A unique blog dedicated to covering the worlds of book publishing and the news media, revealing creative ideas, practical strategies, interesting stories, and provocative opinions. Along the way, discover savvy but entertaining insights on book marketing, public relations, branding, and advertising from a veteran of two decades in the industry of book publishing publicity and marketing.
Tuesday, September 15, 2015
Writers Should Catch Playoff Fever
is when competitive teams in baseball make a playoff run or a pennant
push. You don’t need to know anything
about baseball or sports to know that this means teams will now make their final and best
effort to finish high enough to advance to the playoffs. Most teams go home when the season ends,
wondering what it will take to do better next year. This year, for the first time since 2008, my
team – the Mets – have a real chance to not only make the postseason but make a
real statement. They have me dreaming of winning it all. All of this talk of the Mets makes me think
about the long season it took for them to get where they are, and it makes me
think of an author’s season. Yes,
writers have seasons. Here’s how to
think of such a season for those looking to write and promote a book.
writing season may seem continuous but it really goes in spurts. For instance, a disciplined writer may:
*Take several months to research information.
a month to brainstorm ideas and lay a book out.
daily for three months to complete a book.
a month to edit and re-write it.
maybe you can shave weeks or days off of any stage and bank, a book out, from
conception to print – ready in 5 to 6 months.
Then the fun begins. You are
either taking a break, beginning the next book, or promoting and marketing the
book you just finished. In between,
you’ve researched and contacted either distributors (to self-publish) or
literary agents and publishers (to secure a publisher). Oh yeah, and you may have a day job to tend
to and family to look after and house chores, working out, and any of a
thousand things to do.
back to the season of things. Book
marketing has a season. It’s all based on your scheduled publication date. It looks like this:
months prior to pub date, craft a marketing plan
months prior, interview and research marketing, publicity, or advertising firms
if you plan to get professional help
months prior, start connecting with organizations to schedule speaking
engagements and craft your press kit materials
months prior, send advance review copies for testimonials and endorsements and
send out copies to reviewers at magazines and long-lead publications.
schedule continues right throughout three months after a book’s release. A book has a window or time – or a season –
to be relevant to the media, to consumers, and to groups that may have you as a
speaker. The playoff push comes before a
book is published. In fact, the season
is what happens in preparation for your launch or pub date and then the months
following the launch should be seen as the playoffs or championship.
as I get excited over the Mets, who are in first place as of this posting, I
know in most years I’m already reflecting back at this point over a lost season. Authors should consider now what their season
will look like – both for writing, planning, marketing, and then executing the
PR plan efficiently. I have playoff
fever – do you?