Saturday, January 8, 2011

"look at me!!!"

marketing... ug.  feels a lot like selling. and in this case i'm selling myself.  i'm not good at it, i never have been.  i tried selling security systems in new mexico one summer... i lasted five weeks and have forever since based the level of my happiness in terms of "well at least i'm not in new mexico selling security systems." 
it's not that i think that security systems are bad and i DEFINITELY don't think my book is bad! but to go around disturbing people's lives asking them if they could just take a minute to "look at me!!! PLEASE!!!"
it gives me heart burn.
when Tate Publishing accepted my  manuscript i hit the roof i was so excited.  i knew that part of the contract agreement was that they'd provide me with a marketing representative and market my book.  but what i didn't realize is that every author (new or weathered) needs to market themselves as well.  how else will your family and friends know that you have a book out there to buy?  how else will local coffee houses and book stores know that you're out there and wanting to do book events?  it has to come from YOU! (or in this case... me... ug.) 
so i have to convince all these people that i have created something that they actually want to spend money on.  and then i have to plan these book events (in my case i'm still doing book signings... which are just fancy way of saying i'm going to be sitting at this table for two hours - please come buy my book.)  and i have to look professional and confident and i need to strike up conversations with people and ask them to give me their money and... oh dear, that is so not me.  i'm not a sales person.  i'm not a marketing person.  i'm a writer!  my comfort zone is sitting on my couch with my lap top computer silently creating stories that have been looming in the back of my brain. 
so this marketing thing?  a huge step for me.  i'm largely out of my comfort zone. 
and i could use all the advice i can get!


  1. you silly girl...get out there and flaunt your genious

  2. Oh, Natalie. You have it the nail on the head. I came to this realization myself a bit ago, and I'm not even published. But I took what I thought was a class on writing and marketing your work (see at UVU the end of September. The presenter had some great ideas for ways to help market your book and even ways to go about it, including which bookstores are more accommodating to the authors. You might want to check out her book ( Her focus is really on self publishing, but the marketing suggestions are relevant either way.

    Brandon Sanderson (not sure you know who he is--he's a Provo author and BYU Creative writing instructor who is finishing up the Wheel of Time series and an incredible fantasy author) said on his blog that one of the hardest things an authors struggles against is obscurity. Every trip to a bookstore reinforces his statement. How do you get your book noticed when it's mixed in with all those other books?

    Seriously, it blows my mind. I've got friends and family members who first heard about Sanderson when he visited their high school classes. Is there something in your book that you could base an informational (and entertaining) presentation on--that you can keep referring back to your book about? Personally I'd be a little less intimidated about that than sitting in a dang bookstore! Or offer to teach a class at the local library? There's an author (Greg Park) who teaches at the local high school who's come to our library to do just that. There were many young people there (quite a few his students), but word gets around.

    Good luck!

    Still haven't received your book in the mail. Hopefully Monday ...