The Book Marketing Diaries Part 3 – Asking for help

I’ve never been too proud to ask for help. I may sometimes be too British to ask for help, but that’s a whole different social anxiety altogether.

Over the coming weeks I will be asking many of my friends, family, acquaintances and the occasional tenuous contact to help me with my next book release.

Specifically, I will be asking a core group of people if they would like to have my book for free ahead of publication in exchange for an honest review so that on the day of the launch, other readers who I don’t know already have some guidance and (hopefully) reasons to pick my book out of the multitude on offer.

This will be happening soon. I will contact everyone who I think may want to help out with this, but I am also open to anyone letting me know that they would like to be part of this journey with me. If I am lucky enough to reach the golden number I am hoping for I may have to scale it back, but for now it’s open doors to early reviewers.

If you do, please let me know either through Facebook, or by emailing info@garryabbott.co.uk, and/or ideally by following this blog and leaving a comment with details of how I can contact you. I will be offering primarily digital editions in whatever format suits. I may consider providing a few printed copies if people are adamant! (but this will be limited… overheads and all. I got a marketing plan to try and fund here!)

In the meantime, in lieu of the real artwork that will be coming at some point, here is something I put together for a bit of fun (this in NO WAY represents the actual artwork… I just like messing in photoshop now and again, and skulls are cool, especially in space, with a bowler hat, a monocle, a galaxy and a planet for eyes, coming out of a supernova…These are nearly all images that you may encounter mentally if you become one of my treasured readers!)

tgc teaser layers 2 copy

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The book marketing diaries Part 2.5 – A series?

Alluding back to part 2 of this diary (here: The Book Marketing Diaries Part 2 – What’s in a name?) what I came to realise from feedback and seeing those names laid out in front of me was that maybe I was looking at more than one title here.

I have a general idea of the plot of a second book, which I have left open as a possibility in the upcoming novel, and thematically, it would follow on nicely to have the following two titles confirmed, with any third part being left for another time (say, when I was anywhere close to writing it).

So my current thinking is this:

BOOK 1 (Autumn 2016):

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Book 2 (2018 – I have an unrelated title in progress at the moment slated for 2017):

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Book 3: (Who knows? Let’s not get ahead of ourselves here, but if I get a modicum of success from the first two, I would look at a trilogy).

Of course, as a free individual, I reserve all rights to not write another at all! But I do have enough confidence to think a second part would be of interest to my readers at least.

So, that’s my current thinking… But I am always open to having my mind changed (and have in fact, spent many years actively trying to do so), so PLEASE do comment in any way you can if you have an opinion and/or advice about this!

Thanks to everyone who has helped me out so far. even the littlest comment can make a big difference when you are doing something like writing, which despite everything else in life, can feel like a lonely endeavour sometimes.

 

 

The Book Marketing Diaries. Part 1

Hello there.

You may recall that in 2014 I launched my first book, ‘The Dimension Scales and Other Stories’, or you may not, I really don’t know.

Either way, I did. I secured an agent to release it as an eBook through all the usual digital channels (including, alas, some that are now no longer with us), and a year later I released the paperback (without agency assistance).

I was, and remain, proud of that achievement, but it was a first step into a larger world, a world that I didn’t and still don’t yet fully understand how to reach out to.

You know the world I’m talking about, because you’re probably on it right now (unless you do crazy things like print out blog posts onto dead trees) – yes, I am talking about ‘The Internet’.

For anyone looking to reach out to fellow human beings and promote work, it would be ludicrous to ignore it. However, the internet does have a hell of a habit of ignoring you – and that’s the challenge.

Apart from the odd curiosity (especially if they include cats), violence, porn, and high-profile (and highly funded) campaigns out there; for the average person the internet can be a frustratingly aloof resource.

Yes you can start a Twitter/Facebook/Pinterest/LinkedIn/Website/Blog and spend 80% of your time trying to fill it with things to ‘build your platform’ and whatnot, but does it actually work?

I’m not going to say it doesn’t, as I don’ think I’ve got the hang of it all yet. I especially don’t want to spend 80% of my time trying to do so (as some self-professed expert guides will have you think).

So, this time, I will be keeping a little diary of what I’m doing, what it costs (because, yes, there will be costs), and how successful, or otherwise, my attempts are.

The eagle-eyed amongst you will have already spotted that this is in itself, part of the experiment/marketing plan that I have just today decided I’m going to need, given that I’m not having luck with any of the agents this time.

So, part 1 of this blog leads me to item 1 of my marketing plan…

  1. Keep a marketing diary blog.

Pros: Hopefully people will follow your journey and offer assistance, maybe even buy your books and help circulate word of your existence to wider circles.

