Marketing For You
The latest issue of hitchnews, the bookhitch.com newsletter, focuses on marketing and sales of your newly published book. Whether self-published or through the official biz, you have to market your own these days, and hitch makes a couple of worthwhile suggestions:
• Hire a biz school graduate student (or some likely equivalent) to promote your book. This person will probably need the money, has some academically-gained savvy regarding marketing, and may recognize this as resume material.
• Stephanie Chandler is the author of several books, and she gave us a lot of suggestions (some already stated above) on how to market your book at a low cost. “-Publish interesting articles along with an author bio that mentions your book and website. Find sites that reach your target audience and accept article submissions and submit your article as a free reprint (you can repurpose the same article dozens of times). You can also make your articles available for reprint through sites like http://www.ezinearticles.com and http://www.ideamarketers.com. Be a guest on podcasts, teleseminars and Internet radio programs. The benefits are great: the host will promote you to their entire network, you will often get up to a full hour to talk about your book, and most programs archive the data on their websites indefinitely for ongoing exposure. Locate shows that reach your target audience through sites like http://www.wsradio.com, http://www.blogtalkradio.com, http://www.planetteleclass.com, and http://www.itunes.com.”
And for your strategy planning, hitchnews has polled the ten most web-searched genres of 2008:
Adult Reading Up For Fiction
If you’re a fiction writer, as I am, you’ll be doing hopeful handsprings at this news from The New York Times.http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/12/books/12reading.html?_r=1&emc=eta1
Proving that things always run in cycles, NYT reports from a NEA study that literary reading has risen some 3.5% since 2002. A similar rise over the next half-decade may put literary reading up to the level of the early eighties.
Crazyhorse – The Litmag – Fall 2008
It has to be hard choosing material for literary magazines. First, tons of manuscripts are flung over the various transoms. Then the judges have to pick between the styles, the increasingly good literary ideas. And, with double handfuls of good pieces, the staff has to find a way to narrow things down to a number of manuscripts that can be published within the magazine’s budget.
Crazyhorse seems to prefer to traffic in volumes – I say, volumes! – of poetry. And none of it’s bad. Still, the judges choose – wisely – to temper poesy with prose. First, short stories, then the more interesting of the non-fiction submitted.
In this, the fall 2008 issue of Crazyhorse, the keystone piece is one entitled “What Lies In Closets,” by Kat Meads. If I were to have a vote on Crazyhorse’s staff, I’d have placed this one at center stage, too. The piece is something of a biography – of Patty Hearst. For those who had their heads buried in bongs at the time, or for those young enough to say “Who cares?” about Sixties radicalism, Hearst was (is) a well-known publisher’s daughter.
She was kidnapped by a radical group and held. Oh, ransom was mentioned, but that’s not the interesting part of the story. An alleged victim of Stockholm Syndrome, she became Tania, a member of the bad guys’ gang. But I’ll cut the bio short there, or I’ll begin to rant myself, as Meads tends to do at times.
Meads sees Hearst here as I do – not as a victim, but as a rich kid playing at life, one who to this day remains insulated from one of real life’s most dramatic and celebrated dramas. The author’s text doesn’t flow – it leaps, hopscotches through Hearst’s story, yet manages to build dramatic tension as she goes.
Its ending let me down a bit with a short screed of sarcasm that the essay hardly needed. Still, this sort of writing is what litmags are all about: damn the torpedoes! Experiment, try new things! If you think it through well enough, the story or essay or poem will find a good literary home, and some blogger will take the time to praise it.