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Jack Foster
February 24th, 2003, 05:15 PM
How could I promote my book better? my slaes are not doing so well!

February 24th, 2003, 05:44 PM
Read above.

I, Brian
February 25th, 2003, 08:04 AM
What are you doing to promote it at the moment?

Uh, aside from immediately posting the link the moment you join a forum? :D Not the most immediate way to attract personal attention.

Tell me what you're doing at the moment and I'll try and give you some potentially useful tips.

February 25th, 2003, 08:28 AM
Shouldn't the publisher be handling this?

...he asks, showing his ignorance about the whole industry...

I, Brian
February 25th, 2003, 08:41 AM
It's one of Erebus's "Equilibrium Books" authors. Which isn't exactly a titan of publishing, even in little ol' Australia. ;)

Still, I'm sure there's room for author self-promotion, though.

February 25th, 2003, 11:41 AM
Here are a few suggestions for the beginning author who's trying to promote himself or herself on a budget:

1) Figure out what your target market is. Is the book oriented towards young adults? horror fans? the SF market? Then figure out where these people are. Conventions? Internet sites?

2) Get some business cards printed and start a website that promotes the book. Both can be done very professionally with minimal cost if you're willing to invest the time. You never know who you'll run into.

3) Contact local independent bookstores and ask if they'd be willing to let you hold a signing. There are a lot of people willing to support local talent - especially if they can meet you face to face. Larger chains may work too, but I would think that the local independents would be more open to this kind of thing - especially if they get a cut on the sales.

4) Hold a public reading. Set something up at your local library or a community college or university campus. Put up posters advertising the event and bring a few copies to it. You could try to organize this along with other aspiring (or established) local authors as it's a pretty safe bet that you're not the only one who wants to get his book out there.

5) Consider giving away a few copies. People aren't going to know how good your stuff is unless they read it.

6) Maintain realistic goals (but don't let go of your dreams). Most first time Canadian authors can expect a total of about $400 income (before tax) from their first book.

February 25th, 2003, 11:49 AM
First off, you need to go to bookstores to see if any will agree to carry a few copies of your book. Then, offer to do a free booksigning one day. Anyone who buys the book gets an autograph.

Add a link in your signature on forums such as this. Talk about it constantly. Call your local newspaper/TV station about doing a human interest piece on you, you might be surprised. Send press releases to every publication and news channe you can buy in your area. Donate a copy or two to your local library to generate interest.

Print some posters yourself and ask if local booksellers will allow you to post them somehere.

Post teasers on the net to get people interested in reading the rest of the book.

James Barclay
February 25th, 2003, 06:38 PM
In answer to one question, no it isn't the publisher's job to promote your work - not in isolation. An author must try and do all he or she can to help.

Try some of these:

Visit conventions, sign the copies in the dealer room. Go on panels, get your face known.

Write articles for genre websites, many of them are delighted to receive content.

Reply to any fan email you get - word of mouth is important.

Build a website - a publisher will probably not do it for you and, anyway, you want to be in control. After all, you might change publishers one day...

If your work is in any bookshops, offer to sign the stock (sitting alone at a table stacked with your unsold books is depressing).

In my experience, signings are always free. Indeed, all of the above that can be offered for free should be. You are promoting yourself. Don' expect anyone else to pay for it.

On the other hand, if you start being asked to go to events to speak and are promoted to bring the punters in, asking for payment is not unreasonable. And asking for expenses is a must. But all that is another story.

And be aware that despite your best efforts, you may never reach the sales you feel you deserve.

February 25th, 2003, 08:19 PM

Do you have any local radio stations that do book reviews? I occasionally write for this one in Australia: Bookwaves (http://www.users.bigpond.net.au/bluecatbooks/book%20waves/RUNNING%20SHEET.html) (I'm meant to be the sf reviewer... I think... we tend to overlap all the time. Last one I did was a children's fantasy.)

Do you know someone who has read your book and is capable of a review? Leone also likes to interview the authors, pretaped isn't a prob.

Also writing shorts for emags such as Antipodean SF, Scifidimension, etc, can drag a lot of people back to your website to see what else you've done.

Good luck. Marketing is the hardest part. That is why sales people get 20% and authors only get 7%!

I, Brian
February 26th, 2003, 03:05 AM
If you'd like advice on hosting companies I can suggest a few names, and also recommend a place to do some simple research on those names (to ensure reports of good service, etc).

Also, there's paid internet advertising - have you thought of purchasing banner ads on genre sites such as sffworld? In terms of cost per view (CPV) it should be quite cheap in relative terms, with a click-through rate of around 5% to be expected.

You could always hang around sites like this - take part, get to know people, and let others get to know you. That way you get far more personal attention in the event of being published. I know that any of the other established members here, in the event of becoming published, would like get an immediate sale from myself as a token of support and solidarity.

A lot of the other stuff I was thinking about has already been covered. ;)