I’ve just released my first Historical Fiction novel Healing Love. I’ve blogged, Facebooked, Pinterested and Twitted no it’s Tweeted on the web. I sent out press releases to newspapers, radio and TV stations. I called them back. I’ve done all the things which I’ve been told to do for a book launch.
I did do a launch event and sold fifty, yes 50, print copies of Healing Love. This doesn’t include copies I will be getting to friends who didn’t attend the launch but told me they want a copy. I’m told this is a large number of book sales at a signing. So how did I do it? I piggy-backed.
As a debut novel there were things I chose not to do; give aways, blog hops, things like that. I’m still learning about all that it takes to keep up with a web presence. I don’t have the time to learn about each place on the web and the hoops needed to be jumped through to get my book promoted there.
I live in a rural area. We live on a family farm. The opportunities to have any type of launch event are pretty slim. Simply having a stand alone launch event would be costly and not attract people other than my family and close friends.
Each year Aledo, IL holds Rhubarb Fest. The entire county only has 16,000. Aledo has 3600. Rhubarb Fest draws several thousand people from the extended area. I haven’t heard the count for this year, but last year 3000 rhubarb pies were sold. It’s a two day event. It always rains sometime during the Fest.
I chose to piggy-back my launch book signing onto Rhubarb Fest. It only cost me the booth space fee, two days of my time and some labor of hauling and setting up of my booth. Oh, smiling and being friendly is important too.
By doing the background work of sending press releases and calling after they were sent, advice given by Book Cover Cafe, the word got out not only to my community but also the surrounding area which feeds Rhubarb Fest. A number of people stopped and said they had seen it in the paper that morning and wanted to buy the book. The press release is a vital part with no cost to you. Book Cover Cafe has a great post on how to write an effective one.
Using an area event as the launch, even though the focus is not on your book, the number of people who walk by and have seen the press release is greatly expanded. I’m planning on trying to find other venues of that sort to launch my other books. Antique Days is August 25. Unfortunately, Lord’s Love won’t be ready until some time in September.
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