Write on, Wednesday! How to Market your Books

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By Leslie Lindsay

If you think you’re the author and “they” are the publisher, and it is up to “them” to sell your book, you’re wrong.  Sure, the publisher does a lot:  they read your entire manuscript, they make suggestions and changes, and give you advice along the way.  They typeset your book, design the cover (sometimes the interior illustrations), bind it, print it, and distribute it.  (And there may be a few more things that I am not privy to at this stage), but do they sell it??  Well, not really.

Sure, your publisher may pop a picture of the cover of your book into their catalog–which is very exciting–and then distribute that catalog to folks on their mailing list, but that doesn’t guarantee your book will get purchased.  Your publisher may get your book on Amazon, which is huge…and you may be able to find it in local bookstores and “big box” bookstores.  (here’s hoping).

But you–author friend–will have to speak for the book.  I have been reading John Kremer’s “1001 Ways to Market Your Books: For Authors & Publishers” (2006) and let me just say: it’s humbling.

Product Details So, I have been thinking creatively–that is–how can I make sure everyone who is remotely touched by a speech disorder, early intervention, reading awareness, early childhood education, childhood apraxia of speech, special needs, coping with special needs, and making the most of your child’s diagnosis…gets their hands on my book.

Here are a few ideas from the book that are floating around in my brain:

  • Go on a local bookstore tour
  • Have your book with you at all times so you can “show” everyone when they ask.  (Hey, I’m from Missouri–the “show me” state!)
  • Take yourself on a local book tour.  Go to your hometown, your college town, your first-job town…whatever…
  • Have a book launch party
  • Speak at local schools, doctor’s offices, libraries, rotary clubs, garden clubs, book groups.  Charge a fee for this and sell your book there
  • Go to local and state conferences related to your book (especially  good for non-fiction).
  • Send lots of letters to lots of people/create a database of folks you ought to reach out to, and those you are in regular contact with…

Whew!  And now…before I put the cart before the horse, I better get back to revising that book I am gonna promote come early 2012.

2 responses »

  1. For you I’d see if you can have a vendor booth or talk at your state SLP convention (usually the initial of your state plus ‘sha (speech language, and hearing association). You could also look at local Special Ed parent advocacy groups that sometimes offer trainings or support groups.

    • Thanks for the tips! Yes–all of those ideas sound like something I would reach out and do. In fact, I just became a member of the Illinois Speech-Hearing-Association this week. Take care!

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