First, I want to give Karen a HUGE thank you for hosting me as part of my blog tour! Karen has always been such a great supporter and friend for writers trying to get their names and their work out there, so I thought maybe it was a good time to reflect a little... as those friends I can count on have been an AMAZING resource for this book release thing.
Ironically, and through no grand design of my own, I've been blogging and maintaining my author profile on Facebook about three years in this month I ALSO had my first book release.
And MAN, am I a believer!!!! I know it seems like a long time, and I've seen superstars do it well faster than that. But I think networking is really sort of an organic process, falling into line with people we have things in common with. And more than once over the last three years, I've seen somebody jump in and almost immediately they fall to trying to specifically promote, withOUT having put in their time promoting others and making friends.
I ALSO meet a bunch of people each year on the ABNA boards—really nice people, fellow writers, but who've put out a book without a GLANCE at the how-to on promotion. I mean there IS a nice tight group who all promotes each other, but a lot of people stay fairly isolated and I feel sad. Their great books may never see the big success possible.
So if I were throwing out advice to someone NEW at this? This is what I would suggest:
1. Start NOW (but only because you can't start yesterday)
2. Be YOURSELF. This is a marathon and I think people who try to be something other than what they are burn out. It is just too much work.
3. Find a roll model and follow them around mimicking them to the degree you can (mine was Elizabeth Spann Craig)
4. Reciprocate BEFORE! Meaning if you want people to come find you, go find them. If you want to hear from readers, read blogs and let people know you are there. ALL the things you want to be on the receiving end of, DO THOSE for others.
5. HAVE FUN! This is contagious, you know. If you are having a ball, others will join you hoping it will rub off on them.
That's my story and I'm sticking with it!
The Azalea Assault
Cam Harris loves her job as public relations manager for the Roanoke Garden Society. It allows her to combine her three loves, spinning the press, showing off her favorite town, and promoting her favorite activity. She's just achieved a huge coup by enlisting Garden Delights, the country's premiere gardening magazine, to feature the exquisite garden of RGS founder, Neil Patrick. She's even managed to enlist world-famous photographer Jean-Jacques Georges. Unfortunately, Jean-Jacques is a first-rate cad—insulting the RGS members and gardening, goosing every woman in the room, and drinking like a lush. It is hardly a surprise when he turns up dead. But when Cam's brother-in-law is accused and her sister begs her to solve the crime, that is when things really get prickly.
Alyse Carlson is the pen name for the author some of you may know as Hart Johnson. She writes books from her bathtub and when she isn't writing, does research for a large, midwest University or leads the Naked World Domination Movement (your choice).
The Azalea Assault is available at:
Barnes & Noble Paperback or Nook
Amazon Paperback or Kindle
(pretty much any book store and some big boxes)
And Alyse/Hart/The Tart can be found at:
Confessions of a Watery Tart