and different people, and I feel blessed to have had those experiences.

I bring all this up because not only am I reminiscing, but also because ideas of writing about the military brat’s life, using some of my own experiences to create a work of fiction has been swirling around in my head the past few days.

Perhaps this new idea will land on my mind’s runway, and a story will be written. I’m hoping so.

Were you a military brat? What childhood memories do you hold dear?

 

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Pick up your copy of Passage of Promise  via Amazon or Barnes & Noble!

Me with PofP final print copy April 27 2020