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  #1  
Old 03-01-2013, 06:29 PM
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I've heard that a great way to generate publicity for a book is to contact a book blogger.

I’m asking this because I am at the point where I am looking to have an interview to generate more interest about my debut novel.

I looked at a web site that pointed to the success of one author who used this method to drum up support for her recently published e-book:

http://bestsellerlabs.com/how-to-get...for-your-book/

Though I must say I’ve already looked into blogger’s who specialize in interviews. One of them, in the application form, demanded the ISBN number of the book. I haven't finished my book much less published it. It may be some time before this book is up on the market...

In my case, I haven’t finished my book yet. I just want an interview, a type of informal FAQ session. I think in this day and age the Internet is almost as powerful if not more powerful a marketing tool for new media, than say, newspaper or magazine copy.

Twitter, Facebook, I’ve heard are good for promoting the book. Another thing that I’ve heard is effective, is once the book is published, say on Amazon, if you get at least three five star or four star reviews, readers will give credence to that. May even buy it!

I think writing a debut novel is a challenge particularly in the publicity department, because you don’t have an established track record as an author. This is your first book, and so readers don’t know you from Adam. Perhaps, in the case of debut novels doing publishing the traditional route is the most effective.

Random house, scholastic, Thomas Nelson all of these are big name publishers with reputations to match. Even though people don’t know your name, they’ve heard of these publishers. That said, I’m sure these publishers only take a few not-well-known authors a year. Ofc, it’s a rational economic decision on their part. They are uncertain that you will make money for them, and if they have doubts about whether people like what you write, they probably won’t give you a book deal.

And then there’s the self publishing route.

$1000 ISBN number, and cover design, proofreading, layout design

$2000 all the above and a website repping your book

$3000 they show your book at a book fair get a lot of reviewers to review it

$4000 you get the idea

I wonder if this is effective. Has anyone ever gone this route? To me, there is a stark difference between self publishing for free on kindle publishing direct and paying 4000 to a “self”-publishing house. Of course the publisher has a lot of experience, and may be able to give you a lot of suggestions about how to improve your book. But if your book is good to begin with, it may be lucrative either way.

I think what motivates people to self-publish is this rebellious attitude. “I’m not gonna send my manuscript to a publisher, just so four weeks later I get a rejection letter in the mail.”

Someone who I know personally recently self-published a book she wrote about dating on the Internet. As I read through it, I truly enjoyed it lot. It was a short read, took me about 2 hours. But as I read it I noticed there were many errors. The overall experience of reading the book was not hampered by a typo here and there, but I’m sure if she submitted this to a traditional publisher there be someone who would point out those few knits and OMIT them before it went up on Amazon.

Thoughts?

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Old 03-02-2013, 01:26 AM
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$1000 ISBN number, and cover design, proofreading, layout design

$2000 all the above and a website repping your book

$3000 they show your book at a book fair get a lot of reviewers to review it

$4000 you get the idea
Nope. I don't.

I've paid all of $60 thus far for editing (helping a good editor get his foot in the freelance editing door; I'm an editor myself), "gifted" one of the photographers on Flickr with $25 (I used his photograph -- free, and could be used for commercial purposes; I "gifted" him as a way of saying "thank you"), and will be another $30 to copyright my work. ("Oh, then it must be crap!" Right. Pfft. No. Not from one who has a perfectionist's drive.)

Please. It just takes a little more ingenuity on the writer's part. Who the heck would pay that much to self-pub a book nowadays?

I think what motivates people to self-publish is this rebellious attitude. “I’m not gonna send my manuscript to a publisher, just so four weeks later I get a rejection letter in the mail.”
I had a different motivation. Having been on both sides of the fence, as a writer AND working for a small publisher . . . I refused to smack my head against the brick wall of subjectivity and the rule of money. Publishers have a different bottom line than I do. And I'm going to die someday. I'd rather go to my grave knowing I actually did something than to sit on my deathbed going, "Why didn't I . . . ?"
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Old 03-02-2013, 06:48 AM
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Being asked for the ISBN is normal practice and nothing to worry about. Most reviewing/book bloggers will want to know details such as: publisher, date of publication, gere, author, ISBN, some even ask for websites. Most important detail being the blurb.

