Study Hall, April 26, 2021: Mistakes Made and Lessons Learned

Hello again. Yesterday was a perfectly terrible, effed up day, so today we are starting out fresh and rambunctious because there’s no way to go but up. So why not tear out all the stops and tackle the knots in my new novel, and while I’m at it try to solve the lack of something in my latest short story. Maybe I’ll even get up enough courage to send my poetry manuscript to an editor friend and poet who offered to look at it for me.

Wait, you say that’s a good agenda for a week or two? You’re right. Sometimes I have to stop myself from being too ambitious and make myself focus. So maybe I’ll take another look at the poetry manuscript and send it to that editor plus another friend who’s really an editor but won’t call herself that (Looking at you, L) whose word I really trust. And while I’m at it, here’s my bit of cheek for today:

If you haven’t yet read my novel, Eve’s Garden, or have a friend who hasn’t, please hop on over to the EVIL EMPIRE, Amazon, and purchase an e-copy or send one to that friend. Unfortunately, it’s only available as an e-book right now, as my very small publisher took it out of print so she could publish new books. (Or, rather, she kept saying she was going to, so I said, go ahead and put me out of my misery.) I hope I can sell enough ebooks to make it worth another publisher’s while to republish it, along with its sequel, coming up next after this latest little offbeat romance novel. Want to help me in my quest? Thank you and may the goddesses bless.

You see, I didn’t know then what I know now, that most authors who are midlist (or not on any list because their publisher is too small) have to hire their own publicist to do what all publishers should be doing, which is treat your book like it’s your life’s blood. This was a change from when I myself was a small publisher about a decade before. I had done all the things most industry whizzes say an author should do, start a blog, mention your book in ever-new ways on social media, put out a newsletter, talk to bookstores to organize readings, and so on. But there are things an author can’t easily do for herself, like write reviews, or have them written, nominate the book for appropriate awards, etc. Those things should be done by your publisher, but if they don’t, do it half-heartedly, or they are too busy to do it promptly, it has become industry standard to hire your own publicist to stir that soup. So now I know and have my eye out for candidates.

In case you’re also interested in what an agent/publicity rep has to say about book marketing and publicity, here’s a new newsletter from agent and book rep Cassie Murray Mannes that you may find enlightening. Let’s all learn together how not to make mistakes, or, at least, how not to make the same mistake twice.

https://pinestatepublicity.substack.com/p/coming-soon?s=w&utm_medium=web

And, please, please leave me a comment so I know someone out there is listening. I love you and may you have a fabulous day.

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