So not only did you teach me about writing memoir, you also taught me about reading and thinking about how others write memoir. Thank you so much! Rebecca
Showing posts with label marketing books. Show all posts
Showing posts with label marketing books. Show all posts

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Find Your Audience - They Will Want Your Book

When we know who our books appeal to, it is easier to sell our books. Recently some family members held a book party for me in their home. They invited their friends who owned or liked animals. They knew their friends would be interested in  Paws, Claws, Hooves, Feathers and Fins; Family Pets and God's Other Creatures, which is all about animals and the people who love them. 

The party was fun with good food, wine and nice people. For the first 45 minutes, we all got to know each other. We chatted, talked about pets, about my sister Gay's sculpture and drawings and about my paintings hanging on her walls. I remembered names of the people who were close friends of my sister and brother-in-law. That helped with conversation.

When it was time for me to share some of the stories and poems in the book co-authored with my dear friend, Estelle Rice, Gay's husband, Stu gave me the most wonderful introduction. He is a very generous person and a kind person as well.

I stood and read for a half hour, more than I had planned, but the group seemed to be enjoying it so much. When I was done, Stu steered the audience over to the table where a couple of books were wrapped in Christmas bows. I encouraged the purchase of extra copies for Christmas presents and gifts for friends in the hospital. The short pieces are great for times when the reader might not want to get involved in a novel. 

Book signing at the Moring house

The men and women at the party overwhelmed me with compliments on my reading and with their interest in the book. My niece, Lee, sat beside me to help with making change. I was so glad to have her there.

It was the best experience I've had signing books since 2009 when Gay invited her friends to her house for lunch and a reading by me. My poetry chapbook, Now Might as Well be Then,  had been published and I read some poems from it. Although that group was not particularly into poetry, almost all of them bought a book. 

I find that writers have a bit of a mystique with those who do not write. We can answer questions they have always wanted to know or wondered about. 

On Friday of this week, Estelle and I will sign books at the Valley River Humane Society Thrift Store in Murphy, NC. We will be there from 11:30 AM until 3:30 PM. We will donate part of our sales to the animal shelter. We expect to meet animal lovers and others who just come to shop for a bargain. 

Do you have any hints for marketing a book? 

Tips from a publisher:

Thursday, July 20, 2017


A couple of weeks ago the Clay County Arts andHistorical Council held the annual Festival on the Square. In the center of our little town is a large beautiful brick courthouse built over 100 years ago.

On the grounds of the court house which is no longer used as a courthouse, vendors set up every year, on the weekend following July 4th, and thousands of people pour into town and onto the grounds. Fine crafts and handmade art of all kinds are sold in the small tents on the 10 x 10 spaces allowed. For many years there were no literary arts booths, but a few years ago the NC Writers’ Network West, our mountain program for writers, was allowed to be the only book sellers on the square for the festival.

This year Deanna Klingel, author from Sapphire NC, took the responsibility of putting up the canopy with forty pound weights on each pole so it would not blow away if we had a wind storm. Deanna is a writer of children’s books and she makes many kids happy when she calls them over to look at the books on the table in front of her. I think there is a bit of jealousy from other writers who don’t have her knack for selling books, but I admire a good marketer. After all, if you can’t sell your books in today’s market, you might not be in the writing business. 

Carolyn Frazier and Bob Grove in front with Deanna in pink strip and me with blue around my neck.
Deanna made table covers with skirts that looked professional and gave our booth some extra pizzazz that brought in passersby. She and her husband, Dave, brought tables and chairs for the booth and she brought copies of all her books. 

I sat in the booth to give out info on NCWN West and Writers Circle on Sunday afternoon. It was hotter than I can remember and I have to accept that I can’t do that anymore. I was no help in taking down the booth because simply taking my own things and my chair back to my car did me in. I was in terrible pain by the time I arrived home, and I suffered for three days afterward with my back.

This might have been our last booth at the festival on the square. We don’t have enough interest from members to make it worth the labor involved. None of us are young and energetic and the heat saps our energy. This would be a great experience for younger people, maybe a few men who don’t mind setting up and taking down the tent and loading everything in the cars. Outgoing writers who engage with the public could sell books and find new readers, but shy or introverted writers find this experience unpleasant.

My purpose for the booth at the festival is to make the public aware of our writing community in this region. We always find interested people who give us their contact information so I can put them on our email list. We send out newsletters and event announcements and those on the email list receive them. In time, many of them join us.

Perhaps because I lived with a salesman for 45 years and had a brother who was the best salesman ever, I have a good understanding of marketing. I understand that no one just comes to your door and asks for your books. If the public doesn’t know what you have that they want, how can they order your book online? Your family and friends will probably buy your book, but then the sales stop.

One of the authors in the booth was Bob Brooks fromBrevard. He said that any chance to connect with the public, even if a book is not sold at the time, helps the author down the road. Sometimes the success of marketing is not seen at the time, but comes later when a reader who has taken your card at the festival orders your book online.

Deanna says she always sees a rise in online sales a few days after her appearance at a public event.  Too bad most writers close their eyes to the need for successful marketing.

Some writers don’t want to market their books and don’t care if they sell a single copy. That is fine. But their publishers usually want them to sell books. After all, the publisher needs to make money in order to stay in business.
Marketing is the part of the writing business that most authors dislike, but if they plan to stay in the writing business, they should learn how to market their work.

Tara Lynne Groth will teach a class at Writers Circle on August 5, 1 - 4 p.m. on using a newsletter to reach your readers, your audience. This way writers can sit at home and promote their books. Readers don't buy books because they want to do something nice for an author they don't know. They buy books because the author has something to offer them. They buy books because they see the book or the author or hear from the author who wants to share something with them -- her book. 

Monday, March 23, 2015

Anne R. Allen on how to sell your books

If you haven't looked at the blog list on my sidebar, I suggest you read Anne R. Allen's post today.
Her advice on selling books is the best I've seen lately. She separates the fiction from the nonfiction tips and there is a reason to do so.
Anne says that slow-blogging for fiction writers, once a week, is fine, but she believes writers of nonfiction should post twice a week.
After you read her blog, come back and let me know what you think is the best way to sell books in today's world.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Writing is the easy part - now sell those books

 Follow These Five Rules to Prepare for Your Book Launch

1. Six months before the book is released, create a written marketing plan

2. Send out notices about your book acceptance to everyone on your email list, your Facebook and Twitter contacts as well. 
This is an announcement, not a pitch to sell the book. Not yet.

3. Call and set up book signings or readings, one a week for three months. The library or book store is not always the best place to hold a signing. I signed a book about horses in a farm supply and feed company. Advertise the events in local newspapers. Create interest in yourself. Include your photo if possible. 

4. Locate book clubs and make dates to visit them in person or by phone or skype. This can often be done from your own home.
If your book fits in a special niche, find those people through support groups, church groups, or social clubs, and make arrangements to give a free author chat, or give away several of your books each time you appear. One might be hesitate to give away his book, but consider this as cost of advertising. Word of mouth is the best kind of promotion, especially when it comes from one who has read and enjoyed the book

5. Guest blog for another blogger. Write short articles for your favorite charity, send to your local newspaper. If you have a cause you are passionate about, get your name out there by writing about this cause but don't write about something that will divide your audience.