Some sites won't review self-pubbed authors. I know a few that do. Some won't do ARCs (advance reader copies), but Most will review once a book is published. All do author interviews. You just have to be specific with what you're asking for.

If it's a first novel, I'd try and get it published first (either commercial or self-pub). The biggerthe house you're with commercially, the less work you'll have to do on the promotion side (they'll have their own marketing department). As you move to smaller epubs (indies) doing some walking of reviewing sites becomes good advice. Some indies may not have the marketing department. With self-pubbing, you will be your marketing department.

I waited until my novel was relased with my publishing company, then I approached the reviweing sites. I've had five of the six approached say yes and write reviews, but I've also have other reviwing sites pick it up in the process through word of mouth.

I haven't thought about interviews yet. I wanted to see how the novel went down. I've had the first reviewng site ask If I wanted to do a interview, to also coincide with a giveway they'll fund.

It really just depends how you want to handle things.

When it comes to Amazon... I've been lucky enough to get 8 reviews on there so far. Most of those have come through goodreads. But Goodreads continues to be the best social site for me so far. The readers are a pleasure to talk to, and I'm a reader foremost who'll review and rate also, so it's a good social platform.

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Old 03-02-2013, 06:50 PM
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Devon and Whiskers, thanks for your feedback

Who the heck would pay that much to self-pub a book nowadays?
I dunno, perhaps someone who is rich and maybe just wants to say he/she can "write a book and have it published." not that that makes it worthwhile

I'd rather go to my grave knowing I actually did something than to sit on my deathbed going, "Why didn't I . . . ?"
Good for you. As Nike says, "just do it."

Sounds like it is standard to get reviewed AFTER the book is published and not before. Maybe I'm thinking of actors getting interviewed about a film before it comes out. Anyways, those people are famous, and their publicist/agent probably arrange those interviews..
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Old 03-06-2013, 01:45 PM
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I really hated the idea of blogging and twittering and all of that. But every time I had meetings with publishers, one of the questions that they would ask me was "How many followers do you have?" I had no clue what they meant. I made a couple jokes about starting a cult until they explained it to me.

Evidently, publishers are not just interested in your manuscript, but also your ability to market and promote your book. It sucks. I hate it. I always feel dirty saying, "Hey, I have this book called Riddle in Stone....um, want to buy it?"

But that's what writing is nowadays. My agent really insisted that I start a blog. And I have to say, it does help. I'm met a ton of WONDERFUL people on facebook and my blog and so forth. I don't know if I've sold any more books than I would have, but at least I made some terrific friends!
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Old 03-06-2013, 04:11 PM
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"Hey, I have this book called Riddle in Stone....um, want to buy it?"
*scuttles in* Yes. Please do! It's really good! *dashes out*
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Old 03-07-2013, 08:17 AM
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I dont purchase off of blogs because they could be the bloggers granny trying her hand at her first quilt novel about the quilt of our lives or some such snoreville LOL

SO I would NEVER pay for it. Now if a friend wanted to do a review on their blog... That sound fab!

I hate networking and self promo, so Ill die poor but ats okay
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Old 03-07-2013, 09:39 AM
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Originally Posted by RobertEvert View Post
I don't know if I've sold any more books than I would have, but at least I made some terrific friends!
Are you tracking your sales through NovelRank? I know anything to do with amazon is only a best guess, but it will show you a rough guide to when/ (potentially) how many sales you've had.
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Old 03-07-2013, 03:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Whiskers View Post
Are you tracking your sales through NovelRank? I know anything to do with amazon is only a best guess, but it will show you a rough guide to when/ (potentially) how many sales you've had.
No! I never heard of it. Thanks.