Cons: I have to remember to keep an online diary and find something to write about at least semi-regularly. Plus, savvy people will realise that they are being marketed at, but then, I will point this out to them, making it some kind of fourth wall breaking ‘meta’ marketing strategy. This will be cool and they will immediately become ardent supporters of your cause.

I of course don’t yet know if this, like any of my activities, will be of use, but let’s find out together, you and I.

Item 2 is quite important, and I’ll cover that in more detail soon (it is already under way):

2. Get a great book cover and titles design from talented people who know what they are doing…

So. There we go. It has started. The only thing that could stop it now is one of the agencies who are still considering my work coming back with an offer, in which case, I won’t really mind that this blog has been for nothing.

Oh! And very importantly, step 3:

3. Actually mention the name of the book and a bit of blurb.

The book is called ‘The Great Connection’ and is a future set ‘first contact’ science fiction novel about the exploration of space through a global citizen-science project that connects deep space observation satellites with virtual reality environments, enlisting the help of ordinary people around the globe to explore uncharted worlds as a form of home entertainment.

It is on one of these worlds that Raif Masters discovers the first signs of alien life in the ten years since the ‘Great Connection’ project was launched: but it is a discovery that could tear his family, and the Earth, apart.

… So there you go!

Marketing Budget To Date: £0.00

 

 

 

 

Of pleasure and pain.

Last Thursday I reached a milestone in my life to-date: the release of my first book – ‘The Dimension Scales and Other Stories’.

Since completing this collection, finalising the editing process early this year and soon after getting picked up by the Trident Media Group literary agency to release the title on all the major eBook platforms (a welcome development!) – I have spent an anxious few months waiting for the formalising of the arrangements, the formatting of the text, getting the cover design sorted, quality assuring files etc…

And now, it is here! It finally landed. Around midday last Thursday I saw the pages start to appear on the internet. I did some quick-off-the-mark promotion, but held back knowing that from the weekend I could really go to town and start getting this thing moving. Then on Friday I had to go into hospital.

Luckily it was for nothing serious in the sense of life-threatening, but it has knocked me back and I am still recovering. (I won’t go into details).

It has been a challenging time; wanting to do so much but being unable. Trying to reconcile the notion of rest and recovery with the energy of long-held expectation and excitement. I tried to do some work here and there, but it was unfocussed, and uncomfortable, and wasn’t helping in the long term. So I resolved to defer a week to get better. Which more or less lands me here, now, still not totally better, but getting there, finally able to abide sitting at my computer, typing this, right now, with my fingers, using my eyes and brain and suchlike.

What has been fantastic and lovely and heart warming is the support I have already received from my friends and family (for both the book and my rubbish week!). It almost makes it all worth it, even if I were to only sell a handful of copies. But I don’t want to sell a handful of copies, I want to sell absolutely loads of them! Not because I’m greedy, I wouldn’t be trying to work full time as a writer and musician if I was greedy, but because I have spent a lot of time and thought on this project. I also have a little theory that a book needs an audience.

Not to say that you cannot or should not write for yourself if you wish, but it is how the stories I have put together are represented and interpreted by each and every reader, each of whom will have a slightly different experience of the text, guided as much as possible by what I conceived and wrote, but ultimately making it belong to them with their own unique imagination. That’s what I want to see, because that’s what I enjoy happening to me when I am absorbed by other’s art.

And hopefully, if enough people enjoy this experience, they may want to do it again with something new – and I am more than happy to provide this, in fact I intend to anyway! (Sneaky preview: My next book, a full length novel, has the working title ‘Snakes & Ladders’, but it’s not about the board game!)

This feels like a straightforward and simple transaction between myself and my readers. I hope you agree. And I hope that for the price of a pint of beer you may enter into this relationship with me, I would be very grateful, and I promise to do my best to keep providing you with things to stimulate your imagination and entertain.

Below are links to where the book is available for sale. These are all eBook versions. Many people have asked me about print copies but unfortunately this is not currently available. This is a cost issue more than anything. If you don’t have a pad or eBook reader, you can download free software from Amazon or apple to read digital books on your PC or MAC: it’s all there on the site and easy to do.

If you do buy and read my book I would be really grateful if you could also leave a review on the page you bought it from – that way I am more likely to attract passing readers. And also, tell your friends!

Thank you for reading. I hope you enjoy.

Garry

 

AMAZON UK: http://ow.ly/w70Vr

iBooks: http://ow.ly/w71di

Kobo: http://ow.ly/w719A

NOOK: http://ow.ly/wbPm0

Barnes & Noble US: http://ow.ly/wbPpR

AMAZON US: http://ow.ly/w713K

 

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