Monday, October 4, 2010

Waiting for My Book's Publication Date, Guest Post by Aggie Villanueva

So you've finished your book. You've baited your hook, cast into the waters of agents and editors, and you've landed a publisher. Now you're waiting for your publication date. What's the next big question?

According to Aggie Villanueva, it's: When do I start promoting it?

And her answer is: Get busy promoting it now.

And one of the first and simplest ways is contacting all the interviewers and reviewers you know of with a submission letter. Most of them work three to six months ahead, or more, so contact them now.

Land Interviews and Reviews

Over the years I’ve compiled a list of over 200 interviewers and reviewers who specialize in just about every genre, to be used for just this occasion.Never let a contact you make go unrecorded in your little black book.

I’m awaiting my own publication date for my new how-to-write book that actually has nothing to do with writing, The Rewritten Word: How to Sculpt Literary Art no Matter the Genre. I’ve already landed twenty people.

I count it as “people” rather than interviews and reviews because half of them do both for you, and many reviewers post it to several sites, giving you so much more publicity from their one review. One of my reviewers posts hers to forty-four different sites.

Some of these wonderful-world-of-author-promotion people go even further. Some asked for feature articles, guest posts, and interviews about other aspects of your writing, inclusion in their newsletters, etc.

Because of my prepublication efforts just with interviewers and reviewers, in three days I have a minimum of 124 separate places on our World Wide Web that will be talking about my book for the next six months--so far. Not everyone has responded.

Social Media Contests & Announcements

And of course you and I will make announcements to our social media following and our precious email subscribers, offering give-aways, contests, Facebook Event Parties, contests at your Facebook Page, retweeting contests etc. We’ll have so many different things going on that our daily posts will overflow with freebie offerings galore.

I consider all these basic and first and on-going steps. Once I’ve fielded all the responses for interviews and reviews and hosted several social media give-away contests, it’s time to start thinking about my next “event.”

Conduct On-line Events

Events are a lot of work but so much fun for everyone involved. Because these are the events I throw for myself, they are also the events I offer as an author publicist at Promotion a la Carte (you can find the full details about each at my company site).

I’ve already begun planning for a huge three-day Book Party in January of 2011. (Read about how I conduct one). This is one of my clients’ favorite events, and mine too. It’s a lot of work but you get to work with the great sponsors you acquire and lots of readers who will buy the book to be eligible to participate. Study how I do it at Promotion a la Carte and see what you can come up with specifically for your own book.

Readers love this kind of event because there is a windfall of wonderful prizes and lots of interaction, like the Author Confessions, Treasure Hunt, and Retweet Contest which affords three winners a spectacular grand prize.

During events like this three-day Book Party, or the equivalent that you dream up on your own, you and your sponsors get great amounts of publicity and site traffic, readers get the best value imaginable just for buying a book and subscribing, and you often make life-long friends. It’s a win-win-win.

Virtual Book Tour

Just when the work and fun of these events begin to die down it’s time for a virtual book tour. This aspect takes a whole lot of work too. You thought you were done writing for a few months?

Don’t even think about it.

Now you start writing dozens of guest posts, articles, interview questions, and more. Write everything you can think of for blog tour hosts to pick from when they agree to be a stop on your tour. You need dozens of them if you want dozens of tour stops.

Your tour should last at least two months with about three stops per week. Hopefully your response will take you another few months more. Plan to give away a book at each stop, and then a super cool grand prize for someone who has followed the entire tour (made a comment at each stop and at your own blog site).

See our Virtual Book Tour product page for a link to purchase a great practical ebook on conducting your own book tour by Cherie Burback, Virtual Blog Tours.

Spend a Full Year on Huge Promotional Pushes

There is nothing new or innovating here. There are expected and tried and true promotional methods every author who wants to succeed takes. And you should dedicate a full year to huge publicity pushes, one after the other.

As your creative juices get flowing you will come up with ideas and prizes and sponsor prizes specific to your own book’s theme. And the fun will snowball.

Surrounding yourself with promotional efforts was never so easy. And your book might even make many of the various best seller list because of your efforts.

Good luck. Let me know how your promo campaigns are going.

Bio: Aggie Villanueva is a critically acclaimed photographic artist, bestselling novelist and non- fiction writer, a marketing expert whose marketing blog, Visual Arts Junction, was voted #5 at Predators & Editors in the category “Writers’ Resources, Information & News Source” for 2009, less than a year after founding it. She is the owner of Promotion a la Carte author promotions, and regular contributor at the prestigieous marketing blogs BookBuzzr, and Orange Soda, an SEO marketing company.
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  1. I just got release dates for 5 different stories, one of which is a novel, and the others are short story e-books! I really need to get started on this now!

    Marc Vun kannon

  2. Good post! Thanks for sharing, Aggie. As I learned when I dove headfirst in marketing before Behold the Dawn's release last year, promotion is a full-time job. But success in this brave new world of publishing can't come without it.

  3. Thankx so much K.M. You're so right. And as are you, Author Guy. Good luck in getting started on that!

  4. Aggie, great post! Thanks for sharing your expertise with us!

  5. You're more than welcome, Linda. Anytime. I had a great time here with you all.

  6. Wonderful article Aggie. Too many excellent authors give up before they allow the time to gain an audience.