But the sales will never be huge. It's just an e-book. I just need to sell enough to please my publishers so they'll have me write something else.

And, to tell you the truth, I'm most worried about whether people will like it or not. It's my first novel. I just don't want it to stink!
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Old 03-07-2013, 11:27 PM
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Originally Posted by RobertEvert View Post
No! I never heard of it. Thanks.

But the sales will never be huge. It's just an e-book. I just need to sell enough to please my publishers so they'll have me write something else.

And, to tell you the truth, I'm most worried about whether people will like it or not. It's my first novel. I just don't want it to stink!

Just an ebook? Don't sell yourself short on where you've got to. You were published, when? Feb 26th 2013? And you'e had 15 rates/ten reviews on Goodreads? That's not a bad average.

Some people won't like your book. Reading's subjective, you know that, so you're not going to please everyone: don't even try. Even more, don't let it worry you.
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Old 03-08-2013, 05:18 AM
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Reviews sell a book better than anything IMO.

Have you encouraged friends who like this genre to read and give you a review?

I know thats scary but important
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Old 03-08-2013, 06:25 AM
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I'm going to review it, once I'm finished.
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Old 03-08-2013, 06:35 AM
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PS Ebooks sell just fine with the right amount of reviews and push.

Devon, here seems to have your back! I know that I have it saved in my favorites under reco from her so... There you go
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Old 03-08-2013, 09:53 AM
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Originally Posted by calligraphy View Post
Have you encouraged friends who like this genre to read and give you a review?
Just a polite note, If a free copy was given to a friend for a review, it's best to state it in a disclaimer at the top of the review (especially if the reader is a friend). It's not just the writer's reputaion at stake, but also yours.

Goodreads have a few sections where you can offer up free copies in exchange for objective reviews.
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Old 03-08-2013, 04:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Whiskers View Post
Just an ebook? Don't sell yourself short on where you've got to. You were published, when? Feb 26th 2013? And you'e had 15 rates/ten reviews on Goodreads? That's not a bad average.

Some people won't like your book. Reading's subjective, you know that, so you're not going to please everyone: don't even try. Even more, don't let it worry you.


Yes, I can't complain. The book is selling well and it appears the publisher wants the second book.

But Calli is right. Books sell by word-of-mouth. And fortunately, I have several wonderful people who seem to like the book and are willing to talk about it.

I'm very, very fortunate!
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Old 03-09-2013, 07:15 AM
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Originally Posted by RobertEvert View Post

But Calli is right. Books sell by word-of-mouth. And fortunately, I have several wonderful people who seem to like the book and are willing to talk about it.

I'm very, very fortunate!
Word-of-mouth is good so long as it's objective. I wouldn't purchase a book based on a review from a friend of the author, but I would if it was from a review site or if the reader was in a community of readers.
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Old 03-09-2013, 07:34 AM
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What about someone who's not quite a friend of the author, but knows him/her from online interactions? According to some, online "friendships" aren't really friendships since you can't physically be there for a person.

Still don't get that.

But anyway, what if you'd gotten to know the author, love his/her book, recommend it and such based solely on the writing and plot and all else . . . does that mean it's not valid? Am I the author's friend or just an acquaintance, and if the former, why wouldn't it be valid if I truly like the book? If the latter, then it should matter, since online friendships truly (apparently!) don't exist, right?

Answer me that one, eh?
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Old 03-09-2013, 08:31 AM
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I think all reviews are biased in some way. In the end, all you can really do is read the first chapter or so and decide for yourself.
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Old 03-09-2013, 08:44 AM
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I agree. *nods*
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Old 03-09-2013, 09:32 AM
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Sorry Awriter920! I think I got your thread off track!

Getting back to your original post, I think blogs can be very helpful in gaining a following and creating a "brand" for yourself. But it does take time...time that I'd rather spend on writing. Still, you might find it enjoy able.

