Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Reason. And some shameless self-promotion.

Carla Carvine is a typical single mom. She gets by working full-time and carefully managing her money. She gets along well with her two daughters and most of her neighbors. Her life may not be perfect, but her street and home are nice, quiet, and best of all, safe.

When she wakes up late one night, all that changes. She discovers news about a murder on her street, shaking her world to it's foundation and making her question the safety of her daughters and the neighbors she thought she knew. As she struggles to hold herself together amid her fears and her lack of understanding, she starts to wonder if there might be even more going on that she's unaware of.

The truth she finds is worse than even her fearful imagination could have envisioned and as she is pushed to her limit, she wonders if she will have the strength to protect her daughters...

The final edit is finished and the last details are coming together much faster than I anticipated. Currently, the release of my first book The Reason is seeming like it will be sometime about the middle of March. Of course, expect a post solely dedicated to that when it happens, but for now, the excitement is building and I can't wait to see it available to the entire world.

It shall be my playground.

With all this coming up, a new aspect of being a writer is finally becoming a major theme for me to deal with. Marketing. I was reminded no less of this than when I was watching WWE RAW tonight, as they spent about ten to fifteen minutes on the shameless self-promotion of a movie coming out which one of their stars has a bit part in. To be honest, while I am a wrestling fan, I got bored and left the room for most of that segment. I'm not one to appreciate standing in one spot, waving my personal banner for fifteen minutes at a time. 

Still, a lot of work I've done for the past several months has been exactly about this. Starting this blog, making an author page on facebook, signing up on Twitter and on Goodreads has all been about getting my name out there and preparing the world for the arrival of what I hope will be the first of many books. Some of the responses I've gotten have been overwhelming, such as on this blog, while others have been fairly disappointing. (Twitter, I'm looking at you, here.). I would be lying though if I wasn't pleased with what I've seen so far. 

It's not just the use of these outlets to get my name out there and to drum up interest in my writing. It's the fact that for the past several months I've had very little to show anyone, but I've still had an amazing amount of support, in some cases from people who don't even know me and I can't wait until I can release my book and show them what I've done with the attention and help they've all given. Is it going to be a best-seller? Probably not. Is it a literary masterpiece? God, no. Is it bottom of the barrel garbage upon which paper should not be wasted? I sure as hell hope not, but I'm sure someone will claim it is. (After all, some people still refer to Stephen King as a hack writer.) 

This post is about my self-promotion though, not about the book itself (yet). As I've said, I started all these things to get a head-start on the job of getting my name and eventually my book out there. It's particularly difficult when you've got nothing to show for it. Despite all the people who claim my writing is good, I have a hard time getting published. My first publication was to a small print-on-demand magazine which offered no compensation whatsoever in response to accepting my work. I even had to purchase my own copy. Meanwhile pieces that were better works than that are still getting the rejection letters so common to beginning writers. So many people, including friends and family, are going to pick up my first book with little knowledge of what to expect. 

DAMNIT! Would whoever that is stop throwing pennies on the tracks! I'm trying to stay on course here!

Ahem. I am not good at self-promotion. When it comes to promoting this blog, I'll post the latest post here in the morning and share it through my author page first thing in the morning. Come late afternoon, I'll usually then share that post through my personal page. And I'll feel bad about it. As well, I'll post the link to my latest post on Goodreads. And even on a forum thread solely dedicated to posting the link to your latest blog, I'll feel bad about it. Part of it is because I'm shy. Very shy. I don't like intruding on other people's time or space. (Imagine me trying to dance at a club. Not pretty.) I also feel very irritated when I have things shoved into my face and under my nose by people just trying to sell me something so I imagine other people feel the same. 

It is a fact of this business though, especially self-publishing, that I get down off my high horse and put myself out there. This doesn't mean posting on Facebook or Twitter twenty times a day how many hours, minutes and seconds my book has been available. It does mean I'm going to be looking for roundabout ways to get people's attention, get them to read my book and get them to talk about it. Currently, I do plan on letting everyone I can know via every outlet I have when my book is available and when it hits some levels or gets a special deal I will let everyone know there as well. Other options include an actual ad to be posted on youtube as well as making and mailing out bookmarks with the information on the book and the various sites I use. At one point in the future I may even consider having made my own website. We'll see though. After all, if most of my first book's reviews are garbage, I may just scrap the whole idea and go sign up at the local shipyard for the next thirty years of my life. We'll just have to wait and see. 

In the meantime, don't be afraid to throw yourself out there. You never know what you might be missing out on just because people don't know who you are. 

~ Shaun 

"Well, if you'll excuse me now, Sir. This is clearly a very private, family moment. I've ah...I've no fish to embarrass you further, I'll let myself trout." - Kryten, talking about Rimmer's Mum. 

1 comment:

  1. I heard your voice in my head narrating... not Morgan Freeman.