Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Pimping Your Book
No I don't mean force your book into a shorty shorts, fishnets and a tube top and drop it off on a downtown corner.
Although that might make more cash than a badly launched self-published book.
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, bunnies, but writing your book and editing it---are the easy parts.
Yeah, I cried a bit too. Go ahead let it all out. But don't short circuit the keyboard with the tears.
First, don't spend a year or years writing a book and then put a 59cent cover on it. I know, I know, looks shouldn't matter but when was the last time you dated that one eyed humpbacked guy who smells like sweat socks?
A little packaging won't kill you and it just might help make your book more attractive to readers. You know--put sunglasses on it and give it a bath. :)
Just self-publishing a book without any background work is a bit like sending a aging nun out to get a job at a strip club. Honey, it just isn't going to work. You're going to need a website that's searchable on this thing called the internet. :)
You'll need to proposition every website, blog, vlog and book review site who might give you a shout out. And don't forget related sites. Example: You are writing a murder mystery set at Nascar? Try pimping your book at Nascar related sites.
Set up (if possible) readings at your local library or book signings at any local INDEPENDENT bookstores. Some Indy's won't carry self-published books, some will. Don't assume.
Come from a small town? See if someone will do a special interest piece in the local paper.
Hit up your bigger local book groups. Having people who are book people read your book, discuss it their group and then talk it up to their book friends, on their websites, their blogs can't hurt. People trust people more who they read often or who read a lot of books.
Every writer says their book is wonderful but sometimes they're wrong. You are always fighting the impression that a self-published book is one step above the free flyer given away at the grocery. To fight that impression, try to get some book reviews from people who don't owe you any favors and didn't give birth to you.
And hon, before you pimp out that book, EDIT it. You'll need a second set of eyes. Not just for typos but plot holes and inconsistencies. You won't see some holes because you're too close to the project. Get an editor or a nit picky English major (at the minimum) to look at it.
Self-Publishing is WORK. Writing is, I hate to tell you, was the easy part.
That sucks, doesn't it?
Crap, I suppose this means I have to finish my novel. Oh well, do as I say bunnies, not as I do. Most of what I publish I do for me. I'm assuming you want paid. :)