Monday, July 20, 2020

Take A WordWheel Approach To Marketing Your Book

Games & Puzzles

An author’s book marketing needs direction, perspective, and focus if it is to be a successful venture. Look no further than a WordWheel for guidance.

Every day the New York Daily News publishes something it calls a WordWheel, right next to Sudoku, the crossword puzzle, and word jumbles. Brain teasers not only help us think better and stay sharp, they could assist  us in being better at book marketing.

A WordWheel, in case you are not familiar with it, is a circle with a bunch of letters inside. I usually see eight. One of the eight is a question mark. You need to figure out which letter is missing, identify the first letter of the word, and then go either clockwise or counterclockwise to figure out what the word is.

I often get it inside a minute. Sometimes not. I feel like the answer is in front of my face, taunting me to recognize it. Book marketing can be like that, with the answer of what to do being right in front of your face. But sometimes we miss the clues, or worse, don’t look for them.

These word wheels are fun because they quickly test your vocabulary, spelling, and rules of the English language. You need to recognize patterns to word formations and how letter clusters typically associate with each other.

Book marketing has similar functions, patterns, and predictable results. You just need to start thinking more logically than emotionally, more fact and research-based, than random guessing. Words tend to formulate a certain way; so does book marketing.

The way I choose to solve the WordWheel is I look to see how the word could end. I look for words ending in s, ss, est, end, ing, ly, etc. If I see such a cluster, i know to begin with the end and work backwards. Beginnings of words could have pairing patterns too: st, dr, an, th, etc.

Book marketing also follows paired patterns. If you speak somewhere, send out a press release in advance. If you get a link to a media appearance, send it out on social media. If you hit a best-seller list, update your bio, social profiles, web site, email signature, and book cover.

Sometimes the word eludes or stumps me and I lazily give up prematurely and peak at the answer just below the WordWheel. Sometimes we give up on our book marketing too quickly. The key is to persist and persevere. The answer is often right in front of us.

Book marketing is very much a puzzle. All of the pieces to solving it are right there for the taking. Anyone, theoretically can solve the puzzle, whether of words or book publicity, but only a handful are even willing to play the game, and even fewer tax and challenge themselves when the answer eludes them.

It is a good feeling when you uncover the answer to a WordWheel, and similarly, you will feel so happy as you begin to master the different stages of book publicity. It all begins with your willingness to play the game.

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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 He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2020. 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 and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by as a "best resource.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo 

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