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Saturday, June 30, 2018

Who Wins Or Loses With So Many Published Books?




Thirty years ago some 45,000 new books were published.  Now the number is seven times that – from traditional publishers – and 20x that when you factor in self-published titles.  The volume of books being published is staggering.  Think about it.  

If you lived from 1968 to 1988, the combined number of books published in those years would fall far short of what 2018 is producing.  In a matter of four years, the number of books published would be equivalent to an 80-year span just a generation or two ago.  Is this good for society or healthy for the book publishing industry?

Let’s first talk about society.  If we weigh the pros and cons of prolific publishing, we may conclude the following:

Pros
·         More choice for consumers and greater customization for targeted demographics.
·         More competing titles could keep prices down.
·         More books mean more movies-based-on-books will come out.
·         Increased competition might make the best books even better.
·         Free speech flourishes and previously ignored or banned ideas, facts, reviews or theories get to see the light of day.

Cons
·         Library budgets can’t handle so many more books.
·         Consumers are burdened by choice – and confused by it.
·         Book reviewers can’t keep up.
·         Too many books get published that lack editing, worthwhile content, or good fact-checking.
·         A centralization of books gives way to millions of random bits of information.
·         Bookstores and libraries burdened are over how to select what they shelve.

Now let’s look at the book publishing industry:

Pros
·         Greater variety of books increases chances of something being purchased.
·         More authors means more advocates promoting books.
·         More books increases the chances of some real gems rising to the top.
·         More books creates more jobs for printers, editors, cover designers, book shepherds, publicists, etc.
·         Greater experimentation is taking place when a million books are published.
·         Topics that otherwise would be ignored are getting discussed and opening the door for new genres.

Cons
·         Literary agents have to sift through more submissions and manuscripts than they could possibly keep up with.
·         Too many titles sell a few hundred copies or less.
·         Book reviewers can’t keep up, and will likely see good books slip through the cracks.
·         More books compromises the ability of the marketplace to give each of them a fair opportunity and as a result hampers or clouds the ability of some of the worthy books to get proper attention.

So, do the pros outweigh the cons – for society or the book publishing world?  The good news is none of us has to decide.  It’s up to each author and publisher to determine if a book is worth publishing, both from a financial and societal perspective.

There’s something appealing to the idea that anyone can publish anything at any time but it’s tempered with the reality that each book fights for readers and there simply are more books than readers.  

The U.S. population is around 330 million vs. 1 million new titles published this year, would mean that if every man, woman and child read a book a year, each book would average 330 readers.  But we know that between illiterates and those that choose not to read books or who suffer a disability or leaning disorder, there is a pool of readers, that’s closer to maybe 200 million adults and teens who read books.  So now it’s 200 readers per book.  They’d have to read five books a year to hit 1,000 readers.  Notice I said readers, and not book buyers.  Fewer book buyers exist than readers.

When I mentioned 45,000 books were published 30 years ago, that was a time without Netflix, Amazon Prime, You Tube, Twitter, Facebook, blogs, podcasts and other competing sources of content, much of which is free.

To be a writer today means you’ll need to work, extra hard – not only to get published, but to be compensated. Today’s author really is not as respected as he or she was a few decades ago.  To be a successful author is looking more like a lottery – you have to be in it to win it, but your chances decrease with so many players involved.


DON”T MISS THESE!!!

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The keys to great book marketing



How Authors Can Capture The Media’s Attention



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Enjoy New 2018 Author Book Marketing & PR Toolkit -- 7th annual edition just released




Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.”





Thursday, June 28, 2018

Are You Optimistic About Marketing Your Book?




The one thing that separates all authors is their perspective on their book marketing:  Are you optimistic or pessimistic?

That’s it.  

Sure, other factors will play a role in how successful you are with marketing your book – your creativity, quality of book, how much time and resources you dedicate to promotions, the level of your competition, your book’s price and distribution, etc. – but it all begins with your mental approach to things.

The optimists will see opportunities everywhere and feel encouraged to try new things; the pessimists look for reasons why something will fail and pursue the path that proves their instinct true.

As optimists will try things and do something differently; the pessimists will labor at the same failed method and wonder why they can’t achieve new results.

An optimistic author-turned-marketer won’t stop after getting some level of success – they’ll see it as a lead-in to pursue greater riches; the pessimist will set the bar low for achievement and occasionally reach it without thinking of going beyond it.