If you start a blog, let me know. I'll drop by!!!
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Old 03-09-2013, 10:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Devon View Post
What about someone who's not quite a friend of the author, but knows him/her from online interactions? According to some, online "friendships" aren't really friendships since you can't physically be there for a person.

Still don't get that.

But anyway, what if you'd gotten to know the author, love his/her book, recommend it and such based solely on the writing and plot and all else . . . does that mean it's not valid? Am I the author's friend or just an acquaintance, and if the former, why wouldn't it be valid if I truly like the book? If the latter, then it should matter, since online friendships truly (apparently!) don't exist, right?

Answer me that one, eh?
You just add full disclosure to the review I've seen authors review another author in their own genre and simply write:

(Disclaimer: this is a review of an author in my genre)

Or an author who has received a free copy for review:

(Full disclosure: this copy was provided free of charge for review purposes).

So long as the reviewer is up front with the relationship on the review page itself, you could be best friends with the person.

It gets awkward when authors start rating for themselves (e.g. on the likes of goodreads) or they vote for themselves in the listopia votes, or they open sneak accounts and vote that way for themselves, or they even aren't upfront with a relationship between a particular reviewer and themselves. Other readers pick up on it pretty quickly and things get awkward.

There's an interesting article here ((friend reviews are discussed toward the end):

Sock Puppetry and fake reviews
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Old 04-08-2013, 03:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Whiskers View Post
Just a polite note, If a free copy was given to a friend for a review, it's best to state it in a disclaimer at the top of the review (especially if the reader is a friend). It's not just the writer's reputaion at stake, but also yours.
I agree. A friend of mine went in and reviewed a couple of my books. Within a few days someone else reviewed the book and said "the reviewer is probably a friend, having only reviewed two books, both from this guy". He was right. Encourage your friends to be honest and disclose their bias.

Joel
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Old 04-19-2013, 08:36 AM
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I first want to state that having friends offer reviews of your work actually hurt your book's credibility. When people hear that your friends or family members rave about the book they automatically think "of course they think its great" I actually don't buy books from authors who only have reviews from family and friends.

Professional bloggers or bloggers with a large following can actually be your book's life blood. They already have a list of followers interested in your type of books and their followers trust their opinion on book reviews. Either way you get a few more sales than you had previously. Problem is many professional bloggers are inundated with book review requests and it may take a while for them to get to reading yours.

For those writers that are afraid to market their work I say that's ok if you simply write for the joy of it. However, if you are trying to make a buck from your work (which most of us are) than marketing is one of the many hats you must wear.
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Old 04-28-2013, 07:53 AM
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Publishing is much like any business. When we ask about how many followers do you have, we're asking to be sure you have started the promo game. There are a ton of authors out there (I've worked with some) who think they'll write the book, drop it into the publisher's lap and make a million. I can only wish for something like that lol.

However, don't give up. If you're interested in an interview pre-release/contract feel free to shout me a message or email me (crimsonfrostbooks at gmail dot com (without the spaces). I've got a bunch of questions and I'm open to taking on authors for my author blogs - even new ones who are looking to get into the industry.

Quite honestly, your limitations are only going to be the ones you've put in your way.



Originally Posted by RobertEvert View Post
I really hated the idea of blogging and twittering and all of that. But every time I had meetings with publishers, one of the questions that they would ask me was "How many followers do you have?" I had no clue what they meant. I made a couple jokes about starting a cult until they explained it to me.

Evidently, publishers are not just interested in your manuscript, but also your ability to market and promote your book. It sucks. I hate it. I always feel dirty saying, "Hey, I have this book called Riddle in Stone....um, want to buy it?"

But that's what writing is nowadays. My agent really insisted that I start a blog. And I have to say, it does help. I'm met a ton of WONDERFUL people on facebook and my blog and so forth. I don't know if I've sold any more books than I would have, but at least I made some terrific friends!
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