I’ve been nominated! And yes, I think it’s hilarious that the award and I have the same name. I should get extra points for that. Anyway, I’m very proud of this nomination. I remember reading about this award last year when I was investigating marketing. I never thought I’d actually get nominated. I am in excellent company for my category of Middle Grade Science Fiction/Fantasy. Two of the other nominees are Cloaked by Alex Flinn and Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan.
So at this point, the round one judges will be reading my book and if I pass I’ll move on to the short list on New Year’s. And then the winners are announced around Valentine’s Day.
I found out about this nomination because I got an email from one of the coordinators saying that the judges hadn’t been able to find my book in their libraries. So this brings me to my next endeavor. I remember in a post a long time ago I said that I was going to write a letter to every library asking them to stock my book. Well, that was exhausting and it kind of fizzled out. But now I have a new found determination and a more professional way to go about it. For my publishing company, we are working on creating tri-fold brochures that show off our books. We’re going to do a mass mailing of these brochures to as many bookstores as we can. I’m going to do the same thing with my own personal brochure and focus on mailing these to public libraries and school libraries.
These brochures and mailings can get really expensive. One company I looked up charged over $400 to print the brochure and an additional $500 to mail them to the addresses I stipulate. I’m not ready to invest $900 in this. If I see it is really effective, I’ll put up that kind of money later. For now, I’m going to aim smaller…and cheaper. Vistaprint often has sales where you can get 25 brochures for free. I plan on taking advantage of this and just getting 25 brochures at a time and mailing them myself. I figure I can handle mailing off 25 brochures every other week or so.
Basically, I’ve decided to take my marketing to the next level. No one is going to get my name out there but me so I need to get on the ball. Thankfully, I’ll have a lighter class load beginning in January so I should be able to do more marketing. Here are some of the things I have planned.
Write at least two posts per week on my two blogs.
Tweet at least five times per day.
Mass mailing to libraries (25 at a time)
Write one press release per month
Submit a review book to one major blogger each month
Comment on other blogs at least once a day
Look into radio interviews
Look into advertising or writing articles for teen magazines
In fact, I’ve kind of changed my NanoWriMo project into NanoMarMo…the Mar stands for marketing. Every day I’m spending time planning on how to take my writing career to the next level. I’m actually making a concerted effort to write less and market more. By this time next year, I want to be making $3000 per month in sales. When you think of all the books I have out, that’s not really that much. Soon, I’ll have 10 full novels published. Probably, 11, but let’s go with 10 for now. If I set each eBook at $2.99, I make about $2 on each sale. That means I need 1500 sales to meet that goal. And with ten books, that only means 150 sales of each book. Totally doable. I’m not even including print books, which have been doing pretty well this month. In Sept., I sold over 1600 with only 8 ebooks. My sales fell off a little after that, but their starting to increase again.
My usually problem with my marketing gimmicks is getting too busy with other things and giving up. So each month I’m going to have to come up with some sort of challenge in order to keep myself motivated.