The optimists brainstorm and see possibilities in every idea; the pessimists look to find weaknesses or reasons to dismiss any idea they think up or is suggested to them.

The optimists imagine and look for ways to support beliefs or theories that could help them; the pessimists only deal with cold facts and don’t look around the bend to wonder if things could be different.

The optimists speak with confidence, enthusiasm, and a smile, helping to convince others of what they see and feel; the pessimists communicate with fear or depression, low energy, and a dour look on their face, leaving others uninspired and unconvinced that anything good could come of what they say.

The optimists are likeable, friendly, and interesting; the pessimists are closed up and isolated and unwelcoming.

The optimists will keep trying until they break through; the pessimists are quick to give up and point to early rejection as justification for not giving it their all.

The optimists will be inspired by successful people; the pessimists will be jealous of them and not learn from them.

The optimists will animate stories, insert humor, and supply real-life, positive examples to demonstrate a point; the pessimists will be quieter, duller, and negative in every which way.

The optimists will seek out help from others; the pessimists will wrongly assume no one can help them.

To promote a book and author brand, you need to take the approach of the optimist.  Sure, you will still experience failure, rejection, or loss in more than 90% of all your outreach and communications – but you only need to be successful a handful of times to do great things when it comes to book publicity and sales. 

I guess only an optimist would see a  less-than 10% success rate as awesome.

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Enjoy New 2018 Author Book Marketing & PR Toolkit -- 7th annual edition just released


Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.”

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Book Explores Great British Authors




English Lit 101: A Crash Course in English Literature by Brian Boone, on editor and writer for the best-selling Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader, provides us with an engaging and comprehensive guide through some of the icons of British literature.  It offers insights and tidbits that shed light on the great works of the great writers.

Among the featured authors are:

·         Geoffrey Chaucer
·         John Donne
·         William Shakespeare
·         John Milton
·         John Locke
·         Daniel Defoe
·         Jonathan Swift
·         Alexander Pope
·         Samuel Johnson
·         Jane Austen
·         William Wordsworth
·         William Blake
·         Charles Dickens
·         George Eliot
·         Lewis Carroll
·         The Bronte Sisters
·         Oscar Wilde
·         Rudyard Kipling
·         Thomas Hardy
·         T.S. Eliot
·         D.H. Lawrence
·         Virginia Woolfe
·         Wilt Auden
·         James Joyce
·         George Bernard Shaw
·         Joseph Conrad
·         J.R.R. Tolkien
·         George Orwell

Here are some random excerpts that you may find of interest:

Old English
"To the modern-day reader of contemporary English literature, the earliest examples of “English literature” may seem like they were written in an entirely foreign language…and they kind of were.  The beginnings of the English language took shape in the seventh century after multiple tribes – collectively referred to as Anglo-Saxons – migrated from central Europe to the British Isles.  Most spoke Germanic languages – and each tribe spoke its own Germanic language – and brought those languages with them.  Eventually, those different dialects coalesced into a single language, one with wildly inconsistent spelling and grammar, but nonetheless:  Old English."
                                    
Lord of the Flies
"One theme of modernism that gained steam after World War I was an attempt to make sense of the death and destruction, an acceptance of humanity’s innate darkness.  After World War II, this theme was revived when authors wondered if humankind would ever truly be able to put aside its savage and brutal nature – its dark side, really.  In a biblical sense, this is original sin; in a modern sense, it’s man’s inescapable brutality.  The prime example of this philosophy in action is William Golding’s 1954 novel, Lord of the Flies."

English Lit
"English literature started when there was barely even an English language to use.  Dating back a millennium or so, the epic Anglo-Saxon tale of Beowulf was the first thing written down in the very earliest version of what would become English.  Various Anglo-Saxon groups migrated to the British Isles and brought with them different dialects that would eventually combine to form a single language.  It would evolve to become a sophisticated language, and with it would evolve one of the world’s most important literary canons:  English literature.

"Which is to say British literature.  Literature in the English language is among the most influential and vital in the world, spreading the mechanics of poetry, prose, film, and drama to every corner of the globe.  But before there was American literature, or Australian literature there was the written world of England."

