I was reading this month’s magazine when I came upon a little piece about me and my books. It was such a long time since I sent it in I had forgotten all about it.
I should have added a web address but otherwise it was fine, although I always think other writers cannot possibly read books by all the authors who submit to Writing Magazine. Just occasionally a review or a story might make a reader search out more by that writer and one can hope that a publisher might be curious enough to find out whether one would be a good bet for promotion.
Having been told once that my work was’not commercial’ I gave up sending to agents. It is enough to constantly be asked for another book by the folk who do buy a copy. It will be interesting to find out if anyone shows an interest at the UK Southern Book Show on 28th October at Field Place, Worthing. It should be a great showcase.
Thinking it was about time I wrote something about the writing process I asked myself what is it that helps a writer to do their own first edit?
We all try to spot spelling, punctuation and continuity errors before we send our work off but I don’t think everyone reads their written work out loud. I suppose it is easy with poetry but perhaps some folk think reading prose is boring and makes them doubt the worth of what they have written.
When we read in a familiar writing group we often find mistakes and correct them as we go along. Also, we get feed back as to whether the dialogue actually fits the character or the period, but if you do not belong to a group, what do you do? You could record yourself reading or just shut yourself away and try not to feel stupid! You don’t have to be an actor – if no-one else is listening just think of it as an alternative editing method. I believe you’ll find it useful.
Of course, nothing is as helpful as another pair of eyes!
I had two ideas this morning, one: to make some flyers to advertise my latest novel as I haven’t had any new bookmarks printed. I can take them to talks and they will be ready for the UK Southern Book Show in October. Two – I would like ” Lane’s End” my first novel to be available in large print as it was written for my late mother who only read large print books. I have seen ways to do it on print on demand but I am hesitant to go down that route. Also, I wanted a new cover but, so far, haven’t found one that is better than the original. At least it’s keeping me busy.
‘A Bend in the Lane’ is out on Friday and I have been parcelling up review copies and designing invitations to the launch.
This time I have put all my previous titles in the back of the book but I didn’t ask for reviews or put in a chapter of the next book as advised on twitter.
Every time I try to load the cover image it takes ages but it’s such a great picture I’ll try again. It is Italian because the man in the story tries to get someone to invest in an Italian property. However, as usual, a lot of the action takes place in Sussex. I did include the Eden Project as I was keen to go there and it seemed the next best thing!
More about self publishing. I have been rereading advice about how to market self published novels and as I don’t do many ebooks I still need to promote my work the old fashioned way, as a publisher, not just the author. Therefore I need to do what a publisher would do for their client.
I need to contact the media, send out information, notify the local and national press and suitable magazines, make up a ‘press pack,’ get in touch with the local radio, organise a book launch and signing and send out review copies. Anything else?
I will advertise on twitter, but only to show I am still active as the two ebooks I have written will appeal more to folk on line than this new one.
I will remind people that I have a couple of websites, http://www.juliecround.co.uk and http://www.juliecround.com, both of which are linked to this blog and I will put the cover of ‘A Bend in the Lane’ onto every piece of marketing I can, possibly new business cards, although I still have a lot left with ‘Never Pretend’ and ‘A Lesson for the Teacher’ on.
Since Southern Rail have been so unreliable I haven’t been to London so all my marketing, including sending copies to the library, has been local.
One more month and I should have copies for sale. It is said the first three months are the optimum time for sales and I’m hoping to catch the holiday market.
My next book is with the printer and I have been reading advice about marketing. The general consensus seems to be that one should tell all and sundry that the book is coming out months in advance. However, I don’t feel inclined to do too much until I have the copies in my hand. I know this is different for people who use Print-on -Demand but I sell so many privately that I order 100 at a time.
I will be giving more details in the future but here is the cover.
I’m taking a break from editing my new novel to check emails and I thought I’d write a piece about my book launches.
My first launch, in 2007, was held in our house as I did not expect many people to be interested. The second was held at a local garden centre as one featured in the story and I treated the visitors to free tea and a scone! The next was held at a leisure centre as the girl in the story was a sportswoman and the fourth was held in a local pub/restaurant because, by then,I wanted to make sure everyone could find car parking and, if they wished, stay for lunch after the free coffee.
The fifth book was launched in our favourite pub, which I had also put in the book, although I hadn’t named it and for the sixth I launched with a couple of other writers in the previous hostelry. However, this was not quite as successful for me, probably because I had not initiated the advertising.
Book launches do not seem to attract newspaper reporters unless the proceeds are going to charity. I did get a photographer to the launch in the Leisure Centre although I never did see the write-up (if there was one)
I don’t launch in bookshops as the wholesaler only supplies shops if they are ordered. They will not accept books from me as the publisher.
I hope to sell at least a dozen copies at each launch and do have a few readers who support me every time and one who buys in bulk for Christmas presents.
I am now scouting for somewhere to launch my next book. It must have parking, refreshments and preferably a connection to the story. I think I may go back to the garden centre. I would like somewhere on a bus route but nowhere comes to mind.