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Monday, December 12, 2011

Class Is In Session

The new marketplace demands that authors and publishers pursue all possible ways to sell a book to and beyond bookstores.  One avenue is to approach schools and seek out sales opportunities. Though it can be a time-consuming process, reaching out to schools can yield benefits. Here are some things to consider:

1.      Contact the school’s PTA to offer an opportunity to present a workshop or reading of your book at a school function.  You may interest them in buying your book to resell as a fundraiser.

2.      Contact the school librarian to see if he/she will order your book.  Even better, align with a wholesaler, such as Overdrive, who sells to libraries.

3.      Contact the principal or school board to see if they will include your book either for class adoption or a recommended reading list that circulates to parents.

4.      Contact teachers to see if you can present to the students in their class.

5.      Send your book for review to School Library Journal, a key publication that reviews and recommends books for the school market.

Barbara Techel, an author who successfully sells books to schools, penned a book on the subject, Class Act:  Sell More Books Through School and Library Author Appearances. One of her ideas is to help teachers apply for a grant so they can fund the purchase of dozens or hundreds of books.

She writes:

“If you’re working with a school to bring your books into a program they offer, you may want to consider suggesting they apply for neighborhood, regional, state or national grants to help fund their efforts.  Better yet, do a bit of research for them to identify possible funders and offer to help in the process of grant writing.  You ARE a writer, they’ll appreciate your proactive stance, and you stand a good chance of selling more books for use in their school program. What’s not to like?

Resources to Locate Grant Funding
·                     Grants.gov-government funding sources
·                     FoundationCenter.org/findfunders – International grantors
·                     TGCI.com – The Grantsmanship Center
·                     Foundations.org – Alphabetical list of foundations and grant makers

Other tips to hit local school libraries include:
·         Go to the school library web site and search for the “Library Media Specialist” and contact them.
·         Contact a group called Friends of the Library, a non-profit organization with a mission to assist librarians, including finding speakers.
·         Set up a Google Alert for the following search terms, in hopes of finding new leads:

“Classroom author visits”
“Author visits classrooms”
“Author school appearances”
“Author talks at school”
“Author speaks to students”

Interview With  Fitness Author Loa Blasucci

For more information, see http://www.gotoloa.com/

  1. Loa, what inspired you to write All Health’s Breaking Loose: The Handbook?  I just couldn’t find information that was complete, that told the truth about real beauty--managing the aging process and living with energy--out there. This book needed to be written. There are lots of books that compartmentalize our bodies using THIS vitamin or THAT exercise but, our bodies just don’t work that way. The truth is that beauty and health are two sides to the same coin. It started out as a beauty book and along the way turned a corner to “All Health’s Breaking Loose.”

  1. What was it like working with Hollywood royalty such as Bob Hope, Sir Anthony Hopkins, and Raquel Welch, as well as Hugh Grant, Courtney Cox, and Christopher guest?  I’ve flown in Lear jets, stayed in the finest hotels in the world, groomed some of the most beautiful faces of our time, Oscars, Grammys, galas--it was an adventure I will always be grateful for. Some clients were lovely, some were annoying and exhausting—we all have our moods. Always the driving force—and what stayed with me more than anything else was, they--all of them--always expected the very best. Nothing less. I had to continually raise my own bar to keep pace. It’s a great way to work.

  1. What do you like most about being a published author?  Being able to hand it to someone and say “it’s all in here.” And then seeing them again a few months later and finding a whole new person, almost unrecognizable—it’s so wonderful!

  1. What has been the highlight of your 30-year career in beauty and fitness?  I love doing TV programs, talking about the body and the aging process and demonstrating fresh ideas on camera. So, after having spent so many years in film and TV production, it’s wonderful to step out from behind the camera and share what I learned—that beauty and health come from how you feel and what you carry around inside, then with food and science—you really can have the body you’ve always wanted.

  1. Do you have any advice for wannabe authors? Writing a book is no doubt, an endurance test. Even for die-hards--capable of plugging away for years on end—but without self discipline, your writing project can go on for too long, your initial themes,/meanings/ ideas can grow stale or wear out rendering your material irrelevant. Set aside time to write daily. This will keep your mind tuned to creative ideas and they will flow more easily. The effect is exponential. This “flow” is what makes the book happen.  Writing daily increases the flow.

  1. I watched your DVD, Mind Body Sculpting with Loa. You look half your age. How do you manage to stay so young? I eat super foods daily. Food really does create the body you have and I love to eat and eat well. I drink fresh juice and take a shot of wheat grass as often as I can. These two things really make a difference in the "brightness" of your complexion. I think of my body as thriving, I don't worry about aging--it is truly possible to feel better than you ever have and every day some part of you gets better. I focus on getting better rather than breaking down. The mind is the most powerful tool to reverse aging. But there is a lot to be said for self care! I put it all in the book so it was a complete guide to feeling and looking fresh. I have some in depth videos going up on YouTube that give tutorials about the care of the skin, etc. And thank you for the compliment.

Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer, Planned Television Arts. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person.

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