Few Documents Remain
"Only about 400 manuscripts total from the Anglo-Saxon period even survive – the expulsion of the Roman-controlled church in the 1500s from England would lead to a lot of intentional document destruction, particularly by way of fire.  But these manuscripts would be the basis for a language and a canon that would emerge as comparable, and often superior, to anything ever produced in Greek, Latin or French."

King James Bible Legacy
"The common phrases introduced into English after appearing in the King James Bible include:  “the blind leading the blind,” “the writing is on the wall,” “there’s nothing new under the sun,” “a drop in the bucket,” “can a leopard change its spots,” “broken heart,” “sign of the times,” “powers that be,” “rise and shine,” “how the mighty have fallen,” “nothing but skin and bones,” and “eat, drink, and be merry.”

Shakespeare’s Language
"The English language literally wasn’t big enough for Shakespeare to express the breadth of his ideas.  So he invented new words –hundreds of them.  Shakespeare used more than 17,000 different words in his plays, of which 10 percent were brand new that he created to fit the situation.  They uncannily fit into the language and were instantly understood and adopted into the vernacular.  Among the more than 1,700 words Shakespeare is credited with inventing are advertising, bedroom, blanket, bump, compromise, critic, exposure, fashionable, gloomy, hobnob, lonely, majestic, mimic submerge, swagger, zany, and the name Jessica."

The First Novel in English
"The first novel in English was The Pilgrim’s Progress, written by John Bunyan in 1678, but the concept of long-form, non-metered prose to tell a single story didn’t take off as a format until the huge success of Robinson Crusoe."

A Dictionary of the English Language
"Johnson delivered on breadth and scope.  There are 42,773 entries, with each word defined and described in meticulous detail.  For example, the entry on “put” runs 5,000 words.  Johnson lists twenty different definitions for “time,” and 134 for “take.”  In trying to record the language of the time, Johnson’s definitions are in plain, often humorous English, contrary to the blunt, pedantic style generally used in dictionaries.  This is his definition of “oats”: “a grain which in England is generally given to horses, but in Scotland supports the people.”  And yet, when economy will do, Johnson obliges.  “Sock” is defined as “something put between the foot and the shoe.”

Famous Writers
"There are only a handful of writers who left such an indelible mark that their name became an adjective.  But while “Shakespearean,” “Kafkaesque,” and “Shavian” describe works influenced by William Shakespeare, Franz Kafka, and George Bernard Shaw, respectively, “Dickensian” breaks through into the real world.  “Dickensian” describes a particularly pathetic state of poverty."

Lewis Carroll
"Among the words Carroll made up that entered into common English usage: chortle, galumph, and portmanteau, a word that means two words are combined – like how newscast is a mash-up of “news” and “broadcast.”

Sherlock Holmes
"In none of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes novels or stories did Sherlock actually utter the catchphrase most associated with the character, “Elementary, Watson!”  Four times, however, he said, “Exactly, my dear Watson!”

George Orwell’s Six Rules Of Good Writing, From Politics and the English Language
"Never use a metaphor, simile, or other figure of speech which you are used to seeing in print.
Never use a long word when a short word will do.
If it is possible to cut out a word, always cut it out.
Use the active rather than passive voice.
Never use a foreign phrase, a scientific word, or a jargon word if you can think of an everyday English equivalent.
Break any of these rules sooner than say anything outright barbarous.”


Check These Posts Out

For Self-Promoting Authors: The 2018 Book Marketing & PR Toolkit
http://bookmarketingbuzzblog.blogspot.com/2017/11/2018-book-pr-marketing-toolkit.html


This is HOW you get a book review
http://bookmarketingbuzzblog.blogspot.com/2018/03/this-is-how-you-get-book-reviews.html


How you can FIX a broken PR campaign for a book
http://bookmarketingbuzzblog.blogspot.com/2018/03/how-to-fix-broken-book-pr-campaign.html


Instead of worrying about book sales, authors must take action now!
http://bookmarketingbuzzblog.blogspot.com/2018/03/instead-of-worrying-about-book-pr.html


Which media outlets really move books?
http://bookmarketingbuzzblog.blogspot.com/2018/03/which-media-outlets-really-sell-books.html

Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.”

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Can An Artist’s Or Writer’s Views Or Personal Life Remain Apart From Their Work?




