I have been really, really overwhelmed at the outpouring of support and love I've gotten from friends and family in the last couple of weeks. Wow! I should have published a book sooner!
There are a lot of misconceptions that rise up when you tell someone you're a writer, or that you've got a book coming out. I'll admit it, I had those misconceptions right up until I signed my contract a year and half ago.
It goes something like this:
Friend/Family member: You're a writer? Oh, what do you write?
Writer: I write......(Fill in the blank. Heaven help you if you say you write comedy. LOL!)
F/F: Oh....so what have you published?
(They mean well. They really do.)
Writer: Answer A: I haven't yet. Response: A knowing nod of the head and a quizzical look as if to say, "Oh, then what do you REALLY do?" Answer B: I have a book coming out in a week.
This is where the conversation really takes a turn. Once you've covered where they can purchase the book and when, and what the book is about, this will be the next question:
So, are you doing a book tour?
Every writer imagines that book tour. Going to exotic places and trendy book stores, drinking coffee in clear glass coffee cups, throngs of people waiting in line to see you, to touch you, to hear the words of wisdom only you, as the author of this MAGNIFICENT BOOK can give. Your figure in cardboard cut out in the window of the store. (Mine would have to be someone else's body and my face....wait, can I just get a stand in for my cardboard cut out? What's Heidi Klum doing these days?) Luxury suites. Movie deals.
If your name is Grisham, King, Roberts, Meyers, Steele, or Rowlins, this might be the dealio. But I've met a lot of published authors in the last couple years, and I can tell you, it doesn't work like that. Writing the book is the easy part. Hey, EDITING the book is easy. Marketing...that's another thing entirely.
Writers, by their nature, work alone. Most of us tap out our work under cover of night, while the babies are napping, on weekends, away from the spotlight and coworkers and family. It's the way of the business. But then we sell the book (WHOO HOO!) and THEN most of us have to help market the book! (Hmmmmm..... you mean it doesn't magically sell itself all the way to the NY Times Best Seller List?)
So now I'm in the marketing phase when what I really want to do is hide in a corner. I have to swallow my fears and approach book store owners. (Good thing I don't have the "shy" gene.) I have to talk to people about the book I wrote.
I read someplace, or maybe it's just general knowledge, no one loves your book more than you do. And if you can't get out there and be excited about it, no one else will.
So, as I wait for the first crate of copies of "Dream in Color" to get to my house (NOW AVAILABLE IN PRINT, COMING SOON TO DIGITAL DOWNLOAD) I have to figure out a plan of attack. Book signings, book launch party, marketing in general is going to be a big part of what I do in the next months, what I've been doing in the last several.
Still, I have to think that a cardboard cutout of Heidi Klum's body...and face...and my book title, that's got to go a long way in marketing, right?