Friday, October 19, 2012

To Go, or Not to Go?

For a writer trying to market their book(s), they often have to choose wisely which venues to attend and which to decline.  While, we’d like to disillusion ourselves into thinking of all the great fanfare we’ll receive on the release of our first book, for sure by our second book, and no-denying by our third, we often don’t get to choose when or where we will make our appearances; most often accepting the few and far between appearances that make themselves available.  We often sit alone in our solitude and scour the local events and wonder, where can I go, and how can I get there? And then determine how to move heaven and earth to make it happen.

For those few lucky superstars of the literary world, who catch the uber-agent and get snatched up by the big house publisher, they are often ‘told’ by their publishers when and where they will attend – determined by marketing experts who know how to get the most bang for the buck – after all, they did provide the initial investment into the new superstar writer.  Big business is in the business to make money.  It’s not personal, and it certainly isn’t by their charitable hearts they desire to see their writers succeed.  They support the writers who can put out a good product that will make them money.  When, or if, the writer or the book fizzles, so will their love. 

Most often these superstars believe in the fantasy they created concerning their role in the publishing universe, and the role of the publisher – pretty much relegating them to fairy godmothers who wave their magic wands and make the success happen  out of thin air– without any work on their own part (other than writing the novel).  However, truly sustaining and successful authors know the importance of self-marketing and management, and often live a life of self-promotion at all times (except when they’re writing).  They get involved with local groups, mentor new novelists, and make appearance on social media and social events – not giving away ALL power and responsibility to the publishers.  Most often, or at least I’ve seen this happen a few times, surpass their publishers and find themselves entertaining sweeter deals. 

So, thou high and mighty writing superstar – perhaps you should think twice about turning down that ‘small’ public appearance that won’t often lead to big sales or big rewards. Tell the truth – it’s really because those small appearances don’t stroke the big ego enough.  I’ve often found the best networking connections in intimate settings.   But, the bottom line is that you, the writer, are the only one who can truly answer the question of whether to go, or not to go, where to go and where not to go. 

Till next time,
~T.L. Gray

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