Roseanne Barr, a controversial but talented comedian and star of the hit comedy series, “Roseanne,” was dumped by ABC over her Twitter statements that involved racism. But this story is not an isolated incident. The whole world of politics, sports, entertainment, business, and has put a chill on free speech.

Most people would agree that if someone behaves badly they run the risk of losing their job, especially if their poor behavior relates to or injures their ability to do their job. For instance, if you are an addict, a company may fire you, especially if you smoke crack at work. Or, if you are a high-profile personality where your image impacts your employer, and, you are arrested for domestic violence, this might earn you a suspension, demotion, or dismissal.

But what if the actions one takes is merely speech? Are Tweets, Facebook posts, interviews with the media or speeches a fireable offense?

I don’t like what Roseanne said—nor her support for Trump nor her other crazy statements over the past few decades. But should those views be seen separately from her TV show?

Can we keep art at a distance from those that create it? Can we separate the artist’s life and views from the work produced?

On the one hand, we may say “Screw her, she’s a racist and an idiot—let her lose her show,” On the other hand, the show is not racist and is actually one of the better comedies across the TV landscape. And even if the show was racist, isn’t it up to viewers to determine what they watch? Or are viewers deemed not responsible enough to judge such things?

I always cringe when speech is punished, even in this case where it seems Roseanne is deemed unfit to have a hit TV show and the platform that goes with it. If we penalize speech, we limit and control it. Or, worse, we begin to push the line that one shouldn’t cross closer to the middle. We’ll go from patrolling what seems like the obvious extremes to picking people off who say less significant things.

It’s a really tough debate. We don’t want evil to win nor see hate flourish. We don’t want to normalize the extremes. But who dictates what is over the top, and who determines the appropriate punishment? Is there something in between TV cancellation and ignoring her Tweets?

All of this is especially frustrating when the President of the United States can call black nations shit holes, say the former President was the member of a religion that he wasn’t, speak in a derogatory manner about women, discuss people as if they are animals, and treat others in a demeaning and disrespectful manner. If he said these things while hosting a show he might have been cancelled. Instead, he gets to rule the world.

What is free speech?
-Is action free speech, such as burning a flag or not standing for the national anthem?
-Is it being able to criticize the government?
-To share our views in all circumstances?
-Is hate speech free speech? What is hate speech?
-What responsibility do we have that comes with free speech—in what we say, don’t say, how we express ourselves, and what we think our speech could result in?
-How does Fake News help or hurt free speech?

PEN, ACLU, and other organizations stand up for free speech and in the process seek to define it, but right now it seems Twitter and employees of those who use Twitter are determining just how far free speech will be tolerated. 

In cases like Roseanne, the price of free speech is very, very high.


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How should authors sell themselves?

The keys to great book marketing

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Big Marketing Lessons From My All-Time Top 10 Blog Posts

Enjoy New 2018 Author Book Marketing & PR Toolkit -- 7th annual edition just released


Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.”

Sunday, June 24, 2018

The Book Marketing Landscape For First-Time Authors


      I participated on a panel this past weekend at the Sarah Lawrence College 5th Annual Publish & Promote Your Book Conference https://www.sarahlawrence.edu/writing-institute/conference.html and had a ball mingling with scores of writers. Here is what I shared with them:   

Seeking to write a book and becoming a published author is a very challenging and rewarding pursuit.  But none of it compares to what’s involved in promoting your book, marketing your brand, and seeking fame and fortune for your unique way of stringing thousands of words together.  If writing a book is like giving birth to a baby, book marketing successfully is like having triplets.

We write books out of a deep passion, to share our ideas, views, experiences, or stories.  It’s a therapeutic if not cathartic process, one that can change or influence lives, including an author’s.  Books help shape the society we live in, while archiving who we are and forecasting where we may go.  Books can inspire, educate, enlighten, and/or entertain us.  To promote and market a book will not only help you sell books, it will also get your impactful message out, assuage your ego, or position you for bigger things like a movie deal or a career shift.

So how will you break through the clutter, where paid and free content comes from all directions – blogs, newspapers, radio, magazines, movies, music, plays, podcasts, television – competing with the 3,000 new books released every single day, on top of the millions of books that never go out of print, as well as other distractions from Twitter, sports, video games, etc.?

One needs to publicize themselves before, a book is published and then he or she will have to sustain a continual marketing effort for a lifetime.

Now, that’s not meant to overwhelm or scare you.  I tell you this – based on nearly three decades of experience in working directly with over 1,000 authors on their publicity and marketing – to help you get in the proper frame of mind if you are hoping to be a successful author.

Here are a few dozen tips on how to achieve greater brand recognition, book sales, and career achievement as the author of books:

  1. As much as you love to write books – and perhaps other forms of content – you have to plan for some of your day to promote and market yourself.  Beyond your household chores, personal obligations, and professional demands, carve some time to promote your writings.

  1. When writing your book, take into account the elements of your story or information that could be a selling point to consumers and the news media.  Think about what people want, like, or need in addition to you seeking to write the book that you feel drawn to pen.

  1. Understand that book marketing is not a one-time thing – it’s an everyday, all-the-time thing.  It can’t be left in the hands of a publisher, should you land one, and it can’t be performed only when you have a book out.  You are always building your writing and book marketing -- resume.

  1. Get a grasp on the book marketing landscape.  It breaks down as follows:
·         Traditional Media – TV, radio and print (interviews, reviews, feature stories, byline articles).
·         Digital Media – coverage by bloggers, podcasters, media websites, online book reviews.
·         Social Media – think Twitter, Facebook, You Tube, Instagram, Linked In, Pinterest.
·         Non-media – such as speaking appearances and events.
·         Advertising – paying for ad space, reviews, or access to influencers.
·         Sales – bookstores, affiliate marketing, libraries, businesses, groups, schools, book clubs.

  1. You’ll need to budget time and money for your book marketing and you may need to get training in areas where you lack skills, such as website design, media coaching, or understanding how to fully utilize social media.

  1. Understand the timeline that revolves around a book.  Once you know when a book is being launched (its official release date is listed in Books in Print), work backwards from there.  Let’s say your book is coming out May 1.  Four months prior to that – January 1 – you’ll send out advance review copies (galleys) to major book review media such as Publishers Weekly, Kirkus, Library Journal, and NYT Book Review, as well as long-lead magazines (magazines like Time, Glamour, Fast Company, and Parents that work way in advance, and the morning TV shows (Today, GMA, CBS This Morning, Fox & Friends).  Prior to that, other things must take place, such as book cover design, printing the galleys, creating press kit materials, developing your media list, designing and posting your website, and setting up your social media account profiles.

  1. The key window of time to get publicity for your book starts about a month before the book’s release, through the first three months from its launch date.  After that, your shelf life, in the eyes of the media is essentially over.  Though some books can remain relevant (about terrorism or how to recover from cancer), they only make the news down the road when something is making headlines that you can connect to.  If a terror attack takes place seven months after your book was released, you can still be quoted as an expert and as the author of a book on terrorism.

  1. One of your best information assets for marketing and publicity, aside from publications like Publishers Weekly, Writers Digest, or The Writer, are trade groups such as ASJA, Authors Guild, PEN, National Writers Union, and IBPA.

  1. Other writers can be supportive and helpful too.  Join the professional group of your genre, from Romance Writers of America to Society of American Travel Writers.  Meet writers at conferences and book fairs.  Befriend them online through FB or LI Groups.

  1. Follow writers that you emulate and find to be leaders in your genre.  Connect with them on Facebook and Twitter.  See what they are saying and doing and copy what you can while incorporating your own style and voice.

  1. Here are the things you will need to get up:
·         Website for you/your book.
·         Social media profiles, author sites you plan to be active on.
·         Develop press kit materials.
·         A blog-post on it at least weekly.
·         Profile page on Amazon’s author central.
·         Business cards.

  1. You need to think of your author brand – how do you express yourself when discussing who you are, what you write about, your writing style, and your unique voice or views.  Come up with a 20-second elevator speech, a tagline, and an image that represents you --  it’s not just a book cover or author photo, but more of a logo.

  1. Look at the news media as an investment portfolio.  Just as you divide your wealth into various areas – real estate, stocks, gold, bonds, etc. -- and then further subdivide within each investment class, see media the same way. Devise a plan for securing coverage with:

·         TV – national, local, regional, international.
·         Radio – national, regional, local, international.
·         Print – newspapers, magazines, news wire, trade journals, newsletters, airline publications, community publications (national, local, regional, international)
·         Digital – podcasters, bloggers, sites of traditional media, websites, online book reviewers.

  1. Then think about which specific media outlets would you approach, and at each outlet who should you contact?  For instance, under print, you might select newspapers, then USA Today, then a specific book editor, columnist or reporter.  A good media list is half the game here.

  1. Think like the media.  What do they need, want, or desire?  What are their demographics – whom do they try to appeal to for advertising and readership?  What would that specific reporter be interested in, based on prior coverage, personal details of the reporter, and the demographics of the media outlet?

  1. Be ready to help create a story.  Can you deliver facts, stats, video, photos, documents, and other resources to help the media craft a timely, relevant, and unique story?

  1. What will your message be to the media?  It can’t just be “I wrote a book.”  Will you offer a benefit, expose a secret, say something new, discuss a famous person, help us feel inspired or emotional, make a claim, issue a challenge, raise a question, lobby for an issue, spark a debate, or be controversial?  Will you appeal to key topics that move us: sex, religion, politics, wealth, health, kids, death, or celebrity?

  1. he key to improving one’s efforts to promote a book to its maximum potential, ultimately  rests on the following: Timing -- doing what’s needed when it should be done. News Cycle -- your book needs to tie into what’s in the news, on the calendar, or an honorary day/anniversary. Luck – sometimes you have to be in the right place at the right time. Word-of-Mouth – your book, if it’s really good, once in the hands of a few hundred or thousand people can get word-of-mouth traction. Great Testimonials – they alone don’t sell a book but they add to the positive impression needed to influence others. Persistence – push daily and never giving up or get discouraged. Confidence – act with the belief you will succeed. Planning – strategizing and executing go hand in hand. Local to National – start locally and regionally and then branch out nationally.
  2. Give Yourself A PR Audit. Examine your past and see what the media might find noteworthy. Look at the experiences you have had and see if any are worth discussing. Think of the connections you have and the people you know – can you drop names to the media? Identify what is in your book that the media will find of interest?

  1. Avoid Mistakes By Authors Who: Wait too long to start thinking about publicity; Mistakenly think they can do it all; Wrongly assume they will succeed without PR; Falsely believe the media will cover them with little effort; Think PR is a one-time thing but really it’s an ongoing, perpetual thing.

  1. What’s Today’s Media Landscape? There are more media outlets and opportunities exist than ever before. Their value, individually, is more diluted than ever before. You will need a certain quantity of quality media placements. Most media coverage can take place by phone and email -- it’s becoming rarer that an author needs to travel or take to a road tour.

  1. How You Talk About What You Wrote Matters.  Are you the most qualified to write your book? Sound like it. Find a way to summarize without the details. Can you compare your work with other known writers? Sell the action, the dilemma, the characters, the words. How do you describe your book in the context of your life? Can you genuinely speak with passion, confidence, and conviction? You should visualize your press release headline as you write your book. Find a way to succinctly put your book or story into perspective and relevance. Express it in a way that serves a need, fulfills a desire, or feeds a want – and sounds interesting.

  1. What Helps You Get Media? Localize or regionalize the book. Media coverage begets media coverage.  Get buy-ins early to create traction.  Build buzz by getting early reviews. Have the backing of a group. Try to ride the coattails of others or be linked by association to big things, people or events. Tie into something that is on the calendar – a relevant holiday, an anniversary, an honorary day. Think of your life – create a matrix of people, events and experiences and think of how to call upon your past – ask for specific favors. Exploit personal experience: overcoming addiction, abuse, poverty, loss, disability, arrest. Create a resume: don’t lie, but shape it to tell a story = develop your media persona. Channel your energy, resources and creativity not just towards your writing, but to your PR efforts. Use your gift – your ability to communicate with words and images – to promote your work.   


  1. What Else Can You Do? Meet deadlines and work in advance to handle potential setbacks. Poll others to test out ideas.  Anticipate – don’t just follow – trends. Get used to talking about things in a way that is more hype than substance, more extreme than modest, more sensational and not so ordinary. Copy what works for others – but only the important traits. Coincide your media pitches and efforts with upcoming events, holidays, anniversaries, honorary days, and timely news hooks

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Enjoy New 2018 Author Book Marketing & PR Toolkit -- 7th annual edition just released


Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.”