Saturday, December 18, 2010

Book Promotion From Home

I’m going to get personal today. Not that I think you Dear Readers are particularly interested in getting all up in my business, but as John Corrigan noted in an earlier post, often our actual lives greatly affect our writing lives. How do you deal with it?

A bit of background: Two weeks before the launch of my fourth book, The Sky Took Him, in January of 2009, my husband suffered a life-threatening emergency that required a long hospitalization, followed by some short hospitalizations for several procedures you don’t want to know about, a couple of operations, and an endless recuperation period. The effects of all this are still with us, and I expect will be from now on. The point of my dredging this all up again is that due to the timing and length of this totally unexpected kick in the head, I had to cancel at the last minute nearly every book event I had scheduled for the release of that book.

I’ll tell you right now, this is not a good thing for one's career, all the family trauma notwithstanding. I don’t care how compelling your reasons are, or how understanding people are of your dilemma, you’re still leaving them in the lurch and you will have to pay for it. Both in money, especially if you withdraw from a conference too late for a refund, and in good will if you leave groups without a speaker at the last possible moment. I’m not complaining about it. These things happen. It just is what it is.

The sense of having let people down has traumatized me, I think. I find that I’m hesitant to make firm travel or personal appearance plans too far into the future any more. It’s like that old joke about being too old to buy green bananas. You never know about tomorrow, let alone six months from now.

Now it seems I have some health issues of my own that have to be taken care of -- nothing nearly as serious as Don’s, I hasten to say, but enough to crimp my styles. And irony of ironies, when does this occur? Right. Just before a new book comes out.
At least I have time to plan, this time. I’ll be doing personal appearance events close to home and as much promotion by mail and through cyberspace as I can manage.

A couple of days before the launch of her newest Deborah Knot novel, Christmas Mourning, Margaret Maron was cracked up in a car wreck. She was bruised and broken, but will be okay. Still, her book tour was messed up. Even so, all her friends and admirers in the mystery community promoted her book for her all over the web.
Our own Vicki Delany, whose latest book Negative Image was recently released, did some excellent online promotion for it. How many guest blogs did you do, Vicki? Dozens?. And the mystery community touted the book online as well.

Supporting each other is a wonderful thing. And by the way, if any of you have brilliant ideas for sedentary book promotion, I’m all ears.

Speaking of cyber promotion, last May. Libby Fischer Hellmann wrote a guest entry for us here at Type M outlining her plan to publish an original ebook. Tomorrow she returns to let us in on what she has learned from the experience. I urge you to come back and see what she has to say, because she has some extremely useful advice that will benefit any author who intends to publish or promote an ebook.


Vicki Delany said...

So sorry to hear you're not well. I think my blog tour went very well. I did probably 12 blogs. It's a lot of work, just writing all those articles. Of course I also did as many in-store booksignings this season.

Donis Casey said...

I've been trying to get ahead of the game by keeping a file of pre-written essays on every writing topic I can think of that can be used as is or altered to fit, or just as inspiration for creating a guest blog entry whenever the opportunity arises.

John R Corrigan said...

Get well soon!

Donis Casey said...

Thanks, John and Vicki.

Rick Blechta said...

Yes, get well! Soon!!

peter_may said...

Look after yourself, Donis,

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