Writing Up A Storm – March 2010

Posted on Mar 16 2010
  Writing Up A Storm   March 2010

February was a busy month, and March is already shaping up to be even busier. But that’s a good thing, right? It means I have work!Carolyn Howard-Johnson has graciously agreed to step in and provide this month’s Question of the Month article. Carolyn will be shedding light on marketing myths that can ruin our books and our careers.

    In This Issue

QUESTION OF THE MONTH: WHAT MARKETING MYTHS CAN KILL MY BOOK AND MY CAREER?(Answer provided by guest columnist Carolyn Howard-Johnson.

FYI – Important news for book reviewers




(Don’t forget to send yours in!)


10 Marketing Myths That Can Kill Your Book and Career

(And Their Remedies!)

By Carolyn Howard-Johnson

Here are excuses many authors use not to promote, killers all. Each includes advice that will help a writer salvage his book and career from wrong thinking.

* “My book is doing well enough. My career is on an upturn. I can easily take a year off from promoting to write.”

Advice: Cut back if you must but slot in some time to keep the efforts you’ve already made at least at a simmer.

* “I hear everyone is cutting back on promotion so why shouldn’t I?”

Advice: Didn’t your mother ever ask you, “If Johnny jumped off a cliff, would you do it, too?” Look at those authors. If they’re selling lots of books, it’s because somebody (their publisher, bookstores, their publicists) is promoting them. I’ll bet, though, that most of the authors saying this aren’t selling very many. Look at your situation. If you don’t do it, who will do it for you?

* “I like Carolyn’s Frugal Book Promoter idea so I’m going to only do things that cost no money at all.”

Advice: Hey! Frugal is one thing. Cheap is another. Some of the best things you can do cost some money. An example is American Booksellers Association Advance Access program. Find it at www.bookweb.org. Careful though. Always weigh the “rightness” of any program for your particular book. 

* “I’m gong to examine everything I’m doing and only continue what I can prove is working.”

Advice: You may not be able to prove much, if anything. That’s not the way marketing works. Judge how well your entire campaign is going only after you have given it plenty of time to work. If one thing is working well, maybe it is because your title or name is being seen elsewhere. Balance your campaign, yes. Try new things, yes. Cut back on a few only if you must. Keep in mind that book sales are not necessarily the most valid way to evaluate your promotion.

* “Nothing I’ve tried works. I’m giving up.”

Advice. You may be on the brink. Or maybe you’ve been giving up on each aspect of your campaign too early. Any marketing plan must be many-pronged, frequent and long-term.

* “If I cut back on promotion and find my sales slipping, I can always gear up again.”

Advice: Yikes! Good publicity and promotion build. It’s like skipping rocks on a pond. With each stone, ripples wave out, out, out. Eventually, after you’ve skipped lots and lots of stones, the results start coming back to you in waves. If you stop whipping those stones into the water, the results dissipate. It will take a long time to get enough stones dancing across the water again to match what you’ve done and, once you lose momentum, you may never get it back.


Carolyn Howard-Johnson is the author of The Frugal Book Promoter: How to Do What Your Publisher Won’t, The Frugal Editor: Put Your Best Book Forward to Avoid Humiliation and Ensure Success and an Amazon Short, “The Great First Impression Book Proposal: Everything You Need To Know To Sell Your Book in 20 Minutes or Less.” Learn more at www.howtodoitfrugally.com.


FYI – Important news for book reviewers

Reviewers may obtain electronic ARCs of Poisoned Pen Press
novels by going here http://netgalley.com/ and signing up. Once approved, they can then access the chosen PPP title(s), PPP ask for a copy of the review and it would not be a bad idea to email a copy to the author involved either.

Thanks to reader Mary Reed for this information!

LINK OF THE MONTH: Book-Clubs-Resource.com

Maybe this site can help you get your books read by book clubs.


MARKET SPOTLIGHT: Always Keepers Press

Always Keepers Press is a new audio book publisher currently seeking submissions in the genres of sweet romances, inspirational romance, speculative Christian fiction, Christian conservative non-fiction and cozy mysteries. Visit AKP online for additional information.


S H A M E L E S S Self-Promotion

Gayle Trent: My previously out-of-print book Between A Clutch and A Hard Place is currently available in audio form by Always Keepers Press. My Daphne Martin mystery series has been sold to Simon & Schuster’s new imprint Gallery by my agent, Robert Gotlieb.


About Gayle Trent 
Gayle Trent is a full-time author and freelance writer. Her current cozy mystery series include the Daphne Martin Mystery Series for Bell Bridge Books and the Embroidery Mystery Series for NAL/Penguin. The latest Daphne Martin mystery is titled Dead Pan. The first embroidery mystery, The Quick and The Thread, will be released in August of 2010.


  Gayle’s webpage Gayle’s Twitter Account

Gayle – Fresh Fiction 
Gayle’s Blog





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