Tag Archives: author

Launch Day a Family-Fractured Fairy Tale

28 Aug

Sunday night at five hours until my latest title would go on sale an ominous feeling weighed heavy on my shoulders. The phone rang shortly thereafter and set in motion the wheels of another family crisis in an ongoing saga. Anyone who understands about putting the “fun” in dysfunctional family, you know you can almost guarantee that someone is going to break something, hurt someone or otherwise upset a perfectly decent day at any time.

If you’ve read my book “The Crowded Nest Syndrome,” a humorous look at the return of adult children, you’ll know the cast of characters, one of which deflated my launch day. I ended up on the highways, blood pressure soaring from 5 am until after 8:30 pm on my August 26th. Did I get a chance to send out tweets of joy? No. Did I get to relish in the congratulations of friends and family? No. I know the rule “Family before fame,” (I just made that up) but (ready to stomp my foot in a pout) I was really looking forward to this day with all of you. Isn’t that what social media is all about? Getting to shout and tweet and post the wonders of a new book?

I missed the birth of “Her Ghost Wears Kilts.” By the time I returned home to wi-fi and a computer in the dark of night, I was thoroughly drained of energy and personality. There are powerful people out there who can wring the life out of you if locked in a position of listening to them for hours at a time with no escape.

Launch Day-plus-one celebration.

Launch Day-plus-one celebration.

This morning I crawled to my day job knowing I’d face an inbox of customers needing help and a stack of finished books from calling in absent on a Monday. Not overwhelming, because I knew we all cover what we can for each other when someone’s out. But (get the Kleenex ready) Kate, from production, came in with a gorgeous bouquet she’d created herself and a delicious cookie pizza with “Best Author” across it. Oh, how the tears fell. And, yes, I Photoshopped some of the puffiness from under my eyes. Jeez, I’d been crying and she wants to take a picture!

Okay, so I missed the official Launch Day – doesn’t mean the party’s over, I’m just getting warmed up. My virtual blog tour doesn’t start until Sept. 16 and there is much to do and people to encourage to enjoy the perils of HGWK. And those who pre-ordered and are now able to jump into the story of Baillie will soon be telling their friends.  Right? Doesn’t mean HGWK can’t make the best-selling list of paranormal romances about ghosts.

Right??? You betcha.

 

Available for Pre-Order Now

12 Aug

Magic Monday came at six this morning seeing “Her Ghost Wears Kilts” listed on Amazon.com. This starts the two-week pre-order window by Crimson Romance for the eBook edition. It is also available at iTunes and will soon be listed with Barnes & Noble for Nook readers.

How intense should marketing be for pre-orders versus waiting until the book releases for sales? This is an interesting question and one I’m finding with a variety of responses.

What are your feelings on the topic? I look forward to hearing your comments.

Postcards by Ninth Moon

4 Aug

KS_PSTRCD_FT_1aI love the quality of my new postcards designed and printed by Ninth Moon for writers here in western Washington. I’ve already passed out quite a few and will keep at least a dozen in my purse and notebook. You never know who you may be talking to during the day. And for a romance book, I’m checking out the women in line with me at the grocery store or in mini groups during football practice.

I didn’t have my mailing list ready to go once they got here. Note to self and others: best thing to fill the time waiting for the cards is ordering or buying postcard rate stamps and revise your address list to included anyone and everyone you feel would be responsive to your title.

Her Ghost Wears Kilts come out in three weeks which is a great time to send out postcards. People can display them on their desks, tuck into their desk calendars and pin to their bulletin boards. Hopefully it’s in a public location where others will see it and comment on the bright cover design starting a word-of-mouth campaign.

For some of those I’ve chosen for my Street Team, I’ll send them ten postcards, pre-stamped, to address to their friends and send out. This will reach another level of readers I wouldn’t normally know.

It’s a warm Sunday morning, a load of laundry is running, the dishwasher is humming and I’ve exercised the pups. Now it’s time to start addressing the postcards to go out in tomorrow’s mail. Three weeks and counting.

Marketing Thoughts

29 Jul

Heading into three weeks and counting before the big release of HGWK, I contacted Penny Sansevieri at Author Marketing Experts looking for information and estimates on doing a virtual book tour. She sent back her proposal today, so I’ll be reviewing the various packages she has suggested. Serendipitously (okay, that’s my favorite word today) my first blog interview for HGWK was posted by Book Country.

I’ve been a member of Book Country for months enjoying the writers’ community where I could upload draft copies of my chapters for review by my peers. As I do not currently belong to a writers group, Book Country filled that void for me. And being a published author, I contributed to the discussion boards where I could pass along some of the experience I’ve gathered over the years. If you haven’t checked out their site, now is the perfect time. They’ve included more genre types. I love the new look of their website now.

Just a short note for today. I need to work on the sequel tonight.

 

 

36 Days and Counting

23 Jul

At the stroke of midnight, Monday August 26th my paranormal dramedy Her Ghost Wears Kilts goes on sale. That’s thirty-six days from now. Cover image posted on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and my website with the release date: check. Blog set up for the book: check. Initial contact made to Author Marketing Expert services, Penny Sansevieri. Thirty-six days and so much still to do.

Postcards ordered with Ninth Moon promotional services. I’ve already received my promotion stickers with the cover image and release date. Next step is the postcards.

Need to research and send out celebrity endorsement requests. I don’t have a list made. Do I want to shoot for best-selling authors in the romance field or do I send to actresses I see as perfect for the protagonist? Sally Fields is the first name that comes to mind or Valerie Bertenelli, she’s always fun in a Lifetime made for TV movie. Time to subscribe to Contact Any Celebrity for at least a month and find addresses for sending out request letters.

I need to gather names for my Street Team, close friends and family who are willing to work at spreading the word about my latest book.

I understand two weeks before the release date, the eBook will be available for pre-orders. Do I focus most of my advertising energy to gain pre-orders or spread the news around but punch into high gear once the eBook is available? Do my readers want immediate gratification by reading the book as soon as it is purchased? Or patient enough to order early and remember to put HGWK at the top of their list once it is downloaded to their account? Decisions, decisions.

Stay tuned for more. I need to get a few pages written on the sequel and get plenty of sleep for my day job at Gorham Printing.

Sunday Dilemmas

21 Jul

It’s early morning and an entire day stretches out before me – no errands, no visitors expected. How do I fill the hours from the basket of writing possibilities? I don’t want to reach the end of “60 Minutes” tonight and play the shoulda, woulda, coulda game. That’s a given. But we’re running out of forks, so doing a load of dishes is a must sometime today. Think, think.

Do I block two-hour increments toward marketing for HGWK, which then has a list of subcategories I could block time for? One of which is reading my copy of “Red Hot Internet Marketing” by Penny Sansevieri and highlighting ideas and concepts. Read one chapter and make a to-do list – that’s a feasible goal. One post on Facebook, one tweet on Twitter, check. What about working on the sequel “Murder in the Castle” (working title)?A 72,000 word manuscript doesn’t write itself. The characters are tapping their toes wondering when it will be their turn to dazzle on a blank page. Goal today? One to three pages – a page a day finishes a manuscript in a year.

Baby steps – isn’t that what I always say in my classes? Whether a newbie writer or a well-published author with a new book on deck, don’t overwhelm yourself – succeed at a few things consistently, baby steps.

Now, do I hang a copy of the schedule on my back so that family members will respect my time? Hmm, why bother as they won’t see it from shouting my name from the next room. But I can pin it to the front of my shirt and remind myself of my priorities.  It’s my passion, my books are my dreams and no one is going to magically part the waters of responsibilities and life for me. I must demand the time of myself because I deserve it.

Ready? Begin!

Advance Reviews and Endorsements

17 Jul

Before your book is published, you need to build a list of possible readers, celebrities, known names you’d like have read your book and possibly provide an advanced review. Your list can include other authors in the same genre or field as yours, names that would lend credence to the quality of your work.

One name on my list to send an ARC (advanced review copy) was Cheril Vendetti, an incredible stand-up comic, chef and author. Her Ghost Wears Kilts is a romantic comedy and who better to request a quote from but a national entertainer and fellow author. The scary part? Will someone who makes a living making people laugh and feel good find my characters loveable? Ms. Vendetti was kind enough, during her busy schedule of appearances and travel, to not leave me chewing my fingernails for long. See her response below:

“I loved this book, it kept me interested from the first page, I could not put it down. Kathleen is a wonderful writer that knows her craft and makes you feel you are inside the pages with all the characters. Truly a delight. Man, can this woman write!”
                          — Cheril Vendetti, infamous stand-up comedienne aka “The Italian Floozy.” Author of a funny cookbook about Mobsters, mayhem, macaroni and of course her mother, called “MISTRESS OF THE MOB CUISINE.”

Take the risk and ask. What is the worst they could say, but no. Who would you like to see reading your book?