Yesterday I met with Craig Nelson; publisher/owner of Loveland Press. We started talking about one of the most time consuming and challenging pieces of publishing--marketing. Our conversation paralleled the presentation I gave on Monday afternoon on Marketing Yourself and Your Writing. Craig said so many authors seem to feel once they get their book in their hand, the work is over. The truth is, it is just beginning.
Marketing is the key to any successful book. Books don't magically appear on the bookshelves at Barnes & Noble or online. This takes some work. Then once it is there, people need to know about it--once again this takes time and effort. Regardless of the size of publishing house you are working with, you can't expect them to do all the work. The more you help, the better book sales will be and in turn, will increase your chances of getting another book deal with the same publisher. Whether we like it or not, publishers, editors and agents are in the business to sell books, not to fulfill our lifelong dream of being a writer.
When you are sending out your queries, proposals...include something about how you will help with the marketing of the book. This is a must for non-fiction book, but for fiction writers, it will help you stand out when your book finally makes it to the editorial team.
- What are you willing to do?
- help arrange promotional events in your area
- write magazine articles related to your topic (this applies to fiction as well)
- while the article may not be about your book, you can include your book title and website in the bio
- speak at conferences, events or schools
- teach workshops
- radio interviews
- write an e-newsletter
- Begin to form relationships (even before your book is out) with
- bookstore owners
- potential readers
- through speaking